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Navigating Canada's Financial Landscape: Addressing Key Questions

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This summer, for the first time ever, Canada’s population reached 40-million. At this milestone, let’s take an opportunity to address a few financial questions that Canadians have today…

How much do I need to save for retirement? This is a common question we get, unfortunately the answer to this is “It depends”. Your lifestyle, retirement goals, debt levels, pensions, etc. will impact whether your specific need will be higher or lower than others. What is most important is to have a plan, review it regularly, start as early as possible and stay invested.

Am I on pace to have enough savings? Again, your needs may be significantly higher or lower than the average; however, here’s some stats showing the median net worth of Canadians at different ages…

Under 35 $48,800

35-44 years $234,400

45-54 years $521,100

55-64 years $690,000

65+ $543,200

Your results may vary greatly based off your level of discipline and skill; however, luck also will have a huge impact. For example, if you bought real estate in Vancouver or Toronto years ago, at historically low rates, you would have had a huge advantage over somebody currently trying to enter the real estate market for the first time.

An old rule of thumb says to spend about 50% of your paycheque on needs (like housing, food, heat and transportation), approximately 30% on your wants (like hobbies and vacations) and the remaining 20% towards savings and investments. As an example, a Manitoban grossing $80,000/year would have after-tax income of about $61,000 and therefore could allocate $2,538/month to needs, $1,523/month on wants and $1,015/month to savings and investments. Unfortunately, many Canadians are saving less than they should. While circumstances may keep you from always keeping pace, you should review your savings rate at least annually and try to keep up with inflation, when possible.

With higher interest rates than we’ve seen since in the last 20 years, how many Canadian families are debt-free now? According to Statistics Canada’s latest information, approximately 30% of Canadians are debt-free. These number are lower for those pre-retirement as they contend with student loans, lines of credit and mortgages. The highest levels of debt freedom (unsurprisingly) can be found with those aged 65+. However, while 57% of seniors are debt-free today, this number has been trending down in recent years as 66% were debt-free back in 2005 and in 1999 nearly 73% were debt-free. For those struggling with higher rates, there may be opportunities for relief. Reducing expenses and increasing income is great, but perhaps debts can also be consolidated at better rates and/or re-payment schedules can be adjusted.

There will always be “noise” in the media that can cause investors to worry about their financial plans. Current concerns may include Inflation, geopolitical tensions as well as the threat of potential new COVID variants. As always, it is key to stay focused on long-term objectives, review and rebalance investments periodically and leverage the expertise of professionals that may help navigate challenges and opportunities along the way.

Sources:

https://www.statcan.gc.ca/o1/en/plus/3861-40-million-strong-canada-reaches-new-population-milestone

https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/t1/tbl1/en/cv.action?pid=1110001601

https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/n1/daily-quotidien/201222/t003b-eng.htm

-Ryan Secord, Investment Advisor, Mutual Funds

Ryan Secord is an Investment Advisor, Mutual Funds at Endeavour Wealth Management with iA Private Wealth Inc, an award-winning office as recognized by the Carson Group. Together with his partners he provides comprehensive wealth management planning for business owners, professionals and individual families.

This information has been prepared by Ryan Secord who is an Investment Advisor, Mutual Funds for iA Private Wealth Inc. and does not necessarily reflect the opinion of iA Private Wealth. The information contained in this newsletter comes from sources we believe reliable, but we cannot guarantee its accuracy or reliability. The opinions expressed are based on an analysis and interpretation dating from the date of publication and are subject to change without notice. Furthermore, they do not constitute an offer or solicitation to buy or sell any of the securities mentioned. The information contained herein may not apply to all types of investors. The Investment Advisor, Mutual Funds can open accounts only in the provinces in which they are registered.

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