Saturday, April 30, 2011

Should Couples Have Financial Secrets? Part 1

Should couples have financial secrets or should the commitment of marriage tear down the walls of covertness in a relationship? While independence is important in any relationship, is it more important than trust and open dialogue?

Read the full article here:

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Found Money? Not so Fast; Think Before You Pre-Spend that Tax Refund - AOL's WalletPop Canada

The only good thing about tax season depends on whether you're one of the lucky Canadians expecting a tax refund. But before you and your family start making a list of ways to blow it before you even receive it, take a deep breath and stop before you pre-send it.

Read the full article here:

Monday, April 25, 2011

Fixed Vs. Variable Rates: Pay Yourself Instead of The Bank - AOL's WalletPop Canada

The number one question I get from home owners is the never ending, "fixed vs. variable" rate debate. And although it depends on a number of factors (your personal preference along with the accuracy of your crystal ball to predict where interest rates are headed), real estate expert Don Campbell, and president of the Real Estate Investment Network has a unique twist on the old argument.

Campbell touts opting for a variable rate mortgage, but being disciplined enough to make the payment that a five year fixed would offer thus paying more on your principle and paying off your mortgage sooner and less interest over time.

Read the full article here:

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Credit card debt or student loans – what should we pay off first? Globe & Mail's Cash Clash

Laura, 38, and Jim, 30, Calgary

As the John Lennon lyric goes, life is what happens to you when you’re busy making other plans – and for this couple, life racked up $70,000 in consumer debt. She says they should pay off the credit card, but he thinks the student loans are the priority. Debt deliverance or dire straits?

Catch my advice and the full article here:

Monday, April 18, 2011

Time to Invest in Canadian Real Estate? Find Out What's Hot and What's Not - AOL's WalletPop Canada

Kelley Keehn Apr 14th 2011 at 3:00PM

Predicting Canada's real estate hot spots over the next 12 months requires some luck and a crystal ball. But real estate expert, Don Campbell, president of the Real Estate Investment Network has a systematic process for determining what markets will likely increase in 18 months to even as long as 10 years down the road.

Read the full article here:

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Should this U.S.-based couple ditch their condo? Globe & Mail's Cash Clash

Jane, 51, and Ron, 54, Chicago

This south-of-the-border couple took a hit on the sale of their condo when the U.S. housing bubble burst. Now they’re looking for advice: She wants to trade in their urban rental lease for a mortgage, but he dreams of a life in milder climes. With rising taxes and elderly parents in the picture, it’s not so simple. Green acres or mondo condo?

Read the full story and my advice here:

Sunday, April 10, 2011

The High Cost of Hidden Fees - AOL's WalletPop Canada

Kelley Keehn Apr 3rd 2011 at 12:54PM More Filed under: Banks, Budgeting & Planning, Credit Cards

Emerson emailed me looking for some financial assistance. He's self-employed, single and his annual income hovers around the $55,000 mark, although it fluctuates radically from month to month.

He's stressed about his finances as, in his words, "It's always gone before I even receive it". To figure out the mystery of his missing money, I had him take my 30-day anti-budget challenge. He agreed to track every dollar he was spending over a 30-day period and we sat down to figure out where his money was going. I also poured over his bank and credit card statements for the past year. One of the main culprits gobbling up his disposable income? Hidden fees that amounted to a trip or two a year if he had been aware of them.

Read on to see if you're making the same mistakes as Emerson and something as simple as not paying attention to the fees you pay could be standing in the way of your next vacation and more!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Should couple upgrade to a car they can both drive? Globe and Mail's Cash Clash

Matt, 26, and Anna, 25, Ottawa.

For this young couple, suburban life requires wheels – but she can’t drive his standard-transmission compact. He wants to get her an old car for weekend use, but she’d rather trade in for a ride they can both drive. Two cars: double the fun, or double the headache?

Read the full article and my advice here:

Monday, April 4, 2011

Should they make the leap to cottage country? Globe & Mail's Cash Clash

Bob, 71, and Betty, 68, Halifax

The cottage – family haven or financial black hole? This retired couple want to spend their golden years close to the sea, and she wants to move to their vacation home full time. He worries it’s too isolated and too much work. Rural bliss or real bummer?

Read the full article and my advice here: