What makes a Regional Broker of the Year?

It’s no small achievement to receive a Regional Broker of the Year Award at the Canadian Mortgage Awards, recognizing the top brokers in various markets across Canada. For TMG The Mortgage Group’s Max Singh, being named Alberta’s top broker was an important milestone in an eventful career in the mortgage space – and a testament to the hard work put in during that journey. We caught up with the Calgary broker to hear some of the key factors behind that success.

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Fergal McAlinden 00:00:07

Hello again and thanks for joining us on another edition of CMP. TV. I'm Franco McAlinden, News Editor here at Canadian Mortgage Professional. We recently hosted our Canadian Mortgage awards for the 18th year in Toronto welcoming hundreds of mortgage professionals from across the country. Competition was as always fierce across a range of different award categories, not least the Regional Broker of the Year awards featuring some of Canada's leading mortgage brokers. Winning in that category for our Alberta was Max Singh, a broker with TMG the Mortgage Group based in Calgary. And we're very pleased to welcome back today to tell us a little bit more about his win. And some of the key reasons behind his success. So Max, thanks for joining us today. How's everything with you?

Max Singh 00:00:46

Doing great, another beautiful day, and we're one day off from the weekend. So that's, that's pretty amazing. Need that.

Fergal McAlinden 00:00:51

Absolutely. Right. First of all, congrats, Max on the award. I mean, tell us how it feels to be named broker of the year, as I mentioned, really competitive category across the entire province.

Max Singh 00:01:01

Yes, well, I'd have to say, jaw dropping he even at the wonderful event that was hosted by Key Media and, and everyone who participated to make wonderful was such a wonderful night. I remember sitting in my chair kind of staring off when the when the category was announced for Alberta. And I'm one of those ones who tends to not never win anything. So I just happily sat and smiled assuming that someone else's name was calling That's right. And soon as they said, Max Singh, I continued not to believe that it was myself so it was actually a couple of couple of folks are sitting around me were giving me the elbow jab that said he Max, it's you go up go up, right, so overwhelmed, to the extent where I ran out the room immediately from receiving the award and and called my mom and my dad in the service station, in the back of the hotel there to let them know the exciting news, right. The funniest part of the the the or the the funniest and most stressful part of the entire journey was, upon my return, I delicately placed the trophy inside my third my my check in luggage Upon returning to Calgary stood at that carousel. And that was probably the scariest moment out of all of it, because my bag never showed up. And yeah, yeah. So I was I recall having a conversation with the WestJet. Staff. And they asked me if there's anything important in my suitcase? I said, Yes. They go close. In such I go no, the broker of the Year award that I just won, approximately nine hours ago. This, we're going to try our best to find out for you, which is and they did. So that was that was wonderful. But there was a good, good six hours of of some serious stress to say, hey, my parents are going to be pretty upset that I lost the award in that period of time.

Fergal McAlinden 00:03:06

Yeah, what is one you definitely don't want to lose Max. So like, obviously, it's a really big moment for any broker to win this award. And it's always a kind of a landmark or a touchstone in their career. But I wanted to get back to the start on how you got your start in the mortgage industry. For you what were the first few years like and you know, how did you get your started?

