Category Archive for: ‘Financial Planning’

Do you have a Written Estate Plan?

estate plan

No one likes to think about their own mortality, but designing a proper estate plan can help to lessen the grief your loved ones left behind. Alternately, without a written estate plan, surviving family members are often saddled with the responsibility of making estate decisions without a clear understanding of the deceased’s wishes. The effects of poor estate planning can be far-reaching, …

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Why You Should Talk to Your Children about Their Inheritance


When working with successful farm and small business families I find that there’s a general reluctance to talk around any potential sale, succession planning, what’s in the parent’s wills or any discussion related to inheritance.  At some point children can benefit from discussing how, when and why wealth is going to be transferred. For those of you who have a …

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Tax Changes that will Impact Insurance Products

tax changes

As our Federal and Provincial Governments go further and further in debt, so does their need to squeeze ever more tax revenue out of all of us Canadians. The 2017 tax changes for life insurance and annuities are two examples of this.  With life policies, there is potential for some of the payout on death to now be taxable. Life …

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Don’t Let Sickness or Disability Sideline Your Finances!


Today young and healthy Canadians might want to consider owning critical illness and disability insurance ahead of life insurance. But most 20 and 30 year olds don’t spend a lot of time thinking about a sickness or disability. If you’re young and healthy and low on savings, it may not be a high priority, especially if you have not started …

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Don’t Get Locked Into Conventional Mortgages!

conventional mortgage

When making a deposit at my local bank I could not help but notice their latest offering on their bank machine screen; “Get pre-approved for a  mortgage online in five minutes”.  It’s not quite that simple though.  The questions only take five minutes to answer and then a mortgage specialist will follow up with you in 24 hours. So you’ve …

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Risk Management for Farmers and Small Business Owners

risk management

When it comes to risk management farmers and small business owners understand the value of life insurance and the need to protect their family or business from a financial disaster should they die prematurely. Also how life insurance can be used to conserve or to equalize their final estate, for those children who will be involved in the business and …

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Should you Incorporate Your Farm?


Operating any successful farm depends on having smart, strategic thinking people, no matter what the farm structure. Incorporating your farm might be the next step to look at in your operation. There can be many benefits to incorporating depending on your circumstances. Incorporating enhances financial management: The requirement to file a balance sheet as part of the corporate tax return …

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Farm Succession Planning, Keep the Conversation Going

farm succession

Developing farm management skills, similar to an exercise program, pays big benefits, but it’s also easy to slough off for another day.  Considering that only one-third of producers use business advisers or risk management tools, and fewer still do human resource, farm succession, or strategic planning, it is easy to understand why it keeps getting put off. Consider Bill, a …

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Is Your Insurance Policy an Abandoned Orphan?


There are many life insurance policies out there that people purchased years ago, but the agent who they bought it from has long since retired, left the business, or become unwilling or unable to provide service. These end up as what are referred to as orphan policies, because there is no insurance advisor assigned to it. Adding to this is …

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Three Phases of Retirement

three phases of retirement

We tend to think of retirement as one continuous lifetime event. After forty or so years of working, we have a retirement party, then off into the “golden years” we go. But while the retirement we choose will be as unique as each of us, once we’re retired we can expect go through three phases of retirement. Understanding these different …

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Millennials and Insurance

millennials and insurance

Most 20 and 30 somethings may not think a lot about insurance.  If you are young, healthy and low on savings, you may not feel that it is a priority, especially if you haven’t started a family.  But, it could be important for you. Today’s young adults don’t want to be sold any insurance products, they want to do the …

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Canadians are Unprepared for Retirement! Are You?

unprepared for retirement

I am very concerned about the findings of the most recent financial wellness survey published by Manulife Financial. Canadians are feeling financially unprepared for retirement. On top of that, they are wondering how best to protect their loved ones from the risk of their premature death, or if they were to suffer a serious illness or disability. 40% of participants …

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Why Critical Illness and Disability Coverage?


Most of us understand the importance of life insurance: to look after your loved ones by replacing your lost income earning ability if you were to die prematurely.  But what happens to your income earning ability if you become ill or disabled? Critical illness (CI) and disability coverage are often overlooked, but are equally as important as life insurance. They …

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Canada’s 2017 Budget Comments & Highlights

canada's 2017 budget

Canada’s 2017 budget is designed to cool some of the anxiety and anger that many ordinary Canadians have been expressing over carbon tax, the ballooning deficit and all the money being sent overseas that would be better spent here in Canada.  However, it does not offer much to Canadians at this time beyond an ever increasing budget deficit. There’s no …

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The Best Time to Buy Life Insurance is When You Don’t Need it!

buy life insurance

  One of the biggest mistakes people make is putting off the decision to buy life insurance. As a young adult it will be cheaper, you’ll be less likely to need a medical exam to qualify, and you can ensure your future insurability. How much time do we spend considering the extended warranty on our new smartphone? What about a …

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Where to Look for Investment Growth

investment growth

Since the election of Donald Trump in November, U.S. stocks have surged to all-time highs, and the S&P/TSX Composite index isn’t far off.  The US Federal Reserve raised their base rate 0.25% as expected and indicated the potential for some additional increases to come in 2017.  Their cautious, yet generally positive, economic statement follows a slew of improving data.  This …

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Successfully Completing the Farm Transfer

farm transfer

First and foremost, start by talking about it now!  Not tomorrow, not next week or year, right now. The earlier you start the process, the more options you have available.  Balancing your retirement, your estate and the farm between the kid/s taking over your family farm and your non-farming children is quite an undertaking and it takes time to set …

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Protect Yourself from Scams, Hacks and Identity Fraud


A recent family holiday at Big White Ski Hill reminded me about the need to have a better handle on what’s in my wallet. I lost it on the ski hill and didn’t realize it until I stopped for a coffee in the afternoon. Needless to say, a feeling of panic stepped in! I retraced my steps to where we …

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A Winter Project for Farm & Business Families

winter project

A Winter Project for Farm & Business Families Before the days lengthen out and the weather warms up, now may be the time to begin a winter project and start the conversation with your family about sale or succession of your farm or small business. With my first 27 years here in Canada spent working with farm families including eight …

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Life Insurance is an Asset not an Expense

life insurance

  For farm families and small businesses there are multiple benefits of using life insurance as an asset class to compliment your existing investments. Providing an attractive return on investment is one, but it must be structured properly. Life insurance payouts to named beneficiaries bypass probate and are private, but depending on the type of policy, with the latest tax …

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