What is ‘personal information’?
Personal information is information about an identifiable individual. There are many types of personal information that we may require in order to serve you better, including the following:
- Your identity or contact information such as name, address, phone number, fax number, and e-mail address,
- Your mortgage or financial history when purchasing a home from us,
- Other information incidental to purchasing a home from us (including information about professional advisors), and
- Information gathered in customer service inquiries, surveys, contests, or inquiries into our products and services.
Why do we collect, use, and disclose your personal information?
- Respond to your requests for product or service information.
- Engage in business transactions with you and provide appropriate levels of service following the completion of a transaction.
- Share personal information that we collect with other service providers, such as utilities, warranty providers, insurance companies, banking institutions and credit agencies, as well as trades and contractors, etc. who perform various functions to assist in our delivery of service to you.
- Provide personal information to third parties for legal or regulatory purposes.
- Use personal information at an aggregate level to improve the quality and efficiency of our products and services and to enhance our marketing efforts.
- Share your personal information within our enterprise (including our subsidiaries and affiliates) to cross promote products and services which we believe will be of interest to you.
- Distribute informational e-mail communications.
How do we gather your information?
We do not use techniques to collect personal information about you without your knowledge. Generally we collect personal information from you directly or from our business partners such as realtors, or lending or mortgage officers. This information could be collected in person, over the telephone, through the mail, or by electronic means.
We only collect, use, or disclose personal information for the purposes we believe you would consider appropriate under the circumstances. Your knowledge and consent are required for the collection, use, or disclosure of your personal information unless permitted or required by law. Of course, subject to reasonable and lawful limits, you can choose not to provide us with some or all of your personal information. However this choice may prevent us from providing the product, service or information that you requested.
We believe you would also expect us to contact you to advise you of new and existing services and benefits that may be of interest to you, and ask your opinion about our current performance through customer satisfaction surveys. From time to time, we will inform you of such services or contact you for your opinions via direct marketing. Direct marketing material is usually delivered to you by mail, telephone or electronic means. Unless you contact us to inform us otherwise, we will consider that you have consented to our continued use and disclosure of your information for these purposes. You may choose not to receive these offers or surveys and have your name deleted from lists.
We separately request your express consent, or rely on implied consent, in the provision of commercial electronic messages (e-mails, texts and instant messages) to you.
How do we store and protect your personal information?
Your personal information is stored in secure locations and on secure servers.
We protect your personal information by using industry standard technology and security safeguards appropriate to the sensitivity of the information, including physical, administrative and electronic controls to minimize the risk of unauthorized access, use or disclosure of or to your personal information.
Our employees are trained to appreciate the importance of privacy and confidentiality of personal information and the provisions of this policy apply to them as conditions of their employment.
Online Privacy Practices
Online Communications – In order to provide you with a service or information, you may voluntarily submit personal information to us for purposes such as asking a question, obtaining information, reviewing or downloading a publication, subscribing to a newsletter or a mail or e-mail list, participating in an event, and participating in contests and surveys. We may combine and store personal information about your use of our website and the online information you have provided with certain other personal information we may have collected.
E-mail Communications – Occasionally, we may send marketing or promotional e-mail communications to you with information that may be useful, including information about our products and services, and other third parties with whom we have a relationship. In this process, we may collect certain information such as the date/time you first opened our e-mail communications, the number of times you open our e-mail communications, the number of click-throughs per article, total click-through activity on the contents of our e-mail communications and compile generally the related statistics. We may combine and store any such information to manage and improve our e-mail communications to you. We will include instructions on how to unsubscribe and inform us of preferences if you decide you do not want to receive any future marketing or promotional e-mails from us.
Links – Our website may contain links to other websites which are provided as a convenience only. You are advised that other third party websites may have different privacy policies and practices than us, and we have no responsibility for such third party websites.