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Know Your Rights: Credit Unions in Canada

What Are Credit Unions? A credit union is a cooperative financial institution that is owned by its members. Most credit unions offer financial services that are similar to those offered by banks. For example, you can likely open a chequing or savings account at a credit union. You also have access to loans and credit services as well as many other financial services, such as credit or debit cards, depending on the particular credit union. One maj...
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Setting Financial Goals for 2018

Tips for Planning Your Financial Life Everyone has different financial goals. Some people wish to pay down their debt. Others want to build up an emergency fund or save for retirement. Whatever your financial goals may be, if you want to reach them, you’ll need to set firm goals and then come up with plans for how to achieve them. The start of a new year is a good time to review your financial goals, chart your progress, and set new goals for the...
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Getting Finances in Order in 2018 & Canada’s New Mortgage Rules

Ask the Experts: January 2018 Happy New Year! Now that 2018 is officially here, many people are looking towards the future and making plans for the next twelve months. Unfortunately, a lot of people don’t feel comfortable talking about finances, budgets, and other financial plans. However, these discussions are important. Everyone has questions, and no one has all the answers. By openly discussing your financial situation and asking questions whe...
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How to Live Debt Free in Retirement

Tips to Help You Live Debt Free in Retirement Most people hope for a retirement that is relaxing and low stress. However, if you have a lot of debt heading into retirement, it can be the complete opposite. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Here are some tips that will help you live debt free in retirement and enjoy yourself more. Try to Payoff Your Mortgage Before Retirement Heading into retirement with a mortgage can be tough. While you may ha...
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Know Your Rights: Mortgages

Understanding your Rights When You Get a Mortgage in Canada Congratulations, you’ve found your dream home and you’re ready to sign the deal and move in! First, you’ll likely need financing. When you’re getting a mortgage, it’s important that you don’t get too wrapped up in the prospect of buying a new home and forget that you have rights. Federally regulated financial institutions are required to provide you with certain information in writing on...
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Saving for your Child's Education

Tips to Help You Save for your Child’s Education Postsecondary education costs have increased a lot in the last decade or so. According to a Statistics Canada report released in 2016, Canadian full-time students in undergraduate programs paid an average of $6,373 in tuition fees for the 2016/2017 school year. This is up 2.8% from the 2015/2016 school year and about 40% more than tuition cost ten years ago. The rising costs of tuition mean that mo...
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How to Celebrate Valentine’s Day Without Overspending

Having a Memorable Valentine’s Day Without Breaking the Bank Valentine’s Day is almost here. This is a time for romance, love, and showing those you care about how much they mean to you. However, it’s also a time where it’s very tempting to spend a lot of money. Fancy dinners, expensive flowers, and pricey jewellery can certainly add up. If you’re not careful, you could find yourself overspending at Valentine’s Day, putting yourself into a tough ...
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How To Stop Spending 'Unconsciously'

Saving Money By Thinking About Your Purchases One of the most important parts of budgeting is keeping track of what you buy. When you do this, you are always aware of where your money is going. This not only makes it easy to see what you’re spending your money on, but it also allows you to make adjustments to your budget more easily. However, a lot of people – even those who are quite good at tracking what they buy – tend to make at least some pu...
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Know Your Rights: Your Bank

Your Bank and Your Rights Most people don’t spend a lot of time thinking about their bank. However, under Canadian law, you have several rights when you are dealing with a federally regulated financial institution, such as a bank. This means that, if a bank violates your rights, you can contact the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada to discuss your situation. It’s important to note that, while some credit unions are federally regulated, most cre...
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Saving Money on Back to School Shopping

Back to School Shopping: Money Saving Tips Yes, it’s almost time for back to school once again! If you have children, you know that kids need A LOT of things when they return for another school year. Plus, there are always a few items that your child may not need, but that they really, really want . All of the purchases you’ll need to buy can get overwhelming – and expensive! Here are some tips for saving money on back to school shopping. Create ...
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Five Ways to Live Debt Free You’ve Never Thought Of