Max Singh 00:03:25

Oh, yes. Well, how I originally got my start was rather interesting. I, in the banking sector. I was around 18 years old, and I just just arrived in Calgary from Vancouver. And like any any 18 year old I was, I was wasn't doing much. I, a cousin of mine had a had a liquor store that I worked in. And let's just say we were we were indulging in more supply than was being sold at that time. So my cousin promptly shut down that liquor store, probably a loaded gun for 18 year old boys to be having that between myself and the rest of the cousins. So my mom, my mom said, Hey, why don't you go apply with the banks online? And I said to my mom, you know what, that's there's I have no chance, you know, and so I went online, she pushed me to do so ended up filing an employment application with Scotia Bank didn't hear much for a couple of weeks, and then all of a sudden they got this employment offer. And this was one of their local call centers that they had here in Calgary, I had no license and approximately enough bus fare to get from one side of the city to the other side of the city. So I worked with Scotiabank for slowly from from their contact center into their branch environment and slowly moving my way up the ranks. Um assisting clients, it was while being a 26 year old kid providing at that point I was 26 years old, providing financial advice to consumers. Looking at my own bank accounts, were an absolute disaster, right? till the age, at one point or the other, I learned that the bank had a specialized program, which were called mortgage specialists where you, instead of servicing the hundreds of products at the branch level, individuals do serve as one individual product, which is mortgages, which I found to be super interesting. As number one, it's a technical product number two, the purpose behind the product was so substantial, I was into just setting up somebody's $1,000 credit card to buy on Amazon or a savings in their 12 Savings Account to to get my stats completed on a monthly basis. There was a huge purpose behind this product, right? So I switched over to the mortgage specialist rule, which was 100% Commission, and this is where it gets really fun. I was dead broke, dead dead broke, like, you know, probably here $100,000 in credit card debt. I bought a condo, which was a brilliant idea when you're just starting a business. No furniture, no nothing. And I remember, I live on on around 27th street and my cousin's restaurant is on 14th Street. And they didn't have enough gas money to get from 27th Street to 16th street to get myself free food at that time, you know? Everyone told me to quit. Everyone said, Hey, Max, this is the time like, you know, this, this seems to are it is, is this is Is this something you want to do? You know, while you see your peers slowly grow past you, they're, they're getting promotions or their income stream is going upwards and upwards and upwards. And at this point, what I would do I was on an I was unsure what to do madmen was on TV at this point. And I use that as like a as a as an indicator of who I want it to be. So I would wake up in the morning, throw in a really expensive suit, and proceed to sit sit there with my phone in front of my in front of me in my laptop. And I was a smoker at the time. So the sit there and smoke cigarettes all day while the phone never rang. whatsoever, right? So I'd shut it down around five o'clock and assume that I've you know, done a healthy day. Right? You know, okay, all right. That's the end of that. It wasn't until I transitioned from the bank to a licensed mortgage broker was a point where things started to really, really take off. A good friend of mine told me Hey, I asked him a best friend, I should say he I asked him, I said, Hey, man, what do you think if I transitioned from the bank onto the mortgage side, as a licensed mortgage broker? What do you think? You know, how better Can I serve? You guys, friends, community? Everyone goes, well, Max, the minute you stop saying no. And you start saying yes, this is the point in which you're going to see your career take off, right. And I looked at my bank accounts again, I remember at the time it was around, I think around 3200 for the licensing course. So at that point, I had to pick up the phone and call Vancouver call my parents to to ask them for to pay for those courses. They happily said said yes. Assuming that hey, this is another venture of mine, you know, like I'm going to start I wanted to be a pilot one day and a drone operator the next in the Special Forces ninja