A topic that I think we millennials all need to focus more on is retirement planning. And the reason I think so is because traditionally retirement planning seemed like something for older generations, and what us younger generations needed to focus on was debt-repayment and homeownership.
Listen, I know us millennials have a lot going on, but NOW is the time to start planning for retirement, not when we’re nearing it. That’s why I have Ron Haik, Senior Financial Planner & Regional Manager, Ontario at Nicola Wealth on the show to talk all about how to plan for retirement in Canada and as a millennial.
Here are some things we discussed.
A common question I get, because planning for retirement either seems too simple or too complicated. Where you start is determining what your retirement will look like. Everyone’s retirement is different, but essentially you need to answer what kind of life do you want to lead after you’ve finished your full-time career. Retirement may still include working, or maybe you want to volunteer, travel the world, or help raise your grandkids. Whatever it is, write it down then figure out how much in today’s dollars you’ll need as an annual income in order to afford that life.
For years, RRSPs were given all the attention. Although they are great vehicles for housing your investments for retirement, TFSAs are great too. They may even be better depending on your situation. You see, with RRSPs, you get that wonderful tax deduction that lowers you tax bill while allowing your money to grow tax free. But, once you withdraw funds from your RRSP, that’s when you’ve got to pay tax on that money. That also means you need make sure you’ve included income tax in your retirement budget. With a TFSA, you don’t get a tax deduction when you contribute, but when you withdraw those funds, you don’t have to pay tax either. Things to think about when considering what account type to put your investments into.
I recently did a talk on investing for a retreat, and many people there voiced how they were more comfortable with real estate investing because it made more sense to them. You were investing in something tangible and they could wrap their heads around the concept better. Real estate investing is great, but you should never put your eggs in one basket. Real estate should be a portion of your overall retirement portfolio, not the entire thing.
Once you’ve built a retirement plan, it’s not something you just put somewhere to gather dust. Your life and goals change, and so will your retirement plan with them. Make sure to revisit your retirement plan every 6 to 12 months.
For full episode show notes visit https://jessicamoorhouse.com/194
For anyone interested in startups or starting their own business (no matter how big or small), I’ve got an episode for you! For this episode of the Mo’ Money Podcast, I’m joined by Maria Aspan, the editor-at-large of Inc. Magazine and the author of the new book Startup Money Made Easy.
Maria has a unique perspective on entrepreneurship because she isn’t sharing her own entrepreneurial journey. She’s sharing what she’s learned by interviewing hundreds of entrepreneurs about their journeys. And what’s really interesting is they all have very different journeys. Sure, they are some similarities and patterns, but in general no story is alike. That’s why there can never be a one-size-fits-all guide to entrepreneurial success. What may skyrocket one person’s business may be the downfall for someone else.
In her book, she dives deep about the financial aspects of starting a business, and here are some key things she shared in this episode.
You hear stories all the time about how someone racked up a bunch of debt to get their business started…and it paid off big time and they’re now a millionaire! You don’t often hear the stories of all the people who racked up a bunch of debt and had a business that flopped. We hear a lot of success stories, and maybe not enough failure stories. When it comes to starting a business and finding that initial financing, use the same logic as investing your money for a big goal like retirement – never invest more than you’re willing to lose.
Maria mentioned that Serena Williams, famous tennis player and entrepreneur, once said that in business everyone makes mistakes. What you need to be prepared for is being open to learning from those mistakes. Usually when we make mistakes, we want to brush them under the rug, not talk about them, just move forward and forget about it. But mistakes are amazing learning tools! I’ve learned amazing things from my mistakes and failures! It’s not easy. It will definitely bruise your ego a bit. But you need to remember that success is a long-game. If you want to eventually reach your goals, you need to learn from each one of your mistakes and change your behaviours and actions accordingly.
I see so many people out there get caught up in the idea that they can start a blog, start posting on Instagram, sell an online course, make a fashion line, etc… and start making money right away. That’s no reality. The people who are telling you that you can make money blogging, Instagramming, selling courses, or selling your own clothing designs, they may have neglected to tell you that there’s no such thing as an overnight success. It takes time, hard work, and most importantly a solid plan!
