Agent to pay back $95K to homeless woman in failed condo deal

by Ephraim Vecina on 19 Dec 2016
In the wake of a CBC News expose, a Toronto-based real estate agent promised to pay back the $95,000 he borrowed from a woman he was previously searching a tenant for.
Chaim “Howard” Smilovici said that his wife has already given Rita Fulciniti’s legal representative $5,000 to cover part of the debt, and promised to supply the remaining $90,000 by February once his wife sells her Bathurst Street condo.
“I am not a thief,” Smilovici told CBC Toronto. “My wife had nothing to do with it but is helping make restitution.”
Zeppieri and Associates, which represented Fulciniti in the failed condo deal, confirmed the receipt of a $5,000 bank draft from Smilovici’s wife on Thursday (December 15). Until that day, Smilovici had not paid back any portion of the loan.
Fulciniti said that she lost a condo—which she already put a down payment for—near Islington Avenue and Bloor Street when the agent did not return the money. Fulciniti added that the $95,000 was her life savings.
“I don't want $5,000,” according to Fulciniti, who now lives in a homeless shelter. “He owes me all the interest, everything he put me out up until the day he pays me back all of it.”
In mid-2015, Fulciniti signed a loan agreement with Smilovici that would compel the agent to pay back the $95,000. The condition will also require the agent to include a $5,000 cash bonus on top of the repayment, along with a 12 per cent annual return.

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