Broker: ‘It’s a product we wish we didn’t have to sell’

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Mass-layoffs in Alberta have inspired one area professional to offer help in the form of a unique product.

First Foundation, a leading mortgage and insurance provider, is offering layoff insurance to people in Alberta.

“We’ve been getting a ton of attention and we’re barely keeping up with the lead traffic,” Gord McCallum, president of First Foundation, told MortgageBrokerNews.ca. “The commissions are quite small and we don’t even have a compensation structure right now, but we think it’s the right thing to do.”

McCallum says brokers outside his organization have contacted him with the hopes of offering it to their own clients, which is something he is considering.

And players outside the broker industry have shown interest as well.

“A Realtor in a small Alberta town that is resource-driven contacted us,” McCallum said. “He offered to pay the first year for clients who purchase a home.”

According to Stats Canada, Alberta posted 11,600 fewer full-time positions, month-over-month in October.

Alberta’s economy contracted by around 1% last year, according to a report by ATB Financial, and is expected to see a similar contraction this year before giving away to slight growth by the end of the 2016.

Oil prices, meanwhile, are not expected to show any recovery until the end of the year.

ATP also expects the unemployment rate – which currently sits at 7% – to continue rising.

And a job loss is one of the main reasons someone may default on their insurance.

“It’s a product we wish we didn’t have to sell,” McCallum said. “We help people get into homes and it’s a tragedy to see them lose them.”
 

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