How will you pay for this today? Maybe it’s time to change the way you answer this common checkout question.
With more payment options than ever, consumers can find easy ways to save money, simply by using a different payment method.
Some merchants will provide discounts for cash purchases of goods or services. Using cash can also make it easier to stick to your budget. But watch how you access your cash. Use an automated bank machine (ABM) owned by your financial institution – withdrawing from a different institution’s ABM could cost more than $8.00 per transaction. Avoid taking a cash advance on your credit card since interest will be charged on those funds right away.
Debit cards can carry costs
Debit can be a good option, as long as you are not paying extra fees per transaction. Check how many free debit transactions are included with your bank account package.
Make your credit card work for you
Credit cards can be a convenient and safe way to pay for purchases and services. Some also offer benefits and rewards. But they can encourage “buy now, pay later” spending habits that may lead to financial trouble. “Carrying a balance on a credit card increases the cost of everything you purchase with the card due to the amount of interest you pay,” says Ursula Menke, commissioner of the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC). Aim to pay off your balance in full every month to avoid interest charges that mean you actually pay more than the price tag.
The budget should allow more competition from smaller lenders which will keep banks competitive and make dealing with a mortgage broker even more important. "The government has promised that the smaller banks will have easier access to funding from CMHC. The corporation's new allocation methodologies will undergo restructuring to increase the access smaller lenders have to portfolio insurance and securitization programs." The finance Minister, Jim Flaherty has taken steps to arm "smaller banks" with the tools to better compete with the banks and this is a win for the consumer.
The 2014 Federal Budget will make it easier for new banks to enter the mortgage market and improve access to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) programs for small mortgage lenders, according to the Financial Post.
The budget, which was released on Tuesday by Mr Flaherty, promises to "improve the ability of new entrants and smaller banks to compete" while preserving the strength of the sector. In addition the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI) has appointed a new representative to contact the small banks and handle some to the issues that they currently face when in competition with the Big Five banks.
The government has promised the smaller banks easier access to funding from CMHC so they are more competitive. The corporation new allocation methodologies with be restructured to increase the access smaller lenders have to portfolio insurance and securitization programs. "I sure hope (there's more competition),: Gregory Thomas, executive of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation told the Financial Post. "Canada could use one or two strong national credit unions."
If you would like to know more about small bank loans please call me at 250 862 1806 or email me [email protected].
Time is running out to make your RRSP contribution and take advantage of a tax deduction for 2013. With the March 3, 2014 deadline fast approaching, here are three last-minute tips to consider:
1. Find an advisor **
Chasing returns or the next big thing can only lead to disappointment. Guidance from an experienced investment advisor will take emotion out of the mix and help you meet your financial goals.
2. Contribute now
Don’t worry about how to invest your RRSP contribution. Temporarily park your contribution in a money market fund today and re-balance your portfolio tomorrow.
3. Diversify, diversify, diversify
Canada’s equity market represents only about five per cent of the world’s entire stock market. It makes sense to diversify your portfolio and invest in global markets. Consider different asset classes too to limit risk.
**If you need further information on this or for a referral to a financial planner please call 250 862 1806 or email [email protected].
Are you having a hard time selling your home right now? Could your home use some updates which you can’t afford to do right now? Are potential buyers unable to see the potential of your home with a little customization to their liking?
If you answered yes to any of these questions then you could really use the Canadian Home Renovation Program. The CHRP will pre-approve your home for a renovation loan for 10% of the listing price to a maximum of $40,000. This marketing program is all done for your realtor so they will be receptive to it. The CHRP program details will be on the listing sheet with all the information for potential buyers about cost and how the program works. The CHRP program even comes with an assigned text number so buyers can quickly get details about your home and the program. Right from their smartphones they can order a full report providing them with all the details of the program. The CHRP program also provides a website address for your property so that those who don’t have a smartphone or texting can also receive the free report.
Another cool marketing piece that is provided with the program is a set of cards which can be placed up in strategic areas of your home to remind buyers of how they can personalize your home to their tastes. For example there may be a card which shows a $12,000 bathroom renovation and it shows a modern bathroom and the increased payment on the mortgage of only $54.66 per month based on today’s mortgage rates. If they wanted new flooring which may cost $5000 this only adds another $22.78 per month. Research tells us that most buyers struggle to come up with their down payment and it may take up to five years before they can refinance their home under today’s mortgage rules to get the money. This is a cheaper easier way to finance renovations than using a line of credit or credit cards.
If you would like more information on the Canadian Home Renovation Program to help your home sell more quickly or if you would like to be pre-approved for the CHRP program on the home you are buying please call me at 250 862 1806 or email [email protected]
Read more Home Finance articles
- Access your money more quickly Jan 11
- Tips to get approved for a mortgage Dec 28
- The joy of handmade holiday cards Dec 14
- Why you need a mortgage broker Nov 30
- Managing your mortgage Nov 16
- How to 'nail' an affordable home reno Nov 2
- Tips on keeping more of your money Oct 19
- Make your home toxic free Oct 5
- First time home buyer mistakes Sep 21
- Smart back-to-school shopping tips Aug 24
- Eight ways to save money Aug 10
- Benefits of using a mortgage broker Jul 27
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