I always strive to leave the impression with my customers that the mortgage business is a service business first. You don't make a profit on one mortgage; you make it on the lasting relationships you establish. It's all about building partnerships.
The relationships I build with my customers are based on the same values I share with my family. Reliability, honesty and commitment are traits that have always impressed me. It seems natural to extend those same values to my customers
Your Banker's 6 Dirty Secrets...
There is a fine line between telling a lie and avoiding telling the truth. It comes back to intentions you can be hurt by a clever omission as easily as you can by an outright lie. It wont come as a surprise, but there are some things your bank would rather not tell you. Well look at six dirty secrets your banker has been keeping.
1. You probably dont need the insurance
Banks offer insurance, sometimes marketed as balance protection, on every debt instrument they offer. You can get insurance on a credit card, line of credit, plain vanilla loan and so on. In return, your payments are covered in certain cases and a death benefit is paid if you die with the debt.
Going through the contract can be interesting and enlightening for consumers. Often many conditions have to be met to receive the hardship qualifications to cover payments and the death benefit is capped at a maximum that may be much less than the value of the loan.
Your banker isnt to blame for that, the bank is. Where the bankers omission comes in is in not advising clients that their life insurance policy may already be enough to cover the new debt already and if not, adding coverage for the amount of the debt will be much cheaper in the long run than paying an extra percentage of your balance on top of the interest.
2. Even if I like you, the system decides
Many banks market the fact that you can go into any branch and have a productive conversation with their representatives the human touch. If you are looking for a loan or mortgage however, theres little human element to the decision process.
Large banks use a computer model that takes inputs such as income, current debt levels and assets, and decides whether you qualify for a loan and, if so, how much. For most people, this process is flexible enough that they dont notice. For farmers, entrepreneurs and business owners, though, this process can be enraging because it discounts elements of their business and often paints them as credit risks.
3. Im a salesman
There are many different terms for it complete banking, one-stop banking, holistic service but when it comes down to it, your banker is there to cross-sell you other products from the bank. Have a chequing account? How about a savings account, credit card, savings bond and a retirement account? Banks want to lock in a customer as much as possible.
4. We offer a complete package to get complete fees
Once a customer opens an account, the pressure is on to open three more. Holding more of a customers financial life at the same bank gives banks the ability to encourage the customer into more fee-bearing accounts without having to worry about the customer shopping around for a better deal. Your banker will never tell you that the bank down the road charges less in service fees and offers the same interest. Instead they emphasize the ease of transferring funds between your accounts within the branch, the transfer fees they wave and the deal they have on balance protection insurance.
5. We make more money from fees than banking
Banks have been pulling an ever-larger slice of their revenues from fees. The tipping point came in the late 90s, when fee income climbed to over half of revenue for the largest banks. Most people, your banker included, will tell you a bank makes its money off the interest it earns from loans to customers. And given how important fees are to revenue, take three guesses at which direction they will be heading in the future.
6. Use a mortgage broker
The biggest secret your banker is keeping is that mortgage brokers have access to the best rates in the business and represent ONLY the clients BEST interest. Instead, your banker will focus on the convenience of having lots of friendly staff wanting to serve you. All those people and buildings cost a lot to keep going. This cost is one of the reasons banks need to tighten their lending models and up their fees. By contrast, a mortgage brokers service doesnt cost you a penny.
The bottom line
Your banker is there to protect the banks interest, not necessarily yours. Its time to look into a Mortgage Broker. Just dont ask your banker for a recommendation, thats another of those things he just wont say.
Mark Fidgett is a Vancouver mortgage broker and the driver behind www.AdvancedEquity.ca
Your Vancouver Mortgage Broker For Life
Week in review
Real GDP continued to recover in August, gaining 1.2% m/m, a result above the +0.9% print expected by consensus. This marks the fourth monthly gain in a row for this indicator, however total output is still down 4.6% from its pre-pandemic (February) level. Production rose in 15 of the 20 industrial sectors covered in August, with two others remaining flat in the month. Goods sector output climbed 0.5% on decent rises for construction (+1.5%) and manufacturing (+1.2%). Industrial production edged up 0.1%. Services-producing industries, meanwhile, experienced a 1.5% surge in production, with the steepest progressions occurring in arts/entertainment (+13.7%), accommodation/food services (+7.3%) and educational services (+3.4%). Year on year, total economic output was down 3.8%.
Canadian GDP registered yet another advance in August but the economic recovery remains highly uneven. Some sectors have now fully recovered from the COVID-19 shock and currently stand above their pre-pandemic peaks. That is the case for agriculture/forestry/fishing/hunting (+2.5% compared with February), finance/insurance (+2.1%), real estate (+1.5%), wholesale (+1.3%), retail (+1.2%) and utilities (+0.8%). That said, certain industries continue to suffer. For instance, production in the mining/quarrying/oil and gas extraction segment remains 17.2% below its February level thanks in large part to depressed energy prices. The sectors most affected by social distancing measures are also struggling to recover. Output in the arts/entertainment segment is roughly half what it was before COVID. Production in accommodation/food services, meanwhile, remains 28.2% short of pre-pandemic levels. Transportation and warehousing is also tracking 20.5% below February. While the economic rebound is likely to have extended into September Statistics Canada advance estimate suggests production expanded another 0.7% in the month the steep gap between the best and worst performing industries is likely to endure in a context in which people continue to avoid social contacts. Looking further ahead, the real question remains whether the recovery can be sustained, especially now that COVID-19 cases are surging back up, forcing some provincial governments to reintroduce social distancing measures.
Is the BoC Doing Enough?
There was no shock and awe in the Bank of Canadas overall set of communications this morning (here, here and here). In fact, the overall guidance appears to be well short of crushing it in my opinion. CAD was little changed in the aftermath of the communications, but it had been depreciating ahead of time with the driver being Covid-19 effects on global risk appetite. The Canada curve was also little affected post-communications with less than a basis point rise in the two-year yield.
Here is what they did on policy measures:
Purchases of Government of Canada bonds were reduced to at least C$4B/week which is down by $1B from previously.
GoC bond purchases will now be skewed toward longer-term bonds in the 3, 5, 10, 15 and 30 year segments of the curve but with MPR guidance (page 25) that purchases in the 3- to 15-year maturities tend to have the greatest effect on household and business borrowing rates. Watch for the next statements of operational details ahead of the next secondary market purchases of GoC bonds for elaboration on what they are targeting in what proportions.
Guidance on how long the purchases will continue remains vague and simply states they will continue until the recovery is well underway. Macklem has previously defined that point to be somewhere between the initial stages of recovery and closure of the output gap, though he did not repeat that today or offer anything else. For modelling their balance sheet Ive tended to assume until mid-2021 as a middle ground, but it could be longer.
Forward guidance was moderately strengthened. They did so by now attaching a statement-codified timeline to the closure of the output gap and achievement of the 2% inflation target sometime in 2023 until which rates will remain on hold. Previously they had indicated they would not hike until this was achieved but did not attach a timeline in the statement. This shouldnt really surprise many by way of new information. Its priced, and we had already largely figured this to be roughly the case.
source: Derek Holt, Scotiabank Economics