A retirement savings plan is a way of protecting your post-retirement financial lifestyle. However, in recent times, recessions, stock-market declines, housing market bubbles, joblessness, and a global pandemic have created a series of challenges for people trying to start, grow, or maintain a retirement savings plan. With all these economic uncertainties, it’s natural to wonder if you’re doing all you can to protect your retirement nest egg. Taking a back to basics approach can instruct you on how to keep your retirement financial plan on track during uncertain economic times and beyond.
The question of reducing debt or contributing to savings will continue to be debated for as long as people plan to retire in Canada.
Of course opting for both: reducing debt and increasing savings is the ideal. As for which is better, however, really depends on the individuals involved, their goals and feelings, and their unique financial situations.
If you find you just can’t decide whether to save or pay off, start by contributing to a TFSA; those deposits can easily be withdrawn and applied to your mortgage in the future.
We all know the cost of goods and services rises over time. Single postage stamps that cost 85 cents just 3 years ago now cost a dollar. The same thing has happened to virtually everything we purchase. This is what we call “inflation” – a sustained rise in the cost of goods and services over time. It also means that the purchasing power of a dollar decreases over time because you need more and more dollars to buy the exact same goods or services. This has important implications for your savings; especially in your retirement years.
Capital Gains tax occurs when you sell capital property for more than you paid for it. In Canada, you are only taxed on 50% of your capital gain. For example, if you bought an investment for $25,000 and sold it for $75,000 you would have a capital gain of $50,000. You would then be taxed on 50% of the gain. In this instance, you would pay tax on $25,000. In Canada, there are some legitimate ways to avoid paying this tax: Tax shelters, Lifetime Capital Gains Exemption, Capital Losses, Deferring, and Charitable Giving.
Imagine you woke up today and could no longer go to work – Would you be able to pay your bills? What if you are diagnosed with cancer and must travel for treatments? Could you afford to lose your income and pay for healthcare expenses?
For most Canadians, the answer is no. A survey conducted by RBC found that 50% of Canadians could not afford to take time off work if needed. Luckily, there is a solution available.
Ever feel like your money is not going as far as it used to? Do not worry, you are not imagining it. You can blame inflation. Inflation is the rising price of goods and services over time. This rise impacts your purchasing power. Though it can be discouraging to think that inflation is eating away at the value of your assets, economists consider a small amount of inflation indicative of a healthy economy. Inflation encourages consumer spending and corporate productivity.
This information is designed to educate and inform you of financial strategies and products currently available. As each individual’s circumstances differ, it is important to review the suitability of these concepts for your particular needs with a Qualified Financial Advisor.