Why 1 in 5 professionals could be a risk for lenders

by Steve Randall21 Aug 2018

Thousands of Canadian professionals may present a risk to mortgage lenders due to the transient nature of their work.

A report published Tuesday by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives Ontario warns that despite high levels of education, credentials, skills, and even experience, 22% of Canadian professionals are in precarious jobs.

That means no steady income, pension, sick pay and benefits.

“We tend to think of precarious work as something that happens in low-wage, low-skill jobs, but the findings from this national survey suggest that there is no safe harbour. Even highly educated professionals are experiencing economic insecurity and unstable working conditions,” says Ricardo Tranjan, CCPA-Ontario senior researcher.

The CPPA survey found that although more than a quarter of professionals are in full-time jobs, 37% work contract-to-contract. A third work part-time and most (60%) have no pension, RRSP, or sick pay.

Women more likely to be in precarious jobs
Most of those professionals identified as in precarious jobs are women (60%) along with those over 55. There is a higher share of those working in the private sector (40% vs 40% public sector).

Those working in education, healthcare, and business, finance and administration roles, are more likely to be in the ‘at risk’ group.

“You would think the combination of education, age and experience would buffer professionals from unstable jobs, but all the hallmarks of precarious work are creeping into professions,” says CCPA-Ontario Director Trish Hennessy. “The survey reflects some deep-seated concerns about economic insecurity. The majority (57%) of professionals without full-time work prefer better job stability and 43% of them say the lack of stability keeps them up at night.”

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