Do Parents Have To Help?


In Rob Carrick’s most recent offering he talks about how he feels parents should be prepared to help their children out in their quest to graduate from post-secondary education without a crushing load of debt. I have also heard many other personal finance gurus claim that tough love is the best method for teaching financial awareness at a young age, and that saving for your retirement is a much more important goal than helping out your children. It seems to be one of those weird topics where smart, rational people disagree intensely. The Middle Ground Like most instances where there…

Is The Sky Really Falling?


Every time you turn on the news, or in my generation’s case, flip through the four papers you’re subscribed to on your iPhone (only after checking the ESPN app first though), you see more and more sensationalistic media coverage and “experts” talking about how the sky is falling. In fact, I think we have become so used to moving from crisis to crisis that we don’t realize in a historical context that the world is not a bad place to be right now, at least relative to what a terrible place it has consistently been in the past. In terms…

HELOC For Consumption vs Investment


It seems every other day one can open a national newspaper these days and read about someone decrying the state of the average Canadian. The experts tell us we are so far in debt that we may never climb out and that this should be more than enough to scare us straight. It likely won’t be of course, because we are addicted to debt. “Live for the moment because you deserve it!” Isn’t that what targeted advertising campaigns preach to us endlessly? The fact is that not all debt is created equal, and I actually wish that I was 151%…

Why “No More Lattes” Rarely Works


Who would’ve known that all this time we have been pouring caffeine-laced devil’s brew down our throats every morning?! If you’re not aware that the latte factor is the reason that we have poor people in the world, and are most likely the major cause of the growing income gap, increased student debt, and foreclosures, then you haven’t been reading many personal finance blogs lately. Seriously though people, what did poor lattes ever do to you? Why choose to single out that frivolous expense as opposed to our other frivolous expenses? I mean, how many people consume sodas, cigarettes, French fries,…

Public Service Compensation – The Next Bubble?


Since talking about “bubbles” is in vogue these days (ie oil bubble, real estate bubble, post-secondary bubble, etc.) I figured I’d tackle the somewhat thorny issue that appears to be creeping up more and more in this new era of austerity that we have entered in the Western World. The bubble I’m talking about of course is the public service compensation bubble. I want to point out that the views I express are not supported or indicative of those held by the owners of this blog in any way! I should state up front that I am a civil servant (teacher) and I…

A Reaction to the 2012 Canadian Federal Budget


[caption id="flickrImage_2" align="alignright" width="238"] Parliament Hill © by tsaiproject[/caption] Nothing like mixing a little politics with your personal finance to get the old blood flowing eh?  The Conservatives’ 2012 Canadian Federal budget, and their overall vision for Canada came out on Wednesday, and I believe that there is a lot more to like than there is to dislike.  Unsurprisingly, the Tories are aiming to slay our national deficit just in time for an election in 2015.  I think this is a worthy goal, and the fact that we are on pace to accomplish it while maintaining the lowest debt-to-GDP ratio in the…