Submission to: Treasury The broking industry needs wholesale reform if it is to act in the best interests of people taking out home loans. We support the imposition of a best interests duty, which should be expanded to all financial products, and the requirement to prioritise needs. There need to be stronger penalties for misconduct, the establishment of record keeping obligations and the loophole about the way a broker is defined needs to be closed. The root cause of so many problems in the mortgage broking industry is remuneration and wholesale reform is needed in this area: removing volume-based and campaign-based commissions, banning non-volume based bonuses, a prohibition on recommending excessive mortgages, ensuring that clawback arrangements encourage switching, defining conflicted remuneration, ensuring that IT software and support systems deliver fair results and ensuring that education and training events are genuine. These reforms would be pro-competitive so that brokers would be forced to scan the market and help people find a loan that best suits their needs.
Although the prohibition of upfront and trail commissions are not within the scope of this proposed legislation, the consumer movement reiterates its support for these recommendations from the Financial Services Royal Commission.