the next day and they said hey, you know what, if you find your calling you find your calling. Here you go. Right. So took the courses past the courses, and started with the wonderful brokerage in which I have worked with new TMG, the Mortgage Group. And I was assigned to a gentleman named Carl Qadri, he's still still in the business. He slowly turned from a mentor to to to being a brother, we've been together for the last 10 years. And he told me he showed me something that I've never seen before which is how to work. How to get into the office at 7am into leave at 9pm or 11pm and just constantly work if you don't have anything to do work, read read lender policies, reach out to individual lenders, marketing posts, whatever that's necessarily within your your wheelhouse within that day. So now next to 10 years being being with with the Mortgage Group, seeing my my volumes from I believe the first year was Somewhere around 1.3 million, and which equated to, at the time, probably around about $9,000 in in revenue that year for myself, while my mortgage payments were around $1,600 a month that excludes vehicle expenses, food, air, water, whenever else was something that was God given rights, you know, so the first year from 1.3 went to 1.6. And the constant calls to say, you need to quit, you know, I had my, my aunts at the restaurant feeding me borrowing money from my parents and my friends, just just to have gas in the tank to, to go and meet prospective clients and buy them coffee. The funniest interaction is I went to go meet a client at a prestigious downtown building here, which is called bankers Hall. And I got stuck in the underground parking lot, because I didn't have enough money on my credit card to get out. So I remember my my cousin transferring money, so I can put money on a credit card to pay the the attendant to leave the lot. But there's like a, there was a delay of about 30 to 45 minutes before the email, money transfer came in, well, then the cost of the parking went up. So I was still stuck for around three hours, they're trying to try to pay this $26 Bill to get out of this parking lot, right. So and why why stress over these items. wasn't easy. Nobody gave it to me, nobody wanted to call me nobody wanted to work with me. And once he had get a file and ultimately lose that files with competitor bank, or things as such, it was it was incredibly detrimental, you know, year three, it's starting to grow a little bit, maybe around up to around 2.7 2.8 Still, I'm underwater, I have $90,000 in credit card debt and mortgage payments, and just the the regular day to day expenses wasn't getting anywhere, Max, you need to quit, you need to quit, right? You know, why do you do this to family keep saying over and over and over again, friends are saying so year four, slowly starting to click a little bit, maybe around 5 million in revenue came in that year, you're getting better at what you do, you're you're in a framework, now I'm I leave the house and I head into an office of a bunch of gentlemen who were peak of their game, and then sit there and just watch them every single day what they would do how they would talk to people or they would fill properly fill out documents to kind of establish a process behind the scenes, which was mine, then then slowly but surely the fifth and the sixth years, then it really started to click, you know, now 910 years in as an example. I you know, it's like, you know, an elderly parents saying to kids, enjoy your time now. You know, you know, enjoy being a kid now, you know, go outside and play and do all those things. Like I haven't had a day off and yours. You know, in years, when we're on vacation, when where I met my cousin's wedding in Dubai, which is sort of like a nine to 12 hour time difference where we're sitting at the lake, we're in Mexico for conferences, it is a constant, constant battle, just to just to maintain, and you actually want to so if I go back to those days, when I was sitting around in, in a madman suit, bring zero calls, by phone, you know, have a nap mid day, maybe play some World of Tanks on Xbox, right? You know, call it a day go lie down these days involves the office or I have a couch that's in my office and probably about two, if not three days out of the week, I sleep on that couch, and it's actually rather small, and I'm rather tall. So I'm bundled up. Just just so you can avoid that 30 minute commute both ways and preserve time and be a little bit more efficient, which ultimately results in, in your clients getting better service. Right?