Don’t ever think you can just quit your day job and figure it out. Figure it out while still working your day job. Start learning what you don’t know about running a business, and make a business plan you feel good about.
For full episode show notes visit https://jessicamoorhouse.com/193
I don’t know why exactly, but lately I’ve been hearing from my millennial clients their big concern about not being able to afford retirement. I’m talking 20 and 30 years olds freaking out because they have no idea how they’ll ever be able to save up $1 million (or most likely more) for retirement, plus pay of their student loans, buy a home, start a family, and just simply live!
So, I thought I would bring on a retirement expert who can shed some light on the most important things we all need to know about retirement. My guest for this episode is Larry Swedroe, the author of Your Complete Guide to a Successful and Secure Retirement, as well as the director of research for Buckingham Strategic Wealth and the BAM Alliance.
Here are a few things we discussed in this episode.
Most people focus on the money part. How much do I need? How should I invest to reach that number? Will it be enough? But really, you should start by outlining what you want to do when you’re actually retired. How do you want to fill your days? What’s your exit strategy from the workforce? Are you going to do a full-stop retirement or ease into retirement by going part-time or consult? Before testing out any retirement calculator, define what your retirement will look like first.
Another concern I often hear is that we’re all living longer. Many of us will live until 100! So if we retire at 65 and live until 100, that’s 35 years of retirement we need to prepare to have income for. That might make your palms sweaty, but it’s actually fairly simple math to figure out how to afford a long retirement. Larry suggests taking the number of years you plan on being retired for and multiplying it by the gross annual income you’ll need to live off of in retirement. Then, figure out how inflation will come into play, and that’s your number!
Larry shared some amazing pieces of wisdom when I asked him about how we all can be savvy investors. Here are his top tips:
For full episod show notes, visit https://jessicamoorhouse.com/192
Well, that was a few years ago now so I thought it was time to have her back on the show, but to talk about something very different. As I mentioned at the beginning of the show, we bumped into each other at Melissa Leong’s book launch for Happy Go Money and started talking about the different ways both genders think, talk and manage money. It’s a subject that Robin has been researching quite a bit lately, and one that I thought would make for a great conversation on the podcast since gender roles is a fairly hot topic right.
As humans, we all deal with money differently from one another. As the saying goes, personal finance is personal so there’s really no such thing as a one-size-fits-all financial solution. But, not only do we deal with money different as individuals, there’s a lot of research to indicate striking differences between how men and women handle money.
Here’s one of the studies that Robin mentions in the podcast by CPA Canada:
What much of the research shows is that women tend to be more risk averse or risk conscious, we struggle with financial confidence, and we tend to be better investors than men. We chat about all this and more in the episode, so enjoy!
For full episode show notes visit https://jessicamoorhouse.com/191
This is by far one of my favourite interviews on the podcast…ever! For this episode, I chat with John David Mann, and award-winning author whose books have sold more than 3 million copies, including titles such as The Go-Giver with Bob Burg and the New York Times bestseller The Red Circlewith Brandon Webb.
For his latest book The Latte Factor, which he co-authored with best-selling author and OG personal finance expert David Bach, they discuss the term that Bach coined several years ago in his popular book The Automatic Millionaire. You see, even though pretty much everyone has heard of “the latte factor,” most people don’t really know what it means. Surprisingly, it doesn’t mean you should ditch your morning coffee to save money. It’s actually bigger than that. It’s less about coffee and more about how we all need to spend our money more in line with our values, and how little bits of money over-time can have a major impact on our financial futures.
What I loved most about this book is that it’s a very short read (you can read it in a day), and it’s not a typical how-to book and written in a narrative style. Similar to how David Chilton’s structured The Wealthy Barber, this book has central characters we follow along so we can learn the same lesson they’re learning and can identify with their struggles too. I 100% could relate to the central character, a 20-something city-living millennial who feels like no matter how much they earn, they still never have enough. Who hasn’t felt like that at some point in their life? But, she learns that it’s not necessarily how much you earn that’s the problem. It’s what you do with what you earn now that is most important.
And yes I know, earning more can sometimes be a solution, but from working with so many clients now, I can tell you that cash flow usually isn’t the problem. The problem is not understanding what they are spending their money on. The problem is not having clear financial goals to work towards. The problem is not having the financial literacy necessary to make solid and confident financial decisions moving forward.
