In the complexities of an ever advancing Canadian real estate market it has become increasingly important and beneficial for the consumer, such as the first time home buyer, existing home owner looking for a mortgage renewal, or the real estate investor seeking to acquire an investment property to work with a seasoned Canadian mortgage professional – mortgage broker / mortgage agent — when it comes to getting their mortgage financing in order.
A mortgage professional, or otherwise known as a mortgage broker or agent – we will call them from this point onwards the ‘mortgage professional’ — studies in the field of real estate financing and specializes just in mortgages. A mortgage professional here in Canada works for the benefit of the consumer / client, making sure that the mortgage client receives the correct and unbiased professional advice that best suits the needs and realities of each clients situation, which differs from everyone one else.
Unlike the individual working in a bank, mortgage professionals will not try to up-sell to you proprietary specific bank products in order that they meet their sales quota. Mortgage professionals will not push you towards one lender over another, but rather, they will decide which one of the lenders has the best mortgage product based on your personal and unique circumstances. For most consumers when working with mortgage professionals there is no fee’s or charges that they have to pay. The lending institution that approves your mortgage application will pay a commission to the mortgage professional after the closing of the deal.
Unfortunately it has become normal practice for the consumer to shop around just for the lowest interest rate even if that means sacrificing the quality and trustworthiness of the individual or company that is quoting the low interest rate. There should be more to your investigation and shopping of mortgages than just how low their interest rates are. You should be looking at the overall package of the mortgage professional.
Most provinces in Canada regulate the mortgage brokerage industry. The purpose of the regulation is for the protection of the consumer by making sure that individuals who want to work in the industry meet certain minimal judiciary and educational requirements.
If you are considering to become a mortgage broker or agent in any of the Canadian provinces, or you are thinking about seeking the professional help of a mortgage broker or agent, you can visit the following Government web sites to learn more about the mortgage industry and its professionals in most Canadian provinces.
Financial Institutions Commission – FICOM
The Financial Institutions Commission (FICOM) is an agency of the provincial government, which administers nine statutes providing regulatory rules for the protection of the public in the province of British Columbia.
Real Estate Council of Alberta – RECA
RECA is an independent, non-government agency, responsible for governing industry professionals in the real estate, mortgage broker, and real estate appraisal industries.
Financial and Consumer Affairs Authority – FCAA
Financial and Consumer Affairs Authority (FCAA) protects consumer and public interests and supports economic well-being through responsive financial marketplace regulation. FCAA enhances consumer protection through licensing, registration, audit, complaint handling and enforcement activities pursuant to various provincial statutes.
The Manitoba Securities Commission
The real estate division is responsible for administering The Real Estate Brokers Act and The Mortgage Brokers Act. This division registers real estate brokers, salespersons, and mortgage brokers, monitors brokers’ trust accounts, and investigates complaints against real estate brokers, salespersons and mortgage brokers.
Financial Services Commission of Ontario – FSCO
The Financial Services Commission of Ontario is a regulatory agency of the Ministry of Finance that regulates insurance, pension plans, loan and trust companies, credit unions, caisses populaires, mortgage brokering, and co-operative corporations in Ontario.
Organisme d’autoréglementation du courtage immobilier du Québec – OACIQ
The Organisme d’autoréglementation du courtage immobilier du Québec (OACIQ) is the organization responsible for the application and enforcement of the Real Estate Brokerage Act.
Department of Justice and Consumer Affairs Consumer Affairs Branch
Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations Business Licensing