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Investing

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How is everyone doing? If you’re not sure how to answer that because you run through every single emotion in a day, well, same. This world right now…it’s a lot. I’ve taken some time off from the blog in the last bit, firstly because I was traveling in February, and recently because I just don’t know what to say. And that’s kind of why I’m checking in today. None of us have answers right now, but maintaining ties is especially important right now. Where I’m At The bf and I are currently sharing the dining room table while we both work from home. We are both lucky to be able to keep working and not have our incomes negatively impacted. We are staying home as much as possible, only venturing out to walk the dog and grab groceries when absolutely necessary. Other than a bit of cabin fever, we are…

I don’t know if you guys have heard, but the world is in shambles, and everyone is freaking the heck out. At least that’s what the news and social media would have you think. I’m not saying they are wrong. The coronavirus is having a significant negative impact on financial markets, as you’ve likely seen if you’ve taken a look at your investments. However, doom and gloom headlines mean more clicks and clicks are money, so… Investing is scary. You are putting your money at the mercy of the markets, and when we see collapses like last week, it wreaks havoc with our emotions. All of us. I don’t care how cool some people play it through their not so humble brags about buying opportunities. Rational or not, we all feel losses. Money is an emotional beast! The Impact of COVID-19 So why is the market crashing? It all has…

For Canadian investors, the new year brings more contribution room to your tax-free savings account. Kind of a big deal, and great news for those of us who want to shelter more of our money from tax. When TFSA’s were first introduced, they were a good idea, but the impact was small because you could only contribute $5,000 per year. Now that they’ve been around for a decade, that amount has continued to grow, and the 2020 TFSA total contribution room is $69,500. Factor in investment returns, and there are more than a few people who are looking at six-figure TFSAs. If you haven’t opened a TFSA or aren’t sure if it’s right for you, then you’re in the right place. I’m going to tell you why it’s such a valuable tool and how maxing out your 2020 TFSA is almost always a good idea if you can. Annual Limits…

If you are from Alberta, then there’s a good chance you’ve heard the term ‘indexing’ mentioned more than once amongst all the chatter about the provincial budget. I’m not going to talk specifically about the budget. There are significant cuts, many in areas I don’t believe deserved them, and overall I’m struggling to see the upside. That is all I’ll say. Instead, I want to talk about indexing because it’s an important concept to understand in way more aspects than just this budget. What is Indexing? According to Investopedia, indexing is an indicator or measure of something. Awesome. We’re all super clear and I can stop writing now right? The problem with defining indexing is that it has a few different meanings in the financial world. You can be an index investor, have an indexing clause on your pension, tax brackets can be indexed for inflation, etc. Index Investing Index…

When it comes to investing, the first thing you need to figure out is what type of account is right for you. Here in Canada, there are three primary accounts you can use. RRSPs, TFSAs, and non-registered accounts. But how do you decide which one is best? That’s one of the most common questions I get asked, and so today I’m going to break it down for you. I’m only going to look at RRSP or TFSA because non-registered investment accounts only make sense if you’ve maxed out the other two. RRSPs and TFSAs each have unique advantages and disadvantages, and your specific situation will affect which account is the right choice. Today we’re going to weigh the pros and cons to help you figure out where you should direct your money. Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) RRSPs are meant for retirement; it’s right there in the name. So that…

One of the most important things to understand about personal finance is the impact of interest rates. It plays a role in how quickly you can pay off debt but also on how fast your money will grow. If you’ve ever carried high-interest credit card debt, then you’ll know how punitive it is. And on the flip side, if you’ve ever left a sizable chunk of money in your chequing account, you’ll know that it will earn you pennies. Tracking and understanding the interest rates you are paying or earning can make a noticeable difference whether you are paying off debt or trying to grow your money. Interest Rates on Debt Unless you’ve received an interest-free loan from your very wonderful family, debt is not free. Sure you get access to money you might need, but it’s going to come at a cost. And depending on the type of debt…

Have you ever sat through a family dinner and had to listen to your parents curse the stock market? Mmhmm, me too. If they are anything like my parents, you won’t hear about how the markets are responsible for their comfortable retirement, but you will hear about how the markets are going to put them in the poor house. Flair for the dramatic? Maybe. But they aren’t entirely wrong. Down markets aren’t great for people who are nearing or in retirement because they don’t have time to recover. However, that’s not me. And I’m guessing it’s not you either. Investment advice for millennials is different. We still have time on our side, and that means down markets are actually a good thing! Don’t Believe Me, Here’s the Math! Let’s break it down by the numbers so you can see what I’m talking. Here’s the scene: we have two hypothetical 30-year-olds…

If you are new to the personal finance universe, there are a few things you will learn. First, it’s basically the same as the Marvel Universe. There’s a lot of infighting and family drama, but at the end of the day, we all just want to save the world. Totally the same thing. The second thing as that we are mildly obsessed with phrases like net worth and cash flow. So what do those mean? Why are they important? And why are PF bloggers so hooked on tracking them? Net Worth vs Cash Flow: The Official Definitions To understand why they’re both important, you first need to understand what they are. Both are metrics for measuring your money, but they are for very different things. Net worth is the number you come up with when you add together all your assets and subtract all your liabilities. It gives you an…

I’m an avid reader. I read every night before bed and listen to audiobooks when I walk to work, talk the dog out or clean the house, and there’s not much better than curling up with a good book on a Sunday afternoon. I’ll read just about anything (except fantasy, not my thing) but I have a particular interest in keeping up to date with books on money; especially Canadian personal finance books. I love finding something that tackles the topic of money in a fresh way and isn’t just a regurgitation of the same old advice. The one problem I have with books on money is that they are so often focused on the US. I get it. It’s a way bigger market. But it also means us Canadians can have a hard time seeking out books that don’t talk about 401k’s. Sure, most of the advice can cross…

If you’re still procrastinating about making an RRSP contribution for the 2018 tax year, then it’s time to get moving. The deadline is this Friday, March 1st. It’s a weird rule that’s only applicable for RRSP’s. Instead of running by the calendar year, you always have the first 60 days of the following year to make your contribution count. And trust me when I tell you that if you’ve been procrastinating, you are not alone. Now you know when you need to make your contribution, but do you know if an RRSP is the best option for you this year? The RRSP Advantage Ask just about anyone the biggest advantage of an RRSP contribution, and they’ll likely say the tax refund. And yes, that’s a nice perk, but it’s not the number one reason you should be using your RRSP. You don’t pay tax when putting money in (hence the…