The book isn’t out quite yet (it comes out May 7), but you can pre-order now and you enter to win a free copy by visit the show notes.
For full show notes, visit https://jessicamoorhouse.com/190
Can you believe it’s been almost 4 years since Barry Choi from Money We Have on the show? We’ve been friends for years now, and he was guest number 7! Since so much has happened in our lives since that interview, I needed to have him back on the show now that he works full-time for himself as a personal finance & travel expert.
As I mentioned at the beginning of this episode, I’ve done a few unofficial meetups with podcast listeners the past few months, and the feedback I got was to have someone on the show to talk about credit card reward programs and travel tips specifically for Canadians. Well, of course I thought of Barry who is always in the news or on TV sharing his wisdom on how to get the most value out of your credit cards and how to travel on a budget without it feeling like you’re doing budget travel.
Here are some great tips and resources he shared on the show.
If travel is one of your big values in life (it is for me!), then you need to add it as a line item in your budget. Don’t just book a trip and figure out how to pay for it later. Research where you want to go, price out the cost, then start putting away amounts every month until you can afford it.
It’s what both Barry and I do, and honestly it’s the only way to afford travel without getting into debt. For me, I put away money every month for trips I take with my husband and trips I do on my own (usually work-related like conferences or retreats). In terms of how much to save, it depends on where you plan on going. As long as you’re saving a good amount for your emergency fund, retirement and your other financial goals, it’s up to you how much to save for travel.
I’ve used deal sites for years, like Kayak, Booking.com, Expedia, Trivago (you get the picture), and to me it’s the best way to get the best price for flights, car rentals and accommodation. Yes, it can take some time and effort to really figure out the best time, place and dates to travel, but it’s worth it if you can save hundreds if not thousands of dollars! Just think, that savings can be used for excursions, food or shopping to make your trip even better!
You’ve heard this tip before, but it’s true. If you want to save big, travel during that location’s off-season. I’m so used to doing this, I don’t even know what it’s like to go somewhere during the on-season. And I don’t want to! It’s actually really nice to avoid the hordes of tourists, even if it means going somewhere during spring or fall.
Here are Barry’s picks for the best no-fee credit cards in Canada. Just remember, even though it’s no fun paying an annual fee for a credit card, you usually get better benefits with those cards than no-fee cards.
For full episode show notes, visit https://jessicamoorhouse.com/189
It was one fateful day when a 17-year-old Lesley-Anne Scorgie went viral because of her financial acumen. Not only did she get featured in newspapers across Canada, she also landed a spot on the Oprah Winfrey show because she aspired to become a millionaire by 25 and was well on her way to reaching that goal.
As Lesley-Anne says in our interview together, the Oprah effect is real and her short segment on the show catapulted her career into one Canada’s top money experts today, with four books under her belt, regular TV appearances and speaking gigs. Not only that, she launched her own money coaching business called MeVest, and focuses on teaching others how they can take control of their financial future like she did.
In this episode, we discuss what inspired her to get into personal finance at such a young age, what she learned from striving towards an aggressive goal in her 20s (spoiler, she wishes she enjoyed her 20s a bit more), and what some of the most common concerns and struggles her money coaching clients have.
For full episode show notes, visit https://jessicamoorhouse.com/188
Have you ever heard from someone that if a bank fails (goes bankrupt), you’ll lose all the money you had their? Because that is 100% false! You see, there’s a little thing called the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation (CDIC) and Brad Evenson, the Director of Communications and Public Affairs of CDIC joins me for this bonus podcast episode to discuss in-depth how all Canadians are protected.
For full episode show notes, visit https://jessicamoorhouse.com/187
For this episode of the show, I interview young entrepreneur Nathan Latka who has released his first book (like…today!). It’s called How to Be a Capitalist Without Any Capital, and it’s his guidebook on how to successfully start a business or side hustle without that much money at the beginning.
You see, Nathan has a pretty interesting story. He basically realized that because of the Internet and social media, the possibilities and opportunities for making money were limitless. He’s started many businesses himself, his first being one where he built and sold Facebook pages (back when you could add apps and widgets to Facebook pages).
