How Divorce Affects Your Income Taxes

11 Comments

My soon-to-be-ex-husband and I split in mid-2016. When most people hear the word “divorce,” they can’t help but think of the associated negative financial consequences, but many forget the tax implications. Even I didn’t consider them until I sat down to file my taxes and learned that even though we’d been living “separate and apart” for more than half a year, his income would still have a big impact on my income tax filing. If you’re recently separated or divorced, it’s important to understand how this affects your taxes. Below are some tips to help make filing your income taxes go as smoothly as possible in the wake of the breakdown of your marriage. Change your marital status with Canada Revenue Agency In the eyes of the CRA, once you’re married, you’ll never file taxes as “single” ever again. You’re forever separated or divorced. Semantics aside, it’s important to notify […]

How to Talk to Friends & Family Members That Are Bad With Money

5 Comments

We all have that friend or family member (or many) that are terrible with money. They spend more than they earn, use credit cards with abandon, think only in the context of the monthly payment. They’re going to save for retirement “later,” they don’t have an emergency fund, and they think insurance is for people that aren’t careful. They shop when they’re sad or happy or bored. They buy things they can’t afford because they “deserve” them. And so on. We all know this person. We’ve actually all probably been this person at one point or another. So how do we get them to stop their bad behavior and join us in the light of good credit and ample savings? Well, you can’t. You can’t save your friend’s money If you’ve got your finances in order, you know exactly what it takes to do so — and how nice it […]

4 Ways to Boost Your Savings by Spending Money

19 Comments

Oh, yeah, you read that right. There IS a way to put more money into your savings account even as you’re spending money. Most personal finance advice focuses on cutting back and reducing your spending, which is an effective if incomplete way to keep more money in your bank account at the end of the month. However, there are some expenses we can’t get out of paying — groceries, utilities, a little bit of fun — and for those we should do more than cut back. We should try to get money back! Use a cash-back credit card Obvious, but under-utilized. One of the easiest ways to earn on your spending is to use a cash-back credit card. These typically pay back 1% to 2% on your spending. Most cash-back cards offer bonus cash back rates on special categories, like groceries or gas, so you can earn as high as 3% […]

How to Earn an Extra $5,000+ This Year

22 Comments

I’ve always been a big fan of the side hustle. In fact, being self-employed is the first time I’ve ever held only one job instead of two or three (and I’m still getting used to it). A side hustle is a small extra or part-time job you take on to increase your income to reach your financial goals. Everybody should have one. Why bother with the side hustle? Because you like money, duh. Jk. You will bother with the side hustle because you did the math on your debt or savings goals and realized you’re not going to hit your targets within the next decade unless you take drastic action. If you want to compare your chances of winning the lottery to getting a job at a local cafe that will let you work two shifts per week, I’ll let you work out which one has a better chance of giving […]

Taking Charge of Your Investment Portfolio

3 Comments

I’m a huge fan of self-directed investing. Ever since I entered the stock market when I was 25, I’ve always managed my investment portfolio myself. Despite having no experience or education in finance at the time I entered the market, I’ve managed to grow a stock portfolio with patience, time, and self-directed learning. Truthfully, the best investment I made was in teaching myself the skills I needed to manage my money myself. Why it’s worthwhile to take on your own portfolio Investments such as mutual funds and robo-advisors are awesome if you want a totally hands-off approach to portfolio management. However, you do have to pay for it. Management fees might only be a few percent, but over your investing lifetime, they may eat up thousands, of dollars of returns on your portfolio. Choosing to manage your own investment portfolio will let you have control over your financial assets. And […]