Is Your Elderly Parent At Risk Of Real Estate Fraud?

Understanding Real Estate Fraud

Stories about real estate fraud have been around and it’s important to better understand it and how you can protect your loved ones and their home.

What is real estate fraud?

The three common types of Fraud that consumers should be aware of are mortgage fraud , title fraud and Invoice fraud.

  • Mortgage fraud occurs when someone intentionally provides inaccurate, fraudulent or incomplete information to a lender in order to get a mortgage that they might not otherwise be granted.
  • Title fraud occurs when a criminal steals the identity of your parent/ homeowner and then uses that false identity to steal the title of their home through false documentation filed at the land registry office. They could then sell the property or get a mortgage on that property. Properties that are mortgage-free and unencumbered tend to be more vulnerable to this type of fraud.
  • Invoice fraud occurs when a service provider such as Contractor,Roofer,Plumber, Electrician and others who do a job for your loved ones and then provide you with a fake invoice. The fake invoice is of a non existing company or non existing GST or QST. Before you hire anyone verify the accuracy of their information and that they are registered.

What can you do?

Most cases of title fraud or mortgage fraud are the result of identity theft. There are few things you can do to help protect your loved ones from identity theft and mortgage and title fraud:

  • Protect your loved one personal information.
  • Consider buying a shredder for them. An identity thief will pick through their garbage or recycling bins.
  • Guard their mail. Ensure mail is forwarded or re-routed if they move or go on vacation.
  • When hiring a service provider, check their credentials

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