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When is the best time to kick in my CPP?

on Sun, 01/05/2014 - 13:15
I have been chatting with a lot more baby boomers in the last couple of years, as more clients refer their parents, aunties and uncles to me. A portion of them had already retired and some of them are approaching retirement age. One of the common mistakes I gathered from the seniors I talked to, is kicked in their CPP way too early. You might ask: what do you mean? Don't you start your CPP at age 65? Normally, yes. However, not too many people know that you can actually choose when to kick in your CPP.
Then, the next question arise: why do I want to delay in applying my CPP?

Unlocking your locked-in funds

on Sat, 01/04/2014 - 13:34
Started January 1, 2014, if you wish to apply to unlock funds from your Locked in Retirement Accounts (LIRAs), Life Income Funds (LIFs) and Locked in Retirement Income Funds (LRIFs) governed under Ontario Pension Legislation, you will have to submit your unlocking requests directly to your financial institutions, and not to the Financial Services Commission of Ontario (FSCO). After January 1, unlocking requests submitting directly to the FSCO will be returned.
You can unlock your locked in funds if:
- you have a life expectancy of two years or less
- age 55 or older and the value of

Why you should NOT consider reverse mortgages

on Sun, 12/29/2013 - 12:18
Due to the shortfall of retirement needs, long term care needs and the sudden evaporated of retirees' retirement assets (which lots retirees switched to extreme conservative investment options after the 2008 market meltdown, gives them no chance to recoup their losses), I have heard more and more seniors are considering reverse mortgages.
Definition: also referred to as a Home Equity Conversion Loan, reverse mortgage is a financial instrument that allows seniors to access the equity in their home without income or credit qualifications.

Year-end financial moves

on Mon, 12/16/2013 - 12:33

I was actually trying to avoid this topic for the longest time, since there are already so many of them out there, I thought my readers would have more than enough information needed regarding what they need to do by the year-end to make sure they get what they need for the 2013 calendar year...

Turns out, still lots of people seems not too sure what is needed and why they need to take these deadlines seriously. Remember, CRA only looks at the date, they won't forgive you simply because you were "not aware" it should be done before the year-end.

So, while we are entering the last 2 weeks of Dec

How to choose the best suitable health care plan

on Sat, 11/30/2013 - 20:44

Recently, I have got quite some quote requests on health and dental plans. Not only because health care costs are getting more and more expensive, partly because lots of companies had been gradually reduce (or even cut) their group benefits; and the other part is, of course, we have more seniors retiring and that they no longer covered by their group benefits.

In general, health and dental plan consists of 3 areas: extended health care (Chiropractor, Naturopath, Registered Massage Therapist, Acupuncturist, Physiotherapist and so on), dental and drug.

Why you want to stop "maxing out your RRSP"

on Thu, 11/07/2013 - 22:53

Since the federal government pushed out "RRSP" in 1957, due to the fact that we get tax deduction from contributions we make, the banks and majority of financial advisors had been telling their clients to contribute into RRSP. RRSP, as the name suggested, was to promote savings for retirement by employees and self-employed people, because the federal government knew already back then, the CPP system will not be able to support all the retirees down the road. So, they came up with "tax deduction" as an incentive, to attract people to "save for retirement".

However, as time goes along, getting

Tips to Help Startups Hit the Ground Running

on Thu, 11/07/2013 - 06:34

Eve came to me and offered her write-up to as guest post. I open and welcome any like-minded to do the same, always great to learn from one another :) Enjoy!

Business startups in Canada face a frequently bewildering array of financial challenges. These can however be resolved into the main areas of tight cashflow, under-capitalization and financial restrictions in the shorter term. Despite these hurdles, the good news is that over 80 per cent of start-ups in Canada manage to keep going past the one year mark.  

There is a sting in the tail, however.

Time to raise your voice

on Fri, 10/25/2013 - 12:07

Some of you may know, the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) is considering the future of embedded compensation, and there are factions that advocate banning this model.

We, advisors, believe that market forces should dictate how an advisor chooses to run their business and get compensated for their services. This is not about defending one model over another. The choice to run our practice, whether fee-based, commission-based or both, should be left entirely to us. More importantly, you, the investors should preserve your right to choose the structure that best meets your needs. 


Try to trust your advisor, more

on Wed, 10/16/2013 - 19:30
Sometimes I feel really disappointing when prospects (or even clients) under estimate what we, advisors, can do for them and keep thinking we can't help them in anything if they don't have money (or they need the money to "spend").
Of course, it is a lot harder to try to turn around if you don't earn enough or you have limited assets, but that doesn't mean we can't do anything for you, as we, advisors often have different strategies to help you to stretch your dollars (that is even more important when you don't have enough money).
Here are a few examples:
1. a client who had $65k in

Classic question: RRSP, RESP or TFSA??

on Sat, 10/05/2013 - 11:35
*Updated: Nov 20, 2016
We all have limited resources... Lots of people asking the same question over and over again, among retirement savings, education saving for kids and tax free savings, which is the better way to save?
The answer is: it depends. I know, I know, you hate this answer. However, you need to understand everyone has a different situation so there is not ONE right answer to everybody.
Here is a list of things help you to decide which way is best for you:
- if you have lots of RRSP room and have no pension plan from your work place, RRSP might be a good choice;
- if