Educational Articles / Published on .

Where are you with your finances?

It’s the start of the year, and the perfect time to take stock of your finances! We have asked our financial planners to list a few things you may want to think about in 2015.

Ready?

IF YOU ARE 25 TO 30…

You’re in what we call the start-up phase of investing. What should you be considering during this phase?

  1. Get informed. Become familiar with everything regarding personal finances and financial security. Here are a few ideas:
    • Subscribe to our monthly newsletter
    • Register for our webinars
    • Attend our educational conferences
    • Read the educational material on our website.
  2. Start saving. Why not start with $50 a month through a pre-authorized contribution (PAC) plan? You can contribute more as your income grows. 
  3. Open an RRSP (Registered Retirement Savings Plan) and/or a TFSA (Tax-Free Savings Account). This will shelter your savings from taxes.Think TFSA if your earnings are still modest, then RRSP as they increase: because RRSP contributions are deductible, the savings will be more significant if your tax rate is higher.
  4. Pay off your student loans… or not. If your interest rate is lower than the return on your investments, you’re better off taking your time.

IF YOU ARE IN YOUR THIRTIES…


You are probably in the initial phase of accumulation. 
What should you be considering during this phase?
  1. Continue gathering information. If you haven’t already done so:

Subscribe to ourmonthly newsletter
Register for ourwebinars
Attend oureducational conferences
Read theeducational materialon our website.

  1. Keep saving. Invest in an RRSP, aTFSA, an RESP, in your home by paying off your mortgage… Speak to an expert to develop an optimal plan.
  2. Fund your children’s education. University is expensive, but the RESP (Registered Education Savings Plan) is a program that allows you to accumulate funds and obtain generous grants. See ou rarticleand our case study on the subject!
  3. Get married! More precisely, if you are living with someone, make it official with a marriage or a common-law contract that will protect you in the event of a separation.
  4. Protect your assets. Ask yourself how you would maintain your – and your family’s – standard of living if an accident or illness prevented you from working. And what would your loved ones live on if you were to die? In short, it’s time for insurance. And also time to make a will.
  5. Plan seriously. Things are more complicated now. You are at that stage when people tend to buy a home, start a family, and really establish their careers. You need a plan.Meet with a financial planner.

IF YOU ARE IN YOUR FORTIES OR FIFTIES…


You are probably in the secondary phase of accumulation. 
What should you be considering during this phase?
  1. Information is more important now than ever. Read our article and get our brochure on the financial challenges facing people age 50-65, available through a FÉRIQUE representative. Remember that we offer a variety of information tools:
    • Subscribe to ourmonthly newsletter
    • Register for ourwebinars
    • Attend oureducational conferences
    • Read theeducational materialon our website.
  2. Accelerate your savings. Update your projections. There’s a good chance you’ll find a problem. If nothing changes, you may not have the income you hope for when you retire. But you are at the height of your earning power. Make a catch-up plan!
    Keep your children in mind. If they are reaching the age of majority, watch out: You may have some decisions to make. See ourLittle survival guide for young adults and their parents.
  3. Make an estate plan. Your assets are growing, and so are your responsibilities. If you haven’t already done so, draw up a will and a mandate in case of incapacity. Better yet, incorporate them in a proper estate plan.
  4. Review your options. The Canadian retirement system involves numerous plans, many of which may apply to your situation:RRSP,LIRA, company pension plan, etc. Consider the income each one will procure.

IF YOU ARE IN YOUR SIXTIES…
You are now, or soon will be, in the payout phase. 
What should you be considering during this phase?

  1. Take stock. If you get insurance or benefits through your job, will you be able to keep them when you retire? If not, can you make a plan to replace them?
  2. Rebalance your portfolio. Make sure it’s protecting your capital and providing short-term liquidity, while also aiming for some long-term capital growth, because retirement can last a long time!
  3. Be clear about your payout plan. Where will your income come from at the different stages of retirement? Organize your TFSA, RRSP, RRIF, QPP, Old Age Security and other sources of income in a strategy that will minimize your tax bill.
  4. Review your estate plan. In particular, take into account the taxes your estate will have to pay on certain assets (RRSP/RRIF, second home, non-registered investments).

Ready to take action? Need advice or personalized assistance?

Our mutual fund representatives and financial planners are at your service.