The Real Estate Council of Alberta (RECA) is reviewing mortgage brokerage standards and Rules to enhance consumer protection, ensure our standards of practice are strong, and to document current practices in the mortgage brokerage industry. We want to know what our stakeholders think of the proposed changes.
RECA urges mortgage professionals to read the Mortgage Brokerage Proposed Standards of Practice and Rule Changes Consultation Paper and provide input on:
- Disclosures of material risk and product suitability to consumers
- Removal of intermediary relationship option
- Document and Information Verification: Mortgage Fraud
- Private lending procedures
- Mandatory content forms to assist these changes
Stakeholders can provide their feedback on these proposals via an online survey. We encourage all stakeholders to review the complete consultation paper before providing their feedback. Please provide your feedback on or before May 8, 2018.
RECA will also host Town Halls in Calgary and Edmonton in March to facilitate open discussion on the topics in the consultation paper. When we confirm dates and locations, we’ll notify stakeholders.
Goals of this consultation:
- Council wants to ensure that Alberta’s rules and standards of practice are strong, and continue to provide appropriate consumer protection.
- Council wants to know if there are ways in which it can and should enhance consumer protection in a number of areas, while recognizing the needs of mortgage brokerage professionals.
- Council acknowledges that self -regulation is a privilege, and wants to retain that privilege.
Other jurisdictions in Canada have experienced increased government scrutiny and, in the case of British Columbia’s real estate industry, have lost the privilege of self-regulation. As a proactive regulator, RECA makes every effort to continually enhance its regulation of the industry, and ensure consumer protection remains at the core of its work.
How did we get here?
The Mortgage Broker Regulators’ Council of Canada (MBRCC) and RECA’s Mortgage Brokers’ Advisory Committee (MBAC) researched disclosure rules across the country, along with documentation practices, service relationships with borrowers and lenders, and borrower information verification processes. Following that research, MBAC made a number of recommendations to Council for revised standards of practice and Rule changes.
The research identified trends in the industry, including an increase in private lending, more required disclosures in other jurisdictions, and consumer-side mortgage fraud: and the proposed changes address these trends. The proposed changes also provide opportunities for building the industry’s reputation through enhanced consumer protection and greater harmonization with other Canadian jurisdictions.
Your feedback is important. Council will consider all stakeholder input before deciding how to proceed.