Alternative Facts in Mortgage Brokerage

We have all read and listened to arguments out of the US about “alternative facts”. A well referenced quote by the late US Senator Patrick Moynihan who passed on in 2003 is relevant today;

“Everyone is entitled to his/her own opinions, but not his/her own facts.”

In the mortgage business we are regarded as loose with our credibility in numbers. The real estate industry manages a central repository that values transactions and dollar volumes to ensure credibility and valued recognition. It has evolved to create new categories for teams, so a group doesn’t compete against individuals, but still qualify for recognition within a peer group.

In contrast, many rewards for Mortgage Brokers are based on self-reported content and there are no distinctions between teams and individuals as there are in other sales businesses.

It is challenging to get good numbers when our industry submission platform has 90% of its deals tagged as “in progress”. That includes the ones that funded in 2006.

I believe that this “loose” attitude about credibility with our industry numbers has contributed to a new, more disturbing phase of comfort with circulating “alternative facts” to advance one’s cause. This is content distributed by senior people in broker networks and technology firms without vetting or confirmations before distributing. I have no interest in advancing their cause, so I won’t share the content, but I do want to say to each reader here that they say these things for two reasons;

  1. They don’t believe their credibility will be challenged
  2. They think we are naïve enough to believe it

I understand that people love a good rumour, or a juicy bit of news about another person but what I am talking about here is beyond that. It is a loose relationship with the truth and it can have huge consequences to an industry if it creeps forward and continues unquestioned.

If someone says something to you about a person or company that is a competitor to their own that sounds both beneficial to them and damaging to the other party put up your Alternative

Facts radar! We need more Alternative Lenders not Alternative Facts.