Must-Make Year-End Tax Moves

Must-Make Year-End Tax MovesWe may be approaching the most wonderful time of the year, but December is also when to make moves that could save you money come tax time. “Most people think of tax time as April, but it’s really all year long,” says Caroline Battista, a senior tax analyst with H&R Block Canada. “You want to be keeping your receipts all year long, but there are few things you can do at…

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How to Put Your Investments in the Right Accounts

How to Put Your Investments in the Right AccountsIt is not uncommon for individuals who have saved for some time to have multiple investment accounts. Often, they will have one in their own name, one in a holding company’s name, and at least one more registered account such as an RRSP, RESP or TFSA. The rules differ depending on age and other factors, but the key shared element among registered accounts (so long as money is not withdrawn…

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Confusion Aside a TFSA is Still The Best Tax Shelter in Town

Confusion Aside a TFSA is Still The Best Tax Shelter in TownFive years after their introduction, there still appears to be rampant confusion about tax free savings accounts. Not just about the cumbersome rules on replacing withdrawn funds, but about the very nature of the TFSA itself. Newcomers often end up in default TFSA plans offered by the nearest financial institution, believing they can hold nothing but interest-bearing vehicles like GICs. Since interest rates have been pitifully low over the five-year…

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How to Invest in Retirement

How to Invest in RetirementWhat happens to your RRSP when you retire? Prior to retirement, people maximize their contributions to their RRSPs, top up their children’s RESPs and put whatever is left over into their TFSAs and non-registered accounts. Once they hit retirement, the mystery about investing their savings to draw an income while unravelling these plans begins, and the biggest concern they face becomes not outliving their money. There has been a great…

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RRSP Ages and Stages

RRSP Ages and StagesEveryone knows it’s RRSP season, but what’s less obvious is how to best direct your contributions over the years. Different ages and life stages call for different strategies. There’s an overarching theme, though: anything you can put toward your retirement is a good thing. “When it comes to contributions, it’s a journey, not a sprint,” says ?Wade Stayzer, vice president of retail banking and investment services at Ontario’s Meridian Credit…

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Take Full Advantage of Tax-Free Savings Accounts

Take Full Advantage of Tax-Free Savings AccountsRecent data indicate that Canadians are saving more. Statistics Canada reports the Household Savings Rate is currently 5.4%, a 0.4% increase from the previous year. Likewise, a recent BMO Bank of Montreal study found that 48% of Canadians are now investing in tax-free savings accounts, a 23% increase from 2012. It’s good that Canadians are saving, but unfortunately too few are making the most of it. Part of the problem…

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Canadians Just Dont Understand TFSAs

Canadians Just Dont Understand TFSAsTax-free savings accounts (TFSA) may be increasingly popular, but they also have a lot of Canadians scratching their heads. Forty-eight per cent of Canadians have a TFSA, up from 23 per cent in 2012, according to Bank of Montreal’s recently released Tax Free Savings Account (TFSA) report. However, there’s confusion surrounding the details: the poll found that just 19 per cent of Canadians know the annual contribution limit, 10 per…

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6 Rules for Novice Investors

6 Rules for Novice InvestorsI recently began volunteering with an organization called Girls Inc., one of whose valuable programs that teaches teen girls the basics of investing and money management. By the end of the program, the girls will be competently managing a full-blown investment portfolio. Sadly, that’s something that most adults are unable to do. Most novice investors who come to me for advice have usually been burned badly by trying to trade…

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What to do with $10,000 Right Now

What to do with $10,000 Right NowFor most people, getting a windfall of $10,000-through an inheritance, a severance payment or a small lottery win on the weekly Scratch ‘N Win card-can make a huge difference in their lives. Whether you invest in your small business, save it towards a long-term goal like retirement, pay off hefty consumer debt or help your kids with their college education bills, doing so can speed up your journey down the…

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How to Make the Most of Your Tax-Free Account

How to Make the Most of Your Tax-Free AccountAlmost half of all Canadians have opened a tax-free savings account, according to a survey released last week by CIBC. That’s a remarkable take-up considering that TFSAs haven’t even been around for four years. That’s the good news. The bad news is that about half of those people aren’t actively contributing. According to the survey, 47 per cent have not put any money into the plan this year. What’s more,…

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