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  • Frank Tian

🚨 Canadian Mortgage Fraud

🚨 As if the growing mortgage payment is not enough,

Canadian homeowners now have a new thing to worry about.

Criminals are eyeing to sell your home without your knowledge.

🟦 How is this even possible?

This fraud scheme is not new.

However, more incidents started in late 2021/early 2022, when the real estate reached the price peak with a low-interest rate and short inventory. Criminals deemed this as an opportunity worth all their troubles and risk.

They typically target seniors’ homes, vacant homes, and rental homes - those have built a lot of equity.

They use fake identifications to impersonate homeowners. Then list and sell the properties. It could involve someone who illegally access the land registry system along the way.

Pandemic-induced remote signing process makes it easy for criminals to send in electronically modified ID documents.

In the end, they ask the lawyer to put money in a specific account to which they have access.

Once the owners find out a few months later, the criminals have gone with little trace.

In some cases, criminals seek new mortgages on the properties instead of sales.

🟦 How to protect yourself from this type of fraud?

Real estate experts recommend the following:

📌 Buy title insurance, which covers fraud and illegal transfer.

📌 Get a line of credit against your home, although sophisticated fraudsters could cross the hurdle and pay it off.

📌 Thoroughly check tenants' and landlords' identities in a home rental transaction.

📌 Protect personal info and regularly check personal credit reports for abnormalities.

Sources: FTC, Global News, National Post

It is a risky world. Know your risk.

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