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Wednesday , 22 February 2017

Monthly Archives: July 2015

Mortgage brokers stung by fraud allegations

The mortgage broker industry has been quick to distance itself from the fraud scandal at Home Trust. Home Trust delisted forty-five of its brokers after evidence of falsified documentation—“bad paper”—came to light. Strangely, the whistle blower who tipped the company off about the falsified documents chose to do so anonymously, by way of a letter to the Home Capital Group board of directors. Home Trust is a wholly owned subsidiary of Home Capital Group. It is one of the country’s largest alternative mortgage lenders. It’s difficult to get a firm grip on what actually happened, and who is to blame, but it seems that a few brokers passed along, unwittingly, ... Read More »

Condo board directors need guidance in ethical behaviour

It’s important to remember that people who serve as condo board members are volunteers. They aren’t paid for their services, and they have a lot of responsibility. Being a diligent board member can take up quite a bit of time, and there can be conflict with owners and others when a board’s decisions aren’t popular. Board members sometimes have to be thick-skinned and sensitive at the same time. It is asking a lot of them. Nevertheless, like others who hold some form of public office, board members should be held to high standards of ethics. In the course of their work on the board, they will make decisions that involve ... Read More »

Smog vacuum would clean the air, create unique jewellery

Is a giant air purifier the answer to the world’s air pollution problem? Maybe not, but it makes an intriguing side story. Such interesting things come out of the Netherlands these days—the solar panel-lined roadway, the modular plastic roadway, the LED-illuminated bike path—and now there’s another to add to the list: the giant smog-sucking vacuum tower, also known as the Smog Free Tower. The designer behind it is Daan Roosengaarde of Rotterdam, who describes himself as being fascinated by “the landscape of the future.” This latest concept is simple: build enough of these vacuum towers, which work the same way as air purifiers in the home, and we can rid ... Read More »

Orderly adjustment called for as TD assesses Toronto housing market

It isn’t easy to predict with certainty how markets, including housing markets, will perform over the long term. The difficulty can be seen in comments made by the governor of the US Federal Reserve, Susan Bies, in October of 2006. She told the British Bankers’ Association that the US housing market was going through a “fairly orderly” correction, as investors in that market tried to sell, and excess demand had turned to excess supply. She added that she could not rule out a “more disorderly correction” in the US housing sector. More disorderly indeed. In some US cities, property values plummeted by 60, even 70 per cent over the next ... Read More »

No end of problems for much-mocked London skyscraper

One of the most talked about buildings in the world these days, and not in a good way, is a thirty-seven storey tower in London, England. It’s curvaceous and shiny and looks a lot like a certain hand-held device for communication. And that is what the locals were calling it while it was under construction, the “walkie-talkie.” That was before the building revealed a more dangerous aspect of its design. It seems that the building’s curved glass façade focuses the sunlight like a giant magnifying lens. The beam of light, or “death ray,” so created has been said to be hot enough to “melt” cars in the street below. One ... Read More »

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