Fergal McAlinden 00:14:19

For sure. But I mean, Max, talk about finding your calling, like you mentioned your parents hoping that that would come you've gone from the situation that you described to broker of the year for the entire province. And I mean, one of my questions was going to be what are the main factors behind that? And, you know, what do you think was the reason that you got the award but to me, like that past experience that you had seems to have been a really important factor.

Max Singh 00:14:46

Yes, yeah. Agreed. Agreed. And even prior to that, like I Fergal, like I I grew up in originally from Vancouver, and we were kind of done to a series of really difficult carts right like I grew up in a battered women's shelter for years. We we we had, we lived on the streets, we lived in YMCAs and whatever whatever that was available at that time to provide shelter. My driver is not raw. It isn't the compensation. It isn't status it's fear of going back to that place that's what that's what scares me that's what gets me up every single day. That's the the nightmare right? I remember that place I remember those bunk beds I remember the communal food I remember those things. So even to this day, my I'm I'm so motivated to share those final words from lender that says file complete and when you pick phone and you call a client and they go knocks I can't believe you did this max. This is amazing. Like I the gentleman I helped the other day, who's a 14 year mission for him to be living in Kenmore to assist his dad that has a mess. A very nice lady the other day that I helped that has been fostering indigenous children with special needs for 18 plus years. And nobody in the bank would give her mortgage she was constantly moving from one location to the other as a as a renter with with this this group of children so the mortgage industry for both gave me purpose. But my my driver is primary driver is is to hear those words from clients mouths, and also the fear of ever returning and even even worse at some of these events, it's rather interesting like I this the suit jacket that I'm wearing right now is probably the most expensive item that I owe. I buy one black T shirt every year I wear $25 h&m jeans that I bought in packs. I buy one pair of white shoes annually, I drive a 2008 Honda Accord. My sunroof doesn't close. It's minus 41 degrees here in Calgary over the winter months. People always ask like, Max, like, you know, why don't you go by yourself that fancy car or go by yourself that house you're doing anything like that? To me, it's it, it it, I can never do it. I still feel like I come from those humble beginnings. So when I heard them call my name, and they provided me with that, that trophy. Now it was 13 Nine years of struggle 39 years of somebody finally saying, Hey, you did it, man, you know, so I I'm even emotional talking about it right now. Like it shakes you up to go. Wait a second, you know, there's a chance out. It exists. I never believed it. I never believed you know, you're gonna buy a car or you'll buy a house or now. Even so I there's a certain level of impostor syndrome that exists in all of it that says, Wait a second. I'm the guy now Right? Like I got, I got this done. I'm I was nominated broker the year the phone doesn't stop necessarily ringing. There's media attention. There's individuals reaching out, even looking at the social media posts and minor post that said, that said, hey, I want the number of comments and, and people. So it was really exciting to see how many folks that I touched in in how many people actually cared to see that success. So it's the whole process is absolutely humbling.

