Submitted by Jasmina on Mon, 2007-01-01 18:16.

Better Business Bureau - How safe are you from identity fraud?Real Estate fraud is a broad term used to describe the different types of fraud:

Mortgage Fraud

Mortgage fraud is a type of real estate fraud that most often hurts the financial institutions that lend money for purchasing property. The most common form of mortgage fraud involves fraudsters acquiring property and then artificially increasing the property’s value through a series of sales and resales between the fraudster and someone in cooperation with them. A mortgage is then secured on the property based on the price that has been artificially inflated.

Title Fraud

Title fraud is a different type of real estate fraud that most often hurts individual homeowners. In comparison to the more than two million real estate transactions that occur each year in the province, there are a limited number of cases of title fraud. The most common forms of title fraud involve fraudsters using stolen identities or forged documents to transfer a registered owner’s title to himself or herself without the registered owner’s knowledge. The fraudster then obtains a mortgage on this property and once the funds are advanced on the mortgage, he or she disappears. This type of fraud is also sometimes referred to as “mortgage fraud.”

Consumer Protection Guide - The Ministry of Government Services (MGS) of Ontario urges Homeowners to protect their property by protecting themselves from Identity Theft!

What is Identity Theft?

Submitted by Jasmina on Wed, 2006-12-13 01:17.

YORK REGIONAL - Regional News Story: A provincial or national registry of marijuana grow operations would offer a false sense of security to those who rely on it, York Regional Police Chief Armand La Barge said. A major problem with that kind of warning system, is grow-ops that have not been discovered by police would not be part of the registry, Chief La Barge said. Instead, Chief La Barge supports Provincial Bill 128, which allows police to inform municipalities a grow-op has been discovered and requires city administrators to ensure an inspection is done to make sure a home used as grow-op falls under the building code before it is resold.

A recent phenomenon is people purchasing known grow-op homes at reduced prices and refurbishing them to make substantial profits in a resale. That could lead to criminals showing up at the address believing it's still a grow-op, which could be dangerous for the new homeowners, Chief La Barge said. York's top cop suggests a thorough home inspection before buying goes a long way to expose past criminal uses.

Submitted by Jasmina on Sun, 2006-12-10 00:09.

CTV Toronto: Opposition Leader John Tory wants the government to establish a provincewide registry for homes used to grow marijuana. More than 450 marijuana grow ops have been uncovered in Ontario so far this year, and Tory said the province has a responsibility to protect families who either live near the illegal operations or may move into the dwellings... Liberals have passed legislation allowing hydro companies to cut off electricity to suspected grow ops without notice, and allowing police to seize assets and use the proceeds to fight crime.

Submitted by Jasmina on Thu, 2006-10-12 01:03.

New law steps up fight against grow ops: The Law Enforcement and Forfeited Property Management Statute Law Amendment Act 2005, “requires a local municipality to ensure that a building is inspected if it is notified by a police force that the building contained a marijuana grow operation.”

Marijuana grow houses are typically filled with mould and have faulty electrical wiring because circuits are tampered with as growers bypass metres measuring power consumption. However, it can be difficult for REALTORS® to identify a former grow op if tell-tale signs have been covered up. Depending on how new the operation is, mould may not appear for months or years.

While grow ops often require extensive cleanup and repair, it is possible that these repairs were never made and the real damage is hidden. Noticeable signs that you may be dealing with a former grow op include:

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