Are You Behind On Your Long-Term Savings Plans?

(NC) When most of us think about retirement, spending more time with family, finding new hobbies and travelling the world are often top of mind. But while retirement can be a wonderful chapter, getting there isn’t always easy.

A recent survey found 55 per cent of Canadians either believe they aren’t financially on track to retire – or simply don’t have a long-term savings strategy in place.

More than one out of five of us also report high levels of stress when planning for the future.

Fortunately, we are not as behind as we think.

Through the Canada Pension Plan, beneficiaries have a solid foundation for retirement income in their golden years. If you work in Canada, contributions to the CPP are automatically deducted from your paycheque during your working years, and any of those funds not needed to pay current beneficiaries are then invested by Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, a professional investment organization. You then get these funds back in the form of the CPP benefits in retirement.

To make sure that your pension money is there for you when you retire, CPPIB invests in a diverse set of worldwide holdings, which includes everything from public and private equities to real estate and infrastructure.

At the end of its most recent fiscal year, the fund totaled $316.7 billion and earned a gross investment return of 12.2 per cent.

Canada’s chief actuary, who monitors the financial state of the fund, estimated in the last triennial report that the CPP is sustainable over a 75-year projection period. This means that the Fund will be able to pay out benefits for at least the next 75 years, at current contribution and benefit rates.

“The fund’s performance has been strong over the past decade,” says Dan Madge, senior manager of public affairs and communications for CPPIB. “Retirees should take comfort in the fact that their Canada Pension Plan is sustainable for many generations and will be there for them when they retire.”

Planning for retirement is stressful, but CPP’s contributors and beneficiaries can remain confident the fund will provide financial stability today and tomorrow, allowing them to focus more on their families, communities and futures.

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Financial Tips For Blended Families

(NC) Money matters can be tricky when adding a new partner, stepchildren or extended family members into a household. According to a recent TD survey, 66 per cent of Canadians living in a blended family say they face financial challenges, and 47 per cent find juggling these challenges stressful.

The top three financial challenges people face are determining who pays for ongoing household expenses, managing different views on the budget, and determining saving priorities.

Having an open discussion ahead of time will lay the groundwork for a well-functioning household. Here are some tips from TD on how today’s modern families can navigate common financial household hurdles.

Determine household priorities. Schedule time to sit down and discuss the future. What are your financial goals and priorities? Your blended family hopefully provides a larger support system, which can keep you accountable, help you to reach your goals and let you lean on them when needed. Consider speaking to a financial planner who will create an action plan to achieve both long and short-term objectives.

Compromise on managing the budget. It’s important to build a budget together to ensure everyone is on the same page about allocating money. Remember that each person comes into the home with different values about money — someone might be a spender who enjoys indulging, while another feels it’s important to save every penny. Developing a budget together will make surprises less likely.

Decide who pays for ongoing expenses. One person is usually better at the day-to-day management of costs. When there are new additions to the family, new expenses need to be sorted as well. These include which parent will cover the children’s sporting activities, whether or not child support is owed to previous spouses, or bigger ticket items like braces and post-secondary education. It’s okay to designate one person as the lead or bill payer, but others should be involved to know what’s going where. Since it’s rare each family member earns the same income, it’s best to determine ahead of time how much each person will contribute to both day-to-day and long-term expenses.

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Tips For Back To School Spending

(NC) Buying school supplies and clothes can be the biggest expense for many parents when it comes to shopping for their children. Over Labour Day weekend alone, Canadians made nearly 26 million transactions totalling almost $1.4 billion dollars in retail stores last year. How do you avoid spending a fortune? Here are three tips to help you get the most from your wallet this back-to-school season.

Spot the sales. Take advantage of every deal and coupon that comes your way. Check flyers for clearance sales, spend some time browsing online for discount promo codes, and use a comparison app to get the lowest price possible. This can save you more money than you expect.

Stick to your list. Don’t stray from your teacher’s supply list at the start of a new school year, and avoid getting distracted by unlisted items that catch your attention. As tempting as those items may be, you’ll just waste time and money. If shopping with your child, make sure they know the plan ahead of time.

Make checkout a breeze. Back to school is a very busy time of year. Use Interac Flash to get through the checkout line faster. It allows you to pay for purchases quickly, securely and conveniently by simply holding your bank card in front of the reader at checkout.

Back to school is an expensive time for everyone. The cost of books, clothes, shoes, utensils, and transportation can derail any summer plans you may have had, and even strain your current financial situation without even adding the extras. At Fast Access Finance we offer short and long term loans for every situation. Borrow between 5000-10000 today, hassle free. Apply online at or call 1-855-367-9191 to speak to one of our team members.