Tag Archives: Consumer Proposals


Ask the Trustee – May Edition

Licensed trustee Blair Mantin answers your questions about how to manage debts, including options such as Credit Counselling, Consumer Proposals and Bankruptcy in BC! 

Q: Near the end of the month I’m out of money. Where am I going wrong?

A:  Here are some frequent areas a budget can “leak” from:

Paying more than needed: Cell phone and cable packages can be costly, be sure you need AND use all you pay for.

Getting charged fees: Extra ATM withdrawals, late payments or bank account fees add up quickly. Plan ahead for withdrawals and check your bank account for better options.

Interest build-up: Using credit without paying in full always costs. Avoid using it unless you can pay right away.

Not planning ahead: Irregular expenses occur; save a small consistent amount on a monthly basis instead of having to pay for them as a lump sum.

If debt isn’t in your budget, contact Sands & Associates, we can help you get out of debt.  Book a free, confidential consultation today.


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Blair Mantin Weighs In on Payday Loans – Globe and Mail Reports

As The Globe and Mail series on Canadians’ debt dependence continues, Sands & Associates Vice-President and licensed trustee Blair Mantin weighed in on the debate surrounding payday loans.  While some liken payday loans to predatory loan sharks, and others a crucial fix in a pinch, the numbers are in and the share of Canadians using payday loans has grown rapidly over the years.  According to a Financial Consumer Agency of Canada survey, the portion of individuals who claim they or a family member have used a payday loan service in the last year has more than doubled, to 4.3% last year from 1.9% in 2009.

In British Columbia specifically, the number of payday loan borrowers climbed 35% from a year earlier to nearly 200,000 last year; average loan amounts have also risen.  The “crack cocaine” of the debt and credit world, as Mantin candidly states, as people will often carry a number of payday loans from different lenders as the cycle of high-cost borrowing escalates.

Ontario trustee Doug Hoyes was also quoted in the article, noting a similar trend in Ontario.  He noted that 18% of people filing insolvency (bankruptcy, consumer proposal) in 2013 and 2014 had payday loans, up from 12% over the prior two-year period.

Read the full article here.

To discuss your debt options with a licensed Trustee at no cost or obligation, please contact us to book a free, confidential consultation.


Sands & Associates Welcomes New Associate Raj Hara

As we enter our 26th year as British Columbia’s largest firm of Credit Counsellors, Proposal Administrators and licensed Trustees in Bankruptcy, Sands & Associates would like to extend a warm welcome to Raj Hara as an Associate of the firm.

Raj is a Chartered Professional Accountant, Certified Management Accountant and Chartered Insolvency and Restructuring Professional with a broad background in banking, finance, accounting, insolvency and restructuring matters.

As a licensed Proposal Administrator and Trustee in Bankruptcy, Raj offers financial options and assistance to individuals and businesses in our Surrey, Kamloops, Kelowna, Nanaimo and Victoria offices.  Raj’s past professional experience as a Trustee, Receiver, Monitor, Financial Consultant and Forensic Accountant brings great understanding and know-how to the residents of the communities we serve.

Sands & Associates is focused exclusively on helping individuals and small businesses with their debt solution needs, including personal bankruptcies and consumer proposals. Since 1990 we’ve helped tens of thousands of people resolve their financial troubles and achieve a fresh financial start.  We operate throughout British Columbia’s lower mainland, Vancouver Island and Thompson-Okanagan regions and are proud to be recognized as a multi-year Consumer Choice Award winner.

Welcome Raj!

To meet with Raj or another Sands & Associates representative in a local office in your area, please contact us to arrange a free, confidential consultation.

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Blair Mantin Quoted in Globe and Mail: Canada’s Borrowing Binge

Sands & Associates Vice-President and licensed Trustee Blair Mantin spoke with The Globe and Mail in a recent series exploring Canadians’ growing dependence on debt.  The in-depth series focuses on the lifeline status debt has evolved into for Canadians, to meet the demands of home ownership, education and even general living costs.

As Blair shared with The Globe and Mail, the volume of those seeking relief of unmanageable debts has risen steadily over last year.  Seniors, young families who have purchased homes and skilled trades people employed in the oil sector are among those financially at-risk groups.

Far from budgetary or money management issues stereotypically thought to be the catalyst of financial breakdown, the trigger that forces individuals to look at professional debt assistance is often a life event such as job loss or relationship breakdown.

A lack of savings and easy access to credit often compounds financial difficulties for people at or in retirement age, as well as the burden of supporting adult children and living on a low fixed-income.

Read the full article here.

To discuss your debt options with a licensed Trustee at no cost or obligation, please contact us to book a free, confidential consultation.


Joe Debtor: 2015 Study Findings

Ontario Trustees Hoyes Michalos recently released their 2015 “Joe Debtor” study, exposing concerning trends for those financially at-risk and examining why and how Canadians face economic distress.

Some encouraging figures emerged from the 2015 Joe Debtor study, such as a decrease in the average number of credit cards and credit card debt amounts insolvent debtors carried.

Conversely, the instance of fast instalment loans increased five-fold and the percentage of individuals carrying payday loans also rose.  Single parents, individuals carrying student debts and Canadians over the age of 50 were found to be the most at-risk groups facing insolvency.  According to the study, a typical insolvent debtor carries a staggering $56,545 of unsecured debt.


Click the infographic to enlarge (Source: www.hoyes.com)

To read the full 2015 Joe Debtor study please click here.

To arrange a free, confidential consultation regarding your debt management options, please contact us.


Sands & Associates Welcomes Jeff Ayre!

Sands & Associates would like to extend a warm welcome to Jeff Ayre!  Jeff has joined the team of Sands & Associates’ credit counsellors and Trustees and is available to assist individuals inquiring into assistance and guidance with their debt options in both our Surrey and downtown Vancouver offices.

Jeff is a Chartered Professional Accountant and a member of the Canadian Association of Insolvency and Restructuring professionals, bringing over 20 years’ experience in the field of insolvency and debt restructuring to Sands & Associates.  Over the years Jeff has administered multiple engagements under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act and the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act, with experience in both consumer and corporate matters.

Celebrating our 25th Anniversary this year, Sands & Associates was founded in 1990 and operates from 12 offices throughout BC’s lower mainland and Vancouver Island regions.  We are British Columbia’s largest firm of Credit Counsellors, Proposal Administrators and Bankruptcy Trustees.  With more than 50 people available to help both individuals and small businesses find financial solutions, we believe our empathetic, non-judgmental approach sets us apart and has helped us become the Trustee firm of choice within the communities we serve, in addition to being Consumer Choice Award winners for multiple consecutive years.

To meet with Jeff Ayre, or another representative from Sands & Associates in person to discuss how you can achieve a fresh financial start, please contact us for a free, confidential consultation.