- When getting a mortgage, get a mortgage broker for the best mortgage rates. Ask a friend or your realtor for a recommendation.
- Don't get mortgage insurance. Mortgage insurance only covers your mortgage balance which decreases over time but the premium remains the same. Instead, get enough life insurance to cover your mortgage balance and any other consumer debt that you may have.
- Hold your rainy day fund in a TFSA so you don't have to pay tax on the interest you earn from your savings account.
- If your annual income is above $73,689, a $1000 donation to a charitable organization actually only costs you $577.85 after the tax savings.
- File your income tax as soon as possible so you can get your tax refund back. Filing it online will get you a faster refund than mailing it in.
- Pay your credit card balances in full, on time, every month.
- Get a no fee credit card that pays you back. There are many options out there. I use the PC Financial Mastercard because it works out to getting 1% cash back for groceries on every dollar I spend. A lot of cash back cards says "Earn up to 1% cash back" which means it has a graduated cash back schedule so you don't get the full 1% cash back until you spend a certain amount of money.
- Open a no-fee bank account. The banks make too much money as it is.
- Don't get suckered into group RESPs (i.e. Canadian Scholarship Trust or Heritage Education Funds). They may have good sales pitches but I didn't like it mainly because they don't provide much flexibility if you have to miss payments.
Monday, February 1, 2010
More personal financial planning advice
In addition to the Wealthy Barber, here are a few more personal financial planning tips that I have collected throughout the years.