From Trends to Tactics: Insider Insights with Equitable Bank's RBM, Karim Awad

From Trends to Tactics: Insider Insights with Equitable Bank's RBM, Karim Awad

​​In the ever-evolving landscape of the Canadian mortgage market, the role of dedicated lenders like Equitable Bank has become increasingly pivotal. As we navigate through the intricacies of today's real estate and financial climate, it is imperative to gain insights from industry experts who not only understand the nuances but also actively shape the lending landscape.

In this exclusive interview, we sit down with Karim Awad, Senior Regional Business Manager (RBM) at Equitable Bank, to delve into the dynamics of lending in the contemporary Canadian mortgage environment. Awad's perspective promises to offer a unique blend of expertise and foresight, shedding light on the challenges and opportunities that borrowers and industry professionals encounter in this fast-paced and ever-changing market. Join us as we explore the trends, strategies, and innovations that define lending practices in Canada and gain valuable insights from one of the industry's dedicated leaders.

1. What is the quality of deal flow that you are seeing in today's environment? Furthermore, how does that differ from technologically advanced brokerages like 8Twelve Mortgage vs. others that may not lead with technology?

The quality of deals in today's market is undoubtedly tougher; there's no doubt about that. As an Alternative Lender, we tend to encounter all types of deal scenarios. We do our best to always help convert them. It's imperative to have good credit and product knowledge, both on the broker's end and on the lender's side. Communication is more important than ever before, and having the help and support to properly structure your deals is paramount in today's market to seek efficient approval.

2. What can the broker community improve on to help increase our chances at approval/funding ratios?

Be transparent. Get the full story upfront. Have a detailed conversation with your RBM, and it's best to be honest so we can address the issues at hand upfront and not have any surprises at the time of closing. Review a full package of documentation, understand what lenders will be asking for, and be proactive in addressing any questions or concerns they may have.

3. How do Underwriters at Equitable Bank prioritize files from different brokerage partners?

Files are always being prioritized based on closing dates, condition of financing, rush purchases, etc. We do our best to get to rush purchases first and address conditions of financing. Typically, we can turn them around in 1 to 2 business days.

4. What are the various product suites offered by EQ Bank, and how do they cater to different needs?

EQ Bank offers a wide variety of product suites, including reverse mortgages, prime, small and large commercial, stated income, and extended ratio programs. There are also HELOCs, New to Canada, and work permits; all Equitable Bank deals are portable.

5. What are some unique products that EQ is offering to service clients with non-traditional income types?

If a client is a Canadian citizen working and living abroad anywhere in the world, we can consider entertaining the deal with a minimum down payment of 20%. We have closed and completed several deals of this magnitude with the teams.

6. Are renewal transactions on the rise, if so, what do you attribute this to?

Yes, retention is at an all-time high. The simple reason is that qualification and origination rates are extremely high. The cost of borrowing at this point is not beneficial in a lot of cases for clients to refinance with others. I presume that retention is high for most alternative lenders, as switching between Alternative Lenders has to be done as a whole new refinance.

7. Does Equitable Bank compensate brokers on renewal transactions?

Yes, full commission is paid out, up to 50 bps, depending on the term taken.

8. The alternative lending industry has experienced significant change over the past ten years, especially in compliance, regulation, and customer protection. How do you foresee the impact of these changes on the lending environment?

Lending, in general, has become tighter, not just with Alternative Lenders but prime, private, etc. We are definitely in a difficult market. Having to pivot and adapt on the fly is imperative for us to succeed and move forward. I presume eventually, we will get out of this tougher market of higher rates, and things will turn for the better in our industry. If we succeed in today's market, no doubt we will be able to strive when the market turns.

9. What sets Equitable Bank apart from other Alternative Lenders?

Our innovative product suites, and our great customer service. In addition, we take pride in our dedicated team of underwriters and fulfillment managers who work tirelessly to meet the specific needs of our customers. And also having the best support in the industry.

We greatly appreciate Equitable Bank and Karim Awad for giving us the opportunity to discover more of the inner workings of Equitable Bank as well as how our Mortgage Agents can build their relationships with EQ.

To our readers, if you have any questions for the bank, they will be at our networking event, 8Twelve Power Connect, on Thursday, November 23, 2023, as a Platinum Sponsor. Register for the FREE event today:

Registration ends Monday, November 20th, 2023, at 11:59 p.m. EST.

Browse Topic by Interest

Recent Posts at 8Twelve