Fergal McAlinden 00:18:50

And makes me love the middle leader and potential clients is like, we all know that it's so important that it's really difficult to bottle as well, especially in the market that we've seen over the past couple of years. You know, we know interest rates are really high borrowing costs, are I affordability, cost of living crisis, all of that. What have you been focusing on yourself? Whenever you're dealing with banks, especially in this market? I'm getting them over the line when it comes to homeownership or refinancing or whatever their need is.

Max Singh 00:19:18

Yes, yeah. That's a really interesting question. And thank you, the the I were as mortgage brokers were primarily inundated with data. And it was it was interesting. And tell us a president which posts are coming into COVID Post COVID And now the interest rate cycle which which is primary, which is the greatest challenge we're facing as president I've noticed the story means so much more than what it did. You You're us as as as banking representatives, the story really comes from numbers. And I always joke I said the numbers don't lie, your credit score you your income, your ability to manage that your savings, those are all character character, demonstrate demonstrating tools, right? What I've come to, to change now, as I've evolved in the industry is the the, the those little words behind all of these individual numbers as to how this all came about, you know, so, whatever. But what I've learned now is I asked more deeper questions, you know, which which that didn't, which didn't exist before it was it was very transactional versus relationship. Now, you know, what are your plans in the future? You know, is this your forever home? You know, are you are you folks intending to have children? Are you, you know, how did this bad debt come about, you know, it's shifted very much. So from our time that when I was in the bank, it was just an in the box, thought process, if you, if you match some of these characteristics, you're you're approved, if not sorry, and you and you move on to the next one, you move on to the next one, what I've come to realize now being as an independent mortgage broker is for the, the story matters so much, and we're in a position to assist these people in ways over and above, solely just the mortgage product. Right? Now, I'm close to 20 years in the financial service sector. My the knowledge round as simple items such as like a cycle to date, credit card statement, it arrives every 26 or 28 days, or how to manage your credit score. My knowledge now in my interactions with client or hope filled fonts, you know, I tell everyone, you may not get a mortgage now, but it's not a never item, it may be three months, six months, eight months down the road. So let's have a conversation to see if what we can do to better your situation going forward. And people will love plants, I've come to realize, you know, it having a brief conversation with someone and putting them adjusting their their financial plan just slightly to maximize their, their future savings or credit repair or, you know, ability to obtain financing necessarily going forward or, or just improving their overall financial picture. They jump at that. And it's incredibly rewarding. It's almost like it's almost your your religious gift back to the world, right like this. This is what my contribution is, this is what my purpose is. And I tell folks all the time I say, you know, I'm human, if I step outside that door, God forbid, you know, if if, you know, I don't wake up tomorrow, everything that I told you was gospel, it's true. You know, the plan continues onwards, and in people tend to appreciate that so greatly. So that's fine, as a president is so challenging. Oh, I think maybe I'm a little under the weather. And I think some of it has to do with yesterday was the Bank of Canada meeting. The impact to me, is not Oh, they changed it or not. They close my eyes at 11 o'clock. 12 o'clock. 132 3334 30 was the point when I actually went to sleep when I was up at around eight o'clock in the morning because my entire mindset was focused around what his skin one day going to look like tomorrow, our my clients going to react to this right, you know, we might even have 1000 Max, this is too much, you know, the roof is crumbling above us. Okay, guys, what can we do? You know, let's, let's maybe let's look at refinancing, like we discussed before, let's extend the amortization. Let's try to give you a little bit of flexibility in your payment. Thankfully, the Bank of Canada for the first time in years decided to decrease interest rates by a quarter percent. Which I was jumping out of my bed when I woke up there to quickly rush in to pass that news along to everyone to say, hey, relief is coming in, hold the line, just hold the line. Right? Give us some time. July 24 Fourth is our next meeting. It's trending in the right direction I told you to hold to feel responsible for a lot of these actions, you know the products that that clients themselves enter in you know, be it variable product is keep me up at night, man. So like, oh, yeah, you made the decision. That's you it No, no. I have sufficient influence and knowledge to sway one direction or the other. Right. My role in the transaction is to advise your roles to instruct but a lot of people forget why they went into one product or the other. So to come back in the morning yesterday to provide relief to Canadian consumers was was a feeling of peace that we haven't felt in a very long time you know, you don't even know It's like, you know, getting out of an unhealthy relationship and finally getting over that person, you're likely to have this pressure that's on my shoulders. Like, is this is this happiness that I feel right now? I think that's the best way of putting it. You know, mind you, I've tried, I was fielding probably 1000 calls yesterday, everyone on the sixth every fixed mortgage I've ever done assuming that their interest rate is going down by a quarter percent, you know, just wild and funny actions, like, people calling me and saying, Hey, Max, like, when do I pick up my check for the 25 basis points that the Canadian government reduced last night? And I'm like, wait a second. What? Say that, again, I think I'm gonna need a little bit more time to chat with you. Right. He likes X, Y, Z, right? And but everyone was was was was happy yesterday. And going forward in that is something the pressure that we felt since the rise of interest rates have taken place in those last couple of years. You know, it's funny, when I talk to folks that go, we're just as human as you were feeling it as well, all my words are variable, right? You know, so my $25 jeans from h&m that I would buy every every year, you know, I've made them last a little longer. We're packing lunches, you know, you know, even some of the events when we're out in Toronto, there i, i nap, the continental breakfast that was was in my hotel, and I made made my way home with that. That was lunch and dinner, because we're all just trying to watch her belts. So huge collective sigh of relief there.

