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Mortgage Broker News | 05 Nov 2018, 12:24 AM Agree 0
A couple of mortgage brokers refused to answer MortgageBrokerNews.ca’s questions
  • Rachelle Berube | 05 Nov 2018, 10:35 AM Agree 0
    I did some research into Fortress and found that some of their projects had 306% loan to value mortgages taken out on their properties the date of purchase. I also met with a BDMC salesman called Carl Steritt. I was told I could get an appraisal, and everything was secured by a mortgage. Fortress used Letters of Opinion issued by a appraiser stating what the property was worth after it was built up not a current appraisal, but this was meant to confuse investors who would think it was a legit actual appraisal as it was issued by an appraiser on their letterhead. Once you were in their sales channel they would arrange for you to meet their professionals to do your due diligence. Mortgage brokers were paid lucrative 10% commissions to sell Fortress products. Bottom line is mortgage brokers had easy access to check the sales price and existing mortgages
    • Rick Cauvier | 04 Dec 2018, 07:45 AM Agree 0
      Rachelle. I also got into this scam to the tune of $248000.00. I want to get as many victims as possible to speak out but i don't know how to do it.
    • BorisBoris | 17 Jan 2019, 06:09 PM Agree 0
      Regrettably, I am a victim of this scam as well.
      Invested in Collier2, Union Waterfront. Looks like my money gone here.
      Possible Soba2 is OK. No idea.
      I agree we should unite and work with the province to keep accountable on FSCO lack of actions
  • Ron Butler | 05 Nov 2018, 11:08 AM Agree 1
    You don't know whether to laugh or cry when you read some of this. A duly registered mortgage agent in the province of Ontario refers a compliant about a mortgage she clearly arranged or recommended to Fortress? Like she is not involved?

    So no due diligence, no follow-up, no level of responsibility whatsoever, just: Call Fortress. This is what is wrong with the Regulator in Ontario. Every single one of the mortgage agents, brokers, brokerages and Principal Brokers of those organizations who sold Fortress products or referred clients to Fortress and received payment for same should ALL be under investigation and really should be suspended from operations during the investigation.
    • Brian cauvier | 12 Jan 2019, 04:37 AM Agree 0
      you are right Ron i got caught in this too and thay should all be held accountable
  • Michele Hall | 05 Nov 2018, 11:26 AM Agree 0
    For the investor that was in the mortgage industry , you could not have been experienced in mortgages. I read the prospectus supplied to me by my private investors, I could see the risks, and that their investment was going into soft costs of projects . I advised them that at their stage in life this was way too risky . As for the police officers that is terrible to take away their retirement as well . Investors should always always always have their lawyer review any investment. A good broker will send the package to the lawyer.
    • Ron Butler | 05 Nov 2018, 12:41 PM Agree 0
      Michelle, Fortress did an end run around your perfectly logical suggestion to show the deal to a lawyer. Fortress told every investor that they would see an independent lawyer to sign the docs but what they didn't tell the investor was that because Fortress PAID that independent lawyer the ILR was false so the clients ended up with zero case against the so call independent lawyer and the Law Society. Pure fraud from start to finish.
  • Devastated Customer | 05 Nov 2018, 03:02 PM Agree 0
    We too have invested over $215,000 with Fortress since June 2012. The project should have been completed April 2016. I have been checking with Fortress (now bankrupt)and Faan Mortgage in Toronto. Still nothing! No one has answers. WE were told we would be issued a T5 slip to show we received RRIF money from the trust company (even though no money will be given to us)and we have to claim we received the money when we file our taxes. What nonsense -that`s fraud!!! We do not know what will happen as we really need that money since we are retired. Someone help us, please!!
    • Saddest person in the world | 06 Nov 2018, 03:23 PM Agree 0
      I'm on the same boat but deeper hole!!! I'm reaching out to so many people, can't hear back from anyone! It's like no one cares!!! I feel hopeless!!! Share your email, I will contact you.
    • Keep on Keeping On | 15 Dec 2018, 12:44 PM Agree 0
      Hi Devastated Customer,

