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retirement planning

Economic Crisis Teaches Important Lessons

If any good can come from an economic downturn it is that people are forced to think more seriously about their financial success strategy. Many people affected by the economic damage wrought by the recent COVID-19 pandemic will change their financial habits by cutting back on spending, reducing debt and increasing their savings. But, for many other Canadians, life will likely continue as usual where the pursuit of an optimal life style now overshadow concerns about future financial security.

When Should I Start Receiving CPP?

If you apply on your 60th birthday, you'll get about 36% less of the age 65 monthly pension. But, if you wait until you're 70, you'll get about 42% more. Should you hold out for the higher income, or start early?

Start early and you're sure to get it. If you wait, and die before it starts, the income you could have had is lost to you and your heirs forever.

Healthcare and Retirement

We are all familiar with the following perennial adage: “health is wealth”. Regardless of any financial circumstances you may have, optimum health allows you to enjoy long trips overseas, partake in your grandchildren’s life, physical activities such as golf as well as looking forward to your retirement years. No one wants to have to worry about the expenses that come with health problems in retirement.

Inheritance Doesn't Have to Wait

The Baby Boomers are making history as the largest retirement migration ever seen. However, it's their parents who hold the most massive accumulation of wealth which is now being transfered to future generations. Estimated to be well in excess of a trillion dollars, the traditional rules of inheritance are changing.

Overlooked RRSP Strategies

There are a number of common RRSP strategies that many of us use on a regular basis. These include making regular monthly deposits, borrowing to make RRSP contributions and making contributions at the beginning of the year instead of the end of the year. Here are some strategies that may get overlooked:

The Three Levels of Retirement Resources

A survey conducted by a big bank some years ago* revealed that over 30% of Canadians were hoping for a lottery win to help fund their retirement. This raises the question, "If you were to paint a picture of your retirement, what would it look like?" Many would let dreams take over and envision lots of travel, a vacation home in an exotic location, spoiling their grandchildren, perhaps several year-long world cruises.

Retirement Investing Approaches

After spending likely 15 – 30 years focused on building an investment portfolio, it can be quite a challenge to switch gears when it comes time to withdrawing income from a retirement portfolio. This change leads to new ways of looking at investing as well as re-assessing habits that have been honed over decades.

Many retirees looking to generate income from investment assets often think that they can make withdrawals from their investment portfolio while also continuing to grow the assets over time. This is generally a tough goal to achieve.

What You Don't Know Could Cost You

The age old saying, 'Ignorance is bliss', may apply to many things in life. However, when it comes to your finances, ignorance can be absolutely devastating. Even the government is calling the startling low rate of financial literacy among Canadians an epidemic that can have catastrophic consequences for the nation's economic future.

A lack of knowledge on even the most basic financial matters has already led to a cascade of calamities that will have a far-reaching and long lasting affect on all of us. Among them:

Registered Retirement Income Funds

It is required by the Income Tax Act that a Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) must be closed by the end of the year in which the planholder (annuitant) reaches age 71. At that time, the annuitant must decide what to do with their retirement savings. They have three options - cash in the RRSP, buy an annuity, or convert to a Registered Retirement Income Fund (RRIF).

Finding the Right Retirement Location

Grant and Sarah are planning on retiring within the next two years. Paul and Linda, already retired, are thinking about making a move. Whether you are about to retire or are already retired and considering a change, you should consider:

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