Fergal McAlinden 00:26:40

For sure. I mean, I was at a conference yesterday and was speaking with plenty of agents and brokers. And as you say, the sigh of relief was like the big takeaway from the wagon kind of announcement the first time or a long time that we've had we had screwed on and we hope we'll see a few more other so the

Max Singh 00:26:58

Fingers crossed. You know, I think I've every every religious statue in my my, in my house they pray to you every morning. Please give us some relief.

Fergal McAlinden 00:27:08

Yeah, well, we'll see how it all goes. You know, there's one thing that you mentioned earlier on max, just to buy your post on social media after you won the award. And I'm curious to hear about your own approach to social media. Because I mean, anyone who's watching this interview, anyone who's made you knows that you've got a really big personality. And we know that social media is a really important part of, you know, lawyers approach, especially over the past couple of years. How have you been using social media? Like what how does it factor into your business?

Max Singh 00:27:35

I'm so happy you asked this, because this is going to be a incredibly funny answer. My entire social media strategy is showing how much of an idiot I am. And how much of a 39 year old boy CheMin child that I actually am, you know, so I sometimes sit there and stare at the ceiling for hours thinking, you know, I should be more professional, right? I should be that guy that has you know, the sideways shot on the hill as a realtor, I should cater my content so that way it's descriptive and you know, advertising interest rates like I think yesterday the most liked posts that I had was a child on a scooter that hit a bump and went flying in the middle of an interview or or you know, ducks walking funny I put nothing of of serious content on there whatsoever. Just occasional yesterday, I posted some information about the current prime rate and and or past and current prime rate and what the influence would be on a per $100,000 of mortgage balance, just to give some semi consumers and an idea as to what payments might be but the rest of it is just absolute nonsense. And people love it. Right here. No, they absolutely love it. See, no, I'm genuine I miss I'm sincere. You know, there, there was a long video of us doing chair races in the hallway. The gentleman in the office, what I tend to do is we just mess with each other consistently. So I try to park my car as close as possible so they can get into the vehicle. So they have to get over through the sunroof. And then I filmed them from the from my window. My the purpose around that is I know number one mortgages are incredibly specific. So just creating that that blanket blanket marketing piece. I think a lot of folks feel, you know, does that apply to me and things as such, but also, I've been told because I'm just so light and funny all the time and you know, oh, and you know, I'm the broker of the year you can talk to me now like no, absolutely not. I'm a regular dude who came from nothing right? Like, call me and just let me know. Do you need help tell me what your problems are because my my thought process is like a Oh, no Patch Adams though there was that. Yeah, that's my concept right you know make him feel comfortable. That was a movie of a doctor that was dealing with chill just sick, sick kids who dressed himself up like a clown and just had fun and whatever it may be so he removed that, you know that he might prestigious stature in nature. Because you want to be approachable. I want people to tell me their problems on his rights, I want them to say, Hey, Max, like, things are good man, like, you know, Hey, Max, you know, my, my wife, she's not doing well or my husband is as decided to leave or, you know, the kids need this or whatever it might possibly be. And I don't feel the they get that at at the bank. I don't feel like their story matters, you know, as much. So, by me being goofy and light, I use Instagram stories a lot. And like anyone you have a singer, you have a high level of insecurities, right? So I say to myself, I post a lot, right? And it's just mostly nonsense. Like, you know, hey, it's a tough one this weekend in Montreal, which is fantastic. There's, and then it's followed by a series of like, you know, hey, getting into real estate, they said it'd be a nine to five job they said, right? Last if I haven't been here for 24/7, and the guy jumping into a pool or something to that effect, right? Just just versus Hey, you know, here's my brand new Mercedes and I'm clinking champagne at the most expensive restaurant in this and the other one I feel that really relates to anyone these days, you know, they look at me and they say, Oh, wow, you there. I don't want anyone to be envious of my life. I want them to be part of my life, you know? And to tell them hey, man, I'm a regular guy, you can do it too. Right? No matter in your respective business, whatever it might possibly be. So Instagram stories, I use a lot of if you on my Facebook profile. So I went to visit a good friend of mine for headshots. And the there was a couple of very serious ones just me with bow ties me with this jacket, a lot of this and that. And, you know, the so as soon as those were done is my good friend Ali. She looks over at me and goes time for the stupid ones. And we just went to town on right you know, she has me riding a turtle and ride meet riding a bull right up fedora on all sorts of nonsense. Me like this with another version of me that's holding another version of me. You know, we did an adventurous one where there were we're all lined up meet versions of me all lined up in a row. I've never seen so many likes and attention on those ones, right? Like, you know, like, my job is tough enough. I have to deal with people's problems all day, not mine. Other people's problems in the real world aspect is if I make even just the most minor mistake that could cost them the home or hundreds of 1000s of dollars. So the pressure, and the stress is Mammoth. You know, we all these white hairs came about I FaceTime my dad the other day, he said, he goes, Man, you got a lot of weight here. He was stressed. So I go Yeah, that's what they pay me for. You transfer the stress from yourself over to me, and you don't hear 90% of the problems that I deal with on a daily basis. But I don't need to be I don't need I don't need to epitomize that, that that banker that that senior executive or whatever it might possibly be. So even winning the award, and continuing on with my, my, my general nonsense on social media. And I have to say the impact of what I do, like you know, I each their own, but I see somebody post out, you know, hey, I'm this and that and one of those sideways, local kind of realtor realtor photos that you always see. And they get, you know, a good 30 or 40 likes, you know, I get 500 and it's me writing like a chair that we've converted into a unicorn that's holding a like a Zelda sword and there's a cat shooting lasers out of the sides, right like, it's fantastic people just absolutely love it. So my entire In summary, my entire strategy is Be authentic. Be funny, be relatable, you know, because the world's had a heavy enough place you know. So and that's that's that's my go to so you'll constantly see me goofing around in those posts as much as possible in in the days that I don't post it's wild how many messages I get and they say, Hey, Max, some your posts make us laugh and get through the day, or from all over all over the world all over Canada, all from from every walk of life say I needed that laugh today, Ben. Thank you. I appreciate it. Right. And then when I see that and I I say to myself, Oh wow, you're actually making a difference. So I spend my time scanning social media for the funniest related things just so I can repost maybe make somebody's day day a little better, right?

Fergal McAlinden 00:35:04

Good stuff. So, I mean, we talked about the start of your career, we know that you just won the award. You know, for younger people who are getting into the industry now, who are looking at what you've gone through on your journey, they say, you know, they want to do something similar. They want to get into the business, what would be your advice to them?