The reason I wanted Nathan on the show was to talk about a very important, though sometimes overlooked, topic of personal finance — making money. So many personal finance books (or experts) give advice assuming you’re an employee at a company and you’re limited by your salary. Well, that doesn’t have to be the case if you don’t want it to be.
Just take my personal finance journey. I worked numerous 9 to 5 jobs since graduating university, but I always had a second job or side hustle to earn more to I keep reach my financial goals sooner. And at that time, none of my friends or family were doing it. Luckily, I was inspired by other people in the personal finance community who were doing the same thing, so I followed suit. Now, so many of those people who thought I was crazy for working more than one job have started side hustles themselves. And that’s what I hope this episode (and Nathan’s book) help you with. Hearing that you don’t have to start out rich to become rich, you don’t have to be a born entrepreneur to start your own business or side hustle, and essentially your past should not define your future.
Another thing I really want to press is that money should never be the end goal. Building wealth isn’t solution, it’s the journey. The solution or reason you’re building wealth is so you can live a life that is meaningful to you. For me, I work hard to earn my living so I can afford to travel, have more spare time to fly back to Vancouver to visit family and friends, and sometimes just have the flexibility to take a Thursday afternoon off to read a good book when it’s snowing outside.
Why do you want to build wealth? Really define that, then check out this interview or Nathan’s book for some guidance on how to go about making that a reality.
As Nathan mentions in the podcast, his book wasn’t meant to be an evergreen book you can pick up in 20 years and it still be relevant. The business and digital marketing are evolving so quickly these days, his advice may not work even in a few years from now. So, if you want to learn what’s worked for him recently, grab a copy of his book, read it and take action NOW!
For full episode show notes visit https://jessicamoorhouse.com/186
I had Tanja Hester from Our Next Life on the show back in November 2017 for episode 133. Back then, Tanja was still an anonymous blogger who hadn’t yet quit her job yet to retire early with her husband. Well, a few months after we recorded that episode she left her job and has been officially retired ever since!
Not only that, she finally revealed her full name on her blog and the news literally went viral, being picked up by MarketWatch. Because of this, Tanja has had a very busy retired life, that includes doing speaking, writing for MarketWatch, and of course publishing her first book Work Optional: Retire Early the Non-Penny-Pinching Way.
Since so much has happened with Tanja since that first episode, I wanted to have her back on the show to talk more about what life is like in early retirement, and how you can strategize to retire early too!
Planning to retire early doesn’t start with the number crunching (or at least it shouldn’t). You need to figure out the “Why” before the “How”. Most people just think retiring early is a way they can finally opt-out of working, or subtract something from their life. Instead, you should think about it as a way to add more to your life.
As we discuss in this episode, most early retirees aren’t just chilling on a beach reading. That’s nice for a vacation, but that can get boring quick if it’s your every day. Instead, think about what things you want to do now that you don’t have to focus all your time and energy on earning an income. Maybe it’s volunteering. Maybe it’s starting some new hobbies. Maybe it’s writing a book like Tanja.
No matter what it is, retiring early isn’t about opting out of work, it’s about opting into a life that’s more fulfilling and meaningful to you.
Another thing we discuss is the idea that by retiring, that doesn’t mean you have to stop earning money…or working for that matter. Early retirement or financial independence means you don’t have to work to earn an income anymore. But, that doesn’t mean you can’t if you want to.
From talking to so many early retirees on the podcast and in real life, all of them are working in some way. Usually not full-time, but they are definitely staying active and contributing to society in some way. And yes, this means they earn money. Earning money doesn’t negate the fact that they are financially independent or retired. It just means they have extra fun money to play with.
I see and hear so many conversations about F.I.R.E. (financial independence, retire early), most of which are negative. Many people believe it’s a dangerous idea because most people will either run out of money or it’s just completely impossible because they aren’t high income earners.
As Tanja mentions, early retirement isn’t for everyone and that’s okay. Moreover, one person’s path to early retirement shouldn’t serve as a template you should try to mimic because it may not work for you. Personal finance is personal after all, so if early retirement is something you want to do, do your research, learn from other people’s journeys, then carve out your own path that’s unique to you.
