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Thursday, September 18, 2014
Last month I read this book and found many chapters were fascinating. There are many smart money saving tips we all do not know. It’s a simple, engaging read filled with real-life stories that covers all of the basics Canadians need to know about credit, debt and investing. This book provides much-needed advice. It points out that today, Canadians are saddled with over 1.4 trillion dollars in consumer debt and less that 75% have three months’ savings in an emergency account. But the book is also filled with chunks of valuable information that even the most financially astute may be unaware of.
Author says many Canadians are surprised to discover that conventional mortgage payments are usually not included in their credit report. “So, it’s even more vital to ensure that credit card payments, loans and lines of credit are paid on time every month as those debts are reported regularly on your credit report.
She also cautions that if any of your accounts end up in collections, even a minor amount would hurt your score.
Pay all your bills on time and order your credit report from Equifax Canada or TransUnion Canada so you can review it yourself.
Most of us are aware of the difference between store credit cards and bank credit cards. But what about the difference between store-issued and bank-issued VISA and MasterCard? If you think the only difference is the rewards offered, think again. Author points out those store-issued cards tend to have higher interest rates and aren’t always recognized as major credit cards.
She tells the story of a colleague who tried to use a department store MasterCard to check in at a kiosk at the Toronto airport, and it was refused.
Always travel with a bank-issued credit card as they are more widely accepted.
Author says, “Although student loans give you a six-month grace period to begin paying down the loan, interest on the loans starts to accumulate the day you graduate.”
Pay off student loans as soon as possible by continuing to live like a student after graduating to keep your costs to a minimum.
We all know falling behind on our credit card payments means we’ll be hit with interest rate charges. But Keehn points out it can also increase the rate of interest we’re being charged – in the case of one of her clients who was always a few days late, by over 10%.
Always pay your credit card by the due date. If you don’t, some cards will hike your interest rate until you’ve made six months of consecutive minimum payments.
Mortgage insurance is sometimes thought of as life insurance, but it’s not. While life insurance proceeds are tax-free and payable directly to your beneficiary, mortgage insurance is paid out to the lender to cover only the remainder of your mortgage.
When it comes to insuring your debt, life insurance can provide you with more control than mortgage insurance over the costs and who will benefit.
Last one key piece of financial advice she would like to share with readers after having written The Money Book. She said, “It would be to never, ever look at anyone and compare you financially.
Most individuals have no clued what their friends and neighbours are worth. The advent of easy credit creates illusions that couldn’t exist just a few decades or centuries ago. Not long ago, if you didn’t have the cash for something, you didn’t buy it. Now, you can look very wealthy, but like everything, the time of reckoning eventually comes.”
This Money Book for Everyone Else is a guide that will teach you:
• How only paying what your credit card company requests might leave you burdened with a balance for decades;
• How to protect your financial identity and how failing to do so could result in a life-long nightmare;
• How to spot and avoid investment scams;
• Why certain credit cards could leave you hungry and thirsty on your next flight;
• Navigating the world of Canadian tax shelters, along with the basics of investing and debt;
• How to repair and maintain your credit score;
• Simple tips for being debt-free sooner;
• Questions, criteria, and biases you need to be aware of when choosing your financial team.
(Source-The Money Book for Everyone Else by Kelley Keehn)