Max Singh 00:35:24

Well, that's a great, great, great question. My suggestion stems from I had, I had a huge leg up, based on my time working at the bank. I found, you know, the mortgage business is both understanding of financial products and, and Sims. And I find a lot of folks come into this business with strong marketing sales backgrounds, but no real background of how the financial service sector works. And unfortunately, it's really difficult to obtain from books, right, I'm working in junior junior to mid level roles within the within the Bank of Montreal and Scotiabank, really taught me how the inner workings of the bank operate, right. So my Yeah, it excels your speed of execution when you can. In we're all time time constraint, you know, a client needs a refinance in 30 days or a purchase is going to take place in 60 days. So knowledge and experience was the Lega. You know, and so, to summarize that point, I would strongly suggest having some time working in a bank, even as a teller, you understand how they take the money in. And I think tellers are wonderful, right? They, they're the heart and soul of that branch environment, taking money in providing with people's receipts, you know, where did these statements come from? How does this process work? What are the credit cards, you know, what are the interest rates, all of these different little items where you can coach and counsel clients, which helps mitigate which mitigates risk on a file? Because you're like, oh, yeah, you know, go do that or go do this, and then send it into an underwriter and underwriters, like, I were declining the file because they did this, and go, Oh, my God, I just told him to do that, for your money off your line of credit for your deposit. It's no big deal, right? And then the new lender comes back and says, Here's your balance on their line of credit numbers still work file declined, you're like, I would strongly suggest getting some background in financial services sector in the secondary item is, there's three number one, number two, join a team, right join, join with somebody who's a mentor for you. I think a lot of folks are very nervous about giving up a specific level of compensation on their mobiles. But it's madness, right? For us to get from A to Z is milliseconds. For somebody who's brand new in the industry, as an example is oops, who do they call? Who did they talk to you which lender? You know which solutions can work, we can reference that information immediately. But that comes with time. Unfortunately, there's no book you gain experience in this business by by completing files. So having somebody who's a veteran who can sit there and just have a conversation with you and say, Hey man, call AMCAP called home trust, call Merricks talk to this private lender, oh, you can do bridge financing. And this way, you can respond back to that client in a in a quick and efficient manner, versus just doing it alone. Right. And the very last, the very third and very important point, when I started in had no business I showed up every day at the office every day dressed up. And I read and I read and I read and read and I read I read every lender policy every every publication, every piece of data, every document I could get my hands on it was really funny because the guys who make fun of me all the time in the office are like, like we don't know this stuff. We don't read it what's what's the big deal, right? You just pick up the phone and call somebody once you get the file. I thought that was the quickest point for me to get to a conscious level of understanding of how the mortgage industry and how these individual lenders would necessarily work. It was all theory we wouldn't I didn't know what this was or that was but that helped accelerate my my career. Because once the fall actually hit my desk, I knew what to do with it. If I could have I should have done a very balanced component between the educational piece and all those other items and actually sales. Because I'll tell you one thing, Fergal, I never leave this office ever. I'm here 12 to 13 hours, 14 hours a day. Nobody sees my face. Sometimes for days. Sometimes weeks go by where I don't. Sometimes I go downstairs to say hi to the UPS guy just so I got somebody to talk to you. Right, you know, but usually I'm in before everyone else and they're all gone before Riley right so it is a it is a purposeful business but it can be long lonely at times but yeah that's that's my recommendation have a balance between the sense of the sales and the educational piece join a team and in and you know focus on serving the community, not your own pocket, you know if your purpose is service I read a lot and and one of my favorite lines is is you know, Buddhism teaches you that life is service, right? So give more than what you receive. Then ultimately the door just opens as to what you receive as as a little kid from from Vancouver. I still remember the year old me sitting in Toronto, holding my hand up getting that award. It can happen you know.

Fergal McAlinden 00:40:56

All right, well, that is just about all we have time for today's edition of CMP TV. My thanks once again to the one and only Max Singh of TMG, the Mortgage Group for joining us.

Max Singh 00:41:04

Thank you.

Fergal McAlinden 00:41:04

Thanks to you for watching and we will see you next time.