      I am also an investor in projects associated with Fortress, not devasted because I am receiving information from Fortress and FAAn. Hope you are happy to know that Fortress's office is still open and you can call them. Or if you want, you can visit their office. Not sure why you think that they have been bankrupt? I am in touch with Fortress and FAAN over phone, email and public court meeting. I have four friends who have their principals returned to them plus owed interest. I am just looking forward to seeing how these projects survive in these harsh conditions that changed sharply in 2017. I am sure you will feel much better if you keep trying and knowing that someone will answer. If you want, I can help you if you share emails.
  • answer guy | 06 Nov 2018, 01:11 AM Agree 0
    all your eggs in one basket?
    sounds like gambling to me
    • Ron Butler | 07 Nov 2018, 11:19 AM Agree 0
      Not completely fair, yes, people need to be ultra careful once they go outside mainstream investing but this was sold as a debt instrument like a bond and the promoters always mentioned the sales people held government licenses and independent lawyers would also provide individualized, learned opinions on the mortgage investments and the lawyers did in fact do that. This was way beyond and Rah-Rah Pyramid sales madness this was well organised fraud.
  • Saddest Person In the World | 06 Nov 2018, 03:20 PM Agree 0
    I was fooled into this scam, me and my partner invested $500k into this scam because we were assured this was a safe investment! We investors need to unite and see if we have any rights against these frauds!! Let's build a group of defaulted investors!!
    • same boat | 01 Dec 2018, 02:01 PM Agree 0
      start facebook page again for all!
    • Eric | 03 Dec 2018, 05:51 PM Agree 0
      Join us... "Investors" of Fortress Developments and BDMC at FB. We are rallying all victims against the useless regulatory body of Ontario known as FSCO and also against FB.
    • Down but not Out | 03 Dec 2018, 07:51 PM Agree 0
      Please check out Facebook page “Investors” of Fortress Developments and BDMC. We are all investors that have lost money and need to reach out to everyone that has lost money so we can move forward in a group to make more noise.
    • Bitter&Twisted | 16 Dec 2018, 03:47 AM Agree 0
      Sad as it may sound, all of the noise will get you nowhere. The money is gone. The faster you get over it, the better. The only thing worse is dragging yourself thru the mud for the next three years and getting nothing for your efforts. Unlikey anyone will be held accountable for this... Usually just a fine that OSC gets. BTW, these things happen regularly.
    • Luzette | 16 Jan 2019, 07:55 PM Agree 0
      we should get this on the media like cp24 because clients like myself are just finding out now as our investment doesn't mature till september 2019 we called early to check in on our investment and realized how we were duped
  • Matt | 07 Nov 2018, 07:30 AM Agree 0
    The worst part of this is that the receiver (faan) will have priorities for their fees before any investors. Expect to lose 30 to 50% in any recovered dollars to them prior to seeing any money.


    • Ron Butler | 07 Nov 2018, 11:13 AM Agree 1
      Oh no, this will be a total loss for investors. Zero cents on the dollar.
    • Keep on Keeping On | 15 Dec 2018, 12:50 PM Agree 0
      Hi Matt, I thought the same way, however, to my knowledge, Braestone has 80% returned.
  • Carole | 08 Nov 2018, 09:18 AM Agree 0
    We first heard of Fortress when a respected Ottawa Real Estate group endorsed their projects and invited Jawad Rathmore as a speaker to one of their Investment Seminars. Given that this Real Estate group is well known and respected, plus personal assurances from Mr. Rathmore that the Capital Pointe project in Regina was safe and secure due to their in-depth planning and research, in addition to their successful track record, we felt that investing in a syndicated mortgage met our low risk criteria for investments. That was back in 2011 and as of today the project is no further along than a hole in the ground. After years of mis-information and deception from the brokers we fear that once everything is said and done we will lose our $100k investment. In addition to the financial loss there's the ongoing anxiety associated with continually trying to get realistic status information on our investment.
    • Divine Helper | 16 Dec 2018, 03:55 AM Agree 0
      Carole, as long as you refer to them as respected, so will everyone else. Call them out or say goodbye to your $100K.
  • Michele Hall | 12 Nov 2018, 01:28 PM Agree 0
    Ron, why would you not enlist your lawyer to review everything before you invest . If you work with a lawyer supplied by Fortress that should be your first red flag. I feel awful for the investors who lost everything. However did anyone seek legal advise outside of the Fortress group ? Not the lawyer supplied by them ?
    • El Bastardo | 13 Nov 2018, 09:21 AM Agree 0
      Part of the tactic was to convey to you that there was independent legal advice. Why would retail investors assume they are required to seek out their own legal counsel on investment products? You don't do this with conventional products (mutual funds, equities, etc). The way it was marketed to retail investors primarily was to show you that there was a pseudo due diligence and that they 'looked out for your best interests'. I know because I interviewed several brokers that marketed this stuff. It was all smoke and mirrors with meaningless and distorted comparisons to other investment products. The brokers were trained to provide comparisons to equity markets (e.g, TSX primarily...that is a few key sectors with more volatility than the S&P for example), to these 'fixed rate safe returns of 8% with security'...and none understood that there was no volatility with these products because guess what? There was no secondary market. No pricing = no volatility. The argument made by these brokers on several occasions was that: why pay for costly legal expenses when the borrower covers the costs? Of course you will not pay for legal expenses. You don't for others, so why this one? Especially since it was marketed as a conventional retail investment product....through registered accounts on top of it.
    • Ron Butler | 22 Nov 2018, 12:02 PM Agree 1
      I really do get what you are saying Michelle but we have to be careful not to be victim blaming, these products were a fraud from day one. They were carefully crafted and designed to fool people, let's face it if you were sent to see a real lawyer who was portrayed as YOUR INDEPENDENT ADVISER, if it was your first time with private mortgages you would likely think you were good.
  • Feel so violated | 14 Nov 2018, 08:28 PM Agree 1
    If you have lost money please join Facebook group "Investors" of Fortress development
  • kai | 20 Nov 2018, 11:20 AM Agree 0
    I am an investor also in same boat, we invest over 200K in fortress 3 projects,one of them is power sell end of Nov 20 2018, what can we do now?
  • kai | 20 Nov 2018, 11:25 AM Agree 0
    I can't find the group of "Investors" of Fortress development in facebook, we should have a group for us to discuss and maintain our rights
    • | 20 Dec 2018, 06:33 AM Agree 0
      Try, investors of fortress
  • | 29 Nov 2018, 07:11 PM Agree 0
    Finally people are reaching out. After months of calling anyone and everyone and getting the run around it's nice to know we are not the only ones. We could have written any one of these posts as our story is identical. What we want to know is when are these fraudsters going to jail?