For full episode show notes, visit https://jessicamoorhouse.com/185
I’ve got another repeat guest on the show, who first appeared on the Mo’ Money Podcast this time last year in episode 151 to promote her first book Worry-Free Money. I’m talking about the lovely Shannon Lee Simmons, and she’s back with her second book all about debt called Living Debt-Free.
Since her first book was essentially the feel-good personal finance book we were all looking for, Shannon’s second book does the same thing for debt. There are so many negative emotions surrounding debt, such as shame and guilt. Debt is bad right? Well, guess what…real people have debt. And they shouldn’t feel shame or guilt for having it. Shame and guilt aren’t exactly motivators to doing anything, so why would we think making people feel bad about their debt will help them get out of it.
Instead, Shannon shares stories and advice on how to tackle your debt by adopting a new positive mindset and asking yourself some of these helpful questions:
Having clear answers for these questions will help you stay on track to paying off your debt. Yes, strategies like the debt snowball and debt avalanche are helpful too, but from my experience and Shannon’s, people are more likely to get back into debt or stop their debt repayment plan because they lack positive reinforcement and motivation.
By thinking with a more positive mindset, such as “What could I add to my life once I’m debt-free?” instead of being critical of your current situation like “You’re not as well off as your peers because of your debt,” you’ll be able to change your financial picture quicker than you ever thought possible. Not only that, you’ll be able to stay out of debt because you’ll have a clearer vision for your overall finances.
Recently, there was a question that popped up in my Facebook group asking whether it was a good idea to use Emergency Fund money to pay off debt. Shannon and I both agreed that Emergency Funds should be reserved for emergencies only, not debt. Lack of emergency savings is one of the main reasons people fall into debt. Something unexpected happens, like their car breaks down, they don’t have the money to pay for it, they use credit to fix their car, now their in debt and can only afford the minimum payments.
To avoid this cycle, save up 3 to 6 months of your living expenses and put it in a high-interest savings account. Then don’t touch it until a real emergency happens. And once you touch it, make sure to pay that money back so it’s never empty.
Shannon also suggest having two Emergency Funds. One is for real emergencies that you don’t touch unless you absolutely need to. One is more of a slush fund that you are constantly contributing to, but dipping into when you need cash for unexpected expenses (that don’t fall into the emergency category).
There are only a few ways to avoid over-spending with your credit card. One way is to use debit or cash for all of your variable expenses, and just link your credit card to any of your regular fixed expenses like your cable bill, phone bill, and utilities.
Or, if you do like to use your credit card for your variable spending, set its limit to the exact amount you’ve budget for variable expenses. Then, as soon as you make a purchase with your credit card, move money from your chequing account to pay off your credit card.
That’s it! There really isn’t any other magic way to do it. Believe me, I’ve tried them and so has Shannon and these are the ones that work!
For full episode show notes, visit https://jessicamoorhouse.com/184
It’s that time of year again. You know, the time to start thinking of getting your taxes done. Most people dread it, I love it (because I’m a weirdo), but as the saying goes taxes is one of the two certainties in life.
To give you a head start this tax season, and to help you change your mindset so you don’t hate it, I’ve got Lisa Zamparo (CPA & founder of The Wellth Company) back on the show. You probably remember her from episode 137 where she joined me to discuss how to be responsible with debt and credit.
Well, she’s back and is sharing some amazing tips on how to do some tax time prep like a pro! Also, as Lisa mentioned, if you want to get one of her tax season self-care kits, sign up to work with Lisa before February 21!
Tax prep is super easy, you just need to give yourself some time and know what to do. Here are 4 steps you can take to get prepared like never before!
Step 1 – Download my tax prep checklist.
Step 2 – Get some stationary, boxes and tools that are pleasing to the eye to get you excited.
Step 3 – Actively try to switch your mindset about tax time. Remember that by taking the time right now to make a system for tax time, you won’t have to do all this heavy lifting next year. Once you’ve got a system in place, it’ll be 10x easier next time!
Step 4 – Start preparing tax return. If you want to do it on your own, use online tax software like SimpleTax, UFile, TurboTax or H&R Block’s Online Tax Software. Make sure to Google for a promo code to save money. If you need some help with your taxes, hire a professional tax accountant to help you (like Lisa!).
