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Debt

Paying down debt, should I change my tune?

Friends of My Own Advisor know I don’t like debt.  Since moving to our current home and taking on a fat mortgage, I struggle now and then with our debt load.  My wife and I are fortunate to have good jobs but you never know when that might change.  On that note, I can only control a few things when it comes to my job, namely my performance and behaviours on the job: do what is asked of me and more; complete my work effectively and efficiently; be professional; continue to mature my subject matter expertise and acquire new skills when and where ...

Should I implement the Smith Manoeuvre?

I’ve got a bunch of debt – mostly from my mortgage.  I wish there was a way to convert this mortgage debt into a tax-deduction, you know, like the Americans can, to kill off my mortgage faster.  Sounds like fiction in Canada right?  Well, this can happen to you and me if we follow The Smith Manoeuvre. While The Smith Manoeuvre is tricky to set up and takes some significant financial discipline to keep it going, it is perfectly legal and complies with our Canadian tax code.  I’ve been considering this approach for my portfolio for some ...

3 Golden Rules to Rid Yourself of Debt

Let’s face it, debt sucks. The idea of owing money to others, a financial obligation, doesn’t sit well with me.  I suspect if you’re reading this blogpost debt doesn’t sit well with you either.  Although I think some debt is a necessary evil, say to eventually own your house or car, I’m suggesting debt must be managed or it will manage you.  Maybe some folks are in severe debt because they have no other choice and I definitely sympathize with that, life happens and some people are put into predicaments far beyond their doing.  They ...

My struggle with GDSR and TDSR

I’ve heard these terms thrown around by a few financial institutions from time to time.  Here is a quick look and my quick take on them:  Gross Debt Service Ratio (GDSR) – % income required to pay basic housing costs. Under the “basic” banner:  mortgage payments (including principal and interest), condo fees (if you have any), property taxes and heating costs.  This sum is divided by your total gross income.  Financial institutions want to see your GDSR under 32%.  This is because spending more than 32% on “basic” housing ...

Should you remortgage or take out a secured loan?

For my growing subscription base in the United Kingdom (over 100 visits from England alone last month), the following is a post from moneysupermarket.com, a leading British price-comparison organization specializing in financial services that includes mortgages, credit cards, insurance, travel, cell phones, and more. If you need to secure a loan on your property, you have the option of remortgaging or taking out a secured loan. Each option has its benefits and drawbacks.  Sources such as moneysupermarket.com can provide guidance as to whether ...

What would you do with $1,000?

Plain and simple question:  What would you do with $1,000? This $1,000 is lying on the street, figuratively.  It is totally found money.  You found it, you picked it up and you put it in your pocket.  No strings attached. What you would do? I think what you’d do with this $1,000 says a little bit about who you are and what your financial priorities are. If you have a strong desire to spend it all, I understand.  It is found money after all and life is for the living.  It’s time to have some fun, right? If you have a strong desire to save ...

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