Little Known Tips to Help You Live Debt Free You’ve likely heard a lot of tips that can help you save money and live debt free. Stop eating out, quit buying lattes, spend less on clothing, etc. These are all good tips, but if you need a bit more assistance paying down your debt and achieving a debt free lifestyle, here are some tips that could help you out. Negotiate Lower Rates You might not think that you have any room for negotiation with your...
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Figuring Out How Much You Owe

Truly Understanding Your Debt If you have a lot of debt, you may find it difficult to deal with it all. In fact, one problem that many people have is that they don’t know exactly how much they owe and who they owe it to. Because of this, they’re also not entirely aware of how long it will take them to repay their debt, how much interest they are paying, and several other aspects of their debt. This makes coming up with a plan difficult. Knowing a...
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Dealing with a Job Loss

How to Survive a Job Loss Losing your job can happen suddenly. For instance, in the recent case of Sears Canada, the 65-year-old company was liquidated rather suddenly, leaving 12,000 people out of work . A sudden job loss can be very difficult to deal with, as you do not have much time to prepare and adjust your financial situation to compensate for the loss. Here are some tips for managing your money while you look for work. Note that, if you q...
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Our Experts Answer Financial Questions on Budgeting, Paying Down Debt, Saving, and Teaching Children About Money

For many different reasons, sometimes people do not feel comfortable discussing money and finances. In fact, for a lot of people, it’s considered impolite and even rude to do so. We believe that talking about money is important. If you don’t talk about money and ask questions, you’ll be much more likely to be confused or lacking important information. This can make managing your finances more difficult. Talking about finances and asking questions...
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Should I File a Consumer Proposal Instead of a Bankruptcy?

Handling your Financial Future When it comes to dealing with large amounts of debt, there are different options available. Which of these options are available to you and which option makes the most sense for will depend on your particular financial situation. There is no “one size fits all” solution. One option that many consider is a consumer proposal. What is a consumer proposal? Should you choose a proposal over a bankruptcy? As mentioned, ea...
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Teaching your Kids to Manage Money

Children, Money and Budgeting One of the reasons that many people end up overspending, lacking savings and going into debt is because they were never taught how to manage money as a child. It may sound a little strange, but it’s true. The habits you pick up as a child often follow you throughout your life. In fact, a study from the University of Cambridge found that lifelong money habits are formed by the age of seven. Therefore, it’s very import...
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Understanding your Credit Score

What You Need To Know About Your Credit Score You’ve probably heard of a credit score and you might know that it’s an important piece of financial information. However, do you know what your credit score is? And, if you do, do you know how it’s calculated? A report from BMO found that more than half of Canadians have never checked their credit score and that 31 percent of people don’t know how to achieve a good credit rating. However, your credit...
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New Mortgage Stress Test Will Hurt Already Financially Stressed Buyers in 2018

Real Estate Investors Financial Issues Could Get Worse in 2018 The Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI) is expanding stress tests for all insured mortgages, not just those where a buyer has put down less than 20 percent of the purchase price. This change comes into effect on January 1, 2018. However, the OFSI has stated that “approved loan applications occurring between October 17, 2017 and January 1, 2018 might be subjec...
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Avoiding Financial Problems when Buying a Car

Saving Money when Buying a Car A car is a big purchase, especially a new car. Cars cost a lot of money and there are a lot of different choices to make when buying one. This gives you many different opportunities to make great decisions, but the possibility of making a mistake is increased as well. Here are some tips to help you avoid financial issues when you’re buying a car. Know your Budget Before you start looking at car brands and features a...
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Teaching your College Kid About Budgeting

Money Tips for College Students If your child is heading off to college for the first time this September, there will be a lot of changes and new experiences on the horizon. When a young person moves out for the first time, they suddenly have a lot of newfound freedom. This can be exciting and a great learning opportunity, but it can also get them into trouble if they’re not prepared. That’s why it’s important to make sure you teach your child to...
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