Purchasing a house, land or any other real estate property is likely the biggest financial investment you’ll make in your lifetime. To protect yourself, be sure to work with a licensed mortgage brokerage, mortgage broker, mortgage agent and mortgage administrator. Under the Mortgage Brokerages, Lenders and Administrators Act, 2006 (MBLAA) all individuals and businesses in Ontario who carry out regulated mortgage brokering activities must be licensed with the FSRA unless otherwise exempted by the Act. Our role, as regulator, is to ensure that licensed mortgage brokers and agents follow and meet specific education, experience and suitability requirements.  

Mortgage Brokering


Thinking about an alternative/private mortgage?

What you need to know

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Working with a Mortgage Broker?

5 Questions you need to ask

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Common questions

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Who can provide a mortgage?

You can get a mortgage loan from any business organization, person, or group. When getting a loan, you will work with a mortgage broker or agent, an individual licensed under the Mortgage Brokerages, Lenders and Administrators Act, 2006, who acts as an intermediary between you and the lender.

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Can you help me get my money back?

FSRA has no jurisdiction or authority to recover any funds on your behalf. If you’re suspicious about a fee, penalty or another charge you paid, seek out independent legal counsel or contact the Law Society of Ontario (LSO) for legal advice.

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What is the difference between a level 1 and a level 2 mortgage agent?

A Level 1 mortgage agent can help you get a mortgage from a traditional lender, for example, a bank or a credit union.

Some consumers may not be approved for a mortgage by a bank or credit union and need to turn to different lenders, such as alternative or private lenders. If this is your situation, you must work with a level 2 mortgage agent or a mortgage broker. A Level 2 mortgage agent or a mortgage broker can help you get a mortgage from all mortgage lenders, including alternative and private lenders.

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What are my rights after I sign a mortgage contract?

A mortgage agreement is a legally binding contract. Once signed, you are responsible to fulfil your obligations. The best way to protect yourself is to read the document before signing and ask questions. Before signing, a licensed mortgage -broker/agent must disclose any material risks of the mortgage agreement in writing and in plain language. Be sure to read all documentation and ask questions before signing. Read more.

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What is a syndicated mortgage?

A syndicated mortgage is when two or more people invest in a single mortgage against one property. Developers use these mortgage loans to get funding for large-scale real estate development projects. Syndicated mortgage investments can be extremely risky for investors, given that the project is often considered high-risk by traditional lenders, such as banks. Read more.

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Must I pay a fee in advance?

Mortgage brokerages may charge an up-front fee or retainer for loans above $400,000 for services to be rendered or expenses to be incurred. This fee should not be paid in cash and must be paid directly to the mortgage brokerage, not the agent or broker.

Understanding the Mortgage Process

Buying a home is one of the biggest investments you can make, and it is important to understand the process. A licensed mortgage professional can help you understand the process of financing a home, the documents required and the professionals involved in the transaction.

Working with a Mortgage Professional

Getting a mortgage is an important decision. Licenced professionals can help you understand your options so you can make a more informed choice. Learn more

Shopping for a mortgage

Shopping around for a mortgage takes time but it’s worth it given the amount of money involved. The more mortgages you compare, the more likely it is to get one that best suits your needs. Learn more

Mortgage application process

The mortgage application will require you to provide basic information, such as your name and address, along with confidential information. The information is used to assess your borrowing capacity. Make sure you read the application carefully before signing it, and never sign an incomplete form. Learn more

Signing a mortgage contract

A mortgage is just like any other legally binding contract. You and the lender are expected to fulfil the requirements and obligations. Since these documents can be complicated, it’s recommended to read all the information and ask questions before signing. Learn more

Private Mortgages

Consumers who are unable to qualify for a traditional mortgage from banks and credit unions may need to turn to private mortgages for financing. If this is your case, remember that private mortgages are supposed to be a short-term solution. It can be easier getting a private mortgage, but you may face higher interest rates and fees along with additional conditions or restrictions. What could happen if you don’t leave a private mortgage

Mortgage fraud hurts everyone

Mortgage fraud is a serious offence. It occurs when anyone involved in the transaction knowingly misrepresents information or provides false documents or details when securing a mortgage. These actions can lead to criminal charges where deceit and risks of financial losses are exposed. If you find yourself to be a victim of mortgage fraud, please contact your local police department or the Canadian Crime Stoppers Association. To inform FSRA of the fraud file a complaint.

Investing in Mortgages

Are you interested in learning more about or investing in alternative mortgage investments, such as private mortgages or syndicated mortgages?

Learn more about private mortgages

What to know before investing in a syndicated mortgage

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What FSRA Can Do

  1. License mortgage brokerages, administrators, brokers and agents
  2. Make sure all mortgage brokerages, administrators, brokers and agents in Ontario comply with provincial laws
  3. Review complaints with consumer’s consent and take regulatory action against unlicensed individuals or businesses and those licensed that have demonstrated misconduct in the sector when there is sufficient supporting evidence provided.
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What FSRA Can’t Do

  1. Provide any other form of legal or financial advice or interpretation of the legislation
  2. Help with contractual disputes, provide compensation, or assist in recovering or collecting funds
  3. Force mortgage brokerages, administrators, brokers and agents to follow the demands of the consumer

Enforcement and monitoring

We take our responsibilities to protect you from misconduct or non-compliance very seriously. View our most recent enforcement and monitoring information for this sector.

Engagement and consultation

We work with a Consumer Advisory Panel that provides a consumer perspective on proposed FSRA policy changes. View our engagement and consultation information.

Useful resources

Legal Advice - Law Society of Ontario (LSO)

Federally Regulated Institutions (ex. Big 5 banks) - Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI), Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC)

Issues with Pay Day Loans, Money Mart, etc. - Ministry of Government and Consumer Services (MGCS) - Pay Day Loans Act

Consumer Protection Act (CPA) - Ministry of Government and Consumer Services (MGCS) - Consumer Protection Act

Securities (Shares, stocks, bonds, mutual funds etc.) - Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC), Mutual Fund Dealers Association of Canada (MFDA), Ontario Securities Commission (OSC)

Criminal offences such as fraud1 - Local Police Department

Real Estate Agents/Real Estate Transactions - The Real Estate Council of Ontario (RECO)

Appraisals/appraiser - AI Canada + CNAREA

Canada Mortgage and House Corporation (CMHC) - CMHC

Mortgage Professionals Canada (MPC) - MPC (website for mortgage professionals) ; Homebuyers (website for mortgage consumers)

Mortgage Broker Regulators’ Council of Canada (MBRCC) - MBRCC

1 The police have jurisdiction of the Criminal Code; they should be contacted first and foremost. Callers are still encouraged to report the issue to FSRA so we can review through matter for non-compliance with FSRA legislation if the matter is relevant.