Old Age Predators


* Someone who victimizes, plunders, or destroys, especially for one’s own gain *

Predatory Loans

My Old Ma

They are not a common occurance in Canada but there is growing concern that some of the practices witnessed south of the 49th parallel may be creeping into our systems.

Canadian Centre for Elder Law

The Canadian Centre for Elder Law recently released its study paper on the topic. Below are excerpts from the Executive summary.

Predatory lending is the practice whereby a lender deceptively persuades a borrower to agree to abusive loan terms. It is closely tied to the concept of subprime mortgage lending, which is the practice of making loans to borrowers who do not qualify for the best market interest rates (people with poor or non-existent credit history or low income). A lender may be expected to require less favourable loan terms in exchange for dealing with a comparatively more risky borrower. But, if the surrounding circumstances include a vulnerable borrower easily taken advantage of due to their own desperate financial circumstances, the situation may be characterized as predatory. Although anyone could be a victim of predatory lending, older adults often fit the profile of having a scant (or even non-existent) credit history, low income, and financial need, all of which predatory lenders tend to seek out.

The study paper’s focus is primarily on how predatory lending may affect older homeowners, but similar issues may arise in connection with individuals who are purchasing a home and obtaining a new mortgage.

The conclusion,is that the extent to which predatory lending occurs in Canada is still largely unknown.

Senior borrowers may increasingly find themselves victims of predatory lending without legal recourse or remedy

Dazed and Confused

As we age we become vulnerable to these issues more frequently. Trust your common sense. If in doubt, don’t be shy. Go to a number of recognized banks and talk to them. Still not sure, consult with a lawyer before you sign anything. They can help you determine if what is being offered is legitimate.

If you know a neighbour or friend who you think might be experiencing a predatory action be kind, take the time to help. You may one day appreciate a similar concern.

Got a Vancouver Real Estate question? I’ll do my best to answer it. Call or send me an email. Larry

About Larry Yatkowsky

Larry is a recognized real estate expert. A veteran professional, his experienced counsel leads Vancouverites in his west side community to place their trust in a man passionate about his work. Uncompromising ethics bring a balanced approach to realizing your real estate dreams.

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*Disclaimer: Statistics Courtesy REBGV. While believed to be accurate they are not guaranteed.
**Numbers provided may vary as they are dynamically posted by the REBGV.

Reader Comments:

March 15th, 2008 at 9:14 am

This is good stuff Larry.

March 15th, 2008 at 10:44 am

I am surprised when I find seniors who have “bridge” financed a purchase only to lose out when their place doesn’t sell as quickly as hoped. It’s not exactly predatory but it hurts just as much.

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