Step 5 – If you’re self-employed, make things easier for next year by using some online accounting software like Freshbooks, Quickbooks or Wave.
Step 6 – After you’ve filed your taxes, if you get a tax refund, be smart about it! Don’t just spend it. Use it to pay down debt or invest for your future.
For full episode show notes, visit https://jessicamoorhouse.com/183
Since it’s launch week for Season 8 of the Mo’ Money Podcast, I’ve got a bonus episode for you!
Last season, CoPower sponsored my podcast. So, I thought it would be fun to bring on Trish Nixon, Managing Director & Head of Capital of CoPower, to discuss impact investing with me.
You may or may not have heard about impact investing before, but that could be because it goes by so many different names: socially responsible investing, green investing, sustainable investing, ethical investing (you get the picture). No matter what the name, what this episode is about is being a more mindful and conscious investor.
You see, with every dollar you invest you are saying you want the companies you’re investing in to become more profitable and successful. There’s nothing wrong with that…unless the companies you’re investing in aren’t actually very ethical or don’t align with your personal values. That’s why we need to be more aware of what companies are in our mutual funds or ETFs. We need to see if there’s something we don’t like, then do something about it.
One thing you can do is negative screening. It’s basically a way to take out the worst offenders in your portfolio, or find a portfolio that doesn’t include them. This is obviously easier if you’re a DIY investor because you have more control with what companies you invest in, but as you’ll see below there are a ton of big banks and robo-advisors that are offering more SRI portfolios now too.
To give you a better sense of what kind of socially responsible investments exist, here’s a quick list of model portfolios and investment products that are considered SRI.
For full episode show notes, visit https://jessicamoorhouse.com/182
Welcome to Season 8 of the Mo’ Money Podcast y’all! I know, I know…where have I been? For the past 3 years I’ve always started a new season of the show the first week of January. Well, to tell you the truth, I only had this episode recorded before I took off to Vancouver to enjoy Christmas with my family. In other words, I wasn’t ready! And I didn’t just want to put a season together quick, I wanted to make sure this season is one of my best yet! I believe it is, starting with having the amazing Melissa Leong on the show for my first episode.
You probably are already familiar with Melissa. She was my favourite financial journalist at the Financial Post for years, then transitioned into an entrepreneur herself as a speaker, host, TV personality on The Social and now personal finance author with her new book Happy Go Money.
This book has been a decade in the works because although Melissa shares some great advice and research in it, it is also very personal. What inspired this book was her husband’s depression that got her exploring the world of happiness.
I think it’s no surprise that we’re dealing with a major happiness problem today. So many of us (myself included) are dealing with depression, anxiety and feelings of failure and unfulfillment. But that doesn’t mean we should just throw our hands up and give in. We need to get our happy back! Especially when it comes to our money.
Here are some of my favourite gems from this episode.
One of my favourite parts of the podcast was when Melissa shares her tip for keeping accountable when trying to focus on the positive, instead of complain about the negative. I find I get especially down during the winter months, so I’m going to practice this whenever I, or my husband, catch myself complaining for no real reason.
How does it work? If you find yourself or someone you know focusing on the negative, say “Give me 3!” and share 3 good things about your life, your day, or whatever you want!
Focusing on the positive takes practice, so start practicing with me today!
I find this a lot with people who I deem “negative”. You know who I mean. Those people that no matter what, everything is always the worst and nothing is ever their fault. Life just happens to them, and they sure are unlucky. Umm…no! The only way to change your life for the better is to stop acting like a victim. You need to take control of your life, your circumstances and your future. The only way to do that is to stop being a victim, take responsibility, and then take action!
This is 100% true, and not just because it’s a claim backed by research. I know so many people who swear that meditation has been the fix they’ve been looking for. I myself have even experimented with it, and when I do it regularly, I do find myself so much more happy with my present.
There are some great apps you can use to get started too like Calm and Headspace, or you can simply practice on your own. But try it out and see if you start to feel a change.
If you want to continue learning about happiness, money or both, here are some book recommendations mentioned in this episode:
For full episode show notes, visit https://jessicamoorhouse.com/181