Financial Planning

Many individuals confuse financial planning with general savings and investing advice. While how to save (and how much!), and where and when to invest those savings, is every bit important, prudent Financial Planning goes much beyond the realm of just saving and investing. The sooner you understand the role of financial planning in meeting your short, medium and long-term financial aspirations, the better you’ll be able to control your financial destiny.

 

A well-grounded financial plan is essential for anyone who wishes to accomplish specific financial objectives. Whether it be the idea of owning your home (sooner, rather than later!), making sure your children’s education is well funded, or ensuring a smooth and stress-free retirement; all of these seemingly separate components come together under a unified financial plan.

The scope of an effective financial plan should therefore cover key aspects such as Saving, Budgeting, Investing, Tax planning, Insurance planning, Retirement planning, Estate planning, and much more.

Our systematic approach to Financial Planning services includes: 

Discovering You

We realize that financial planning is all about YOU! And the only way that we can deliver what YOU need is to understand what those needs are. We do this through a consultative discovery approach of getting to know you, and helping you understand what we can do for you.

Strategizing

Now that our professionals have a better sense of who you are, and what you wish your financial future to look like, we can work together to create a financial strategy that will help you fulfil those financial objectives.

Holistic Planning

Cookie cutters don’t work for us – and we believe they don’t serve the interest of our clients either. Through our systematic strategy-building process, we’ll create a set of personalized, holistic plans – for the short, intermediate and long-term, that will help fulfil your overall financial strategy. Our planning process is intensive, and we do it using a consultative and evolving approach. Each session brings us closer to helping you achieve the financial objectives that we set out together, during the Discovery phase.

Implementation

Now that the plans are in place, we’ll walk you through the process of implementing them. Whether it’s making the right investment decisions, choosing the right insurance plan for you and your family, saving enough (and regularly) to reach your retirement goals, or creating an Estate Plan that preserves your legacy; our qualified Financial Planners will be right there by your side as you take each step. Through foresight, encouragement and professionalism, we’ll make sure each step of the plan is successfully implemented.

Frequent Reviewing and Monitoring

While we’ll laud you at every successful implementation of your financial plan, we’ll stay vigilant throughout the process to make sure you stay on track to meet each of the objectives set out in the plan. Through constant monitoring, and frequent reviews with you, we’ll consult with you and make modifications to the strategies and plans as and when needed.

Insurance

Insurance is essential to any comprehensive financial security plan. If tragic events like death, disability or critical illness strike, insurance can protect you and your family from undue hardship. Some life insurance policies also provide tax-advantaged savings that you can draw on to achieve goals like buying a house or retiring comfortably.

We have access to a variety of insurance products that can help meet your financial security planning needs. No matter your personal situation—if you’re single or in a family; a professional or a seasonal employee; an executive or small business owner—we will work together to design a customized plan.

 

In the event of death, life insurance offers surviving family members increased financial security. As a tax-free lump sum payment, it can pay for final expenses and debts, as well as provide income for the deceased’s dependents.

The advantages of life insurance include:

  • An estate for your loved ones at a time when funds are most needed
  • Death benefits that are almost always non-taxable for named beneficiaries
  • Avoid probate costs if you name a beneficiary other than your estate
  • Potentially offer your loved ones creditor protection through some life insurance plans
  • Build tax-advantaged capital for retirement purposes or provide liquid savings through some permanent life insurance plans

We can help you select coverage from a variety of life insurance options to meet the needs identified in your financial security plan.

Life insurance can play a vital role in your financial security plan.

Income is important for both current financial obligations (e.g. grocery bills and mortgage payments) and for future financial security (e.g. planning for your children’s education or for retirement). Just think what might happen if you suddenly lost your income stream through a long-term illness or disability.

Long-term care and disability insurance products help protect your ability to earn an income, which can be affected if you are afflicted by a disability or other condition.

We can help you choose the long-term care and disability insurance products that provide advantages like:

  • Helping maintain your financial independence, lifestyle and long-term financial security plan in the event your income is impacted by disability
  • Assist with paying fixed expenses for your business if you become disabled
  • Support the buy-out of a disabled partner’s share of a business

We can help you tailor your financial security plan so it protects your income through long-term care and disability insurance.

Suffering a critical illness is distressing for both you and your family. Help ease the burden through insurance that will reduce financial stresses and can complement disability and life insurance protection needs. By helping pay for the additional expenses often associated with a critical illness or condition, insurance offers you, your family, and if applicable, your business, added financial security—so you can focus on recovery.

The advantages of critical illness insurance can include:

  • Coverage for up to 22 critical illnesses or conditions
  • An initial lump-sum benefit you can use however you wish—from making mortgage payments to seeking medical treatment outside Canada
  • Even if you’re not disabled from working, you may receive payment
  • The ability to provide a return of premium benefit (optional)
  • Individuals who cannot obtain disability insurance in some cases still qualify for critical illness coverage (e.g. a non-income earning spouse)

Let us help you determine whether critical illness insurance fits into your financial security plan.

Depending on your situation, you may or may not be covered under an employer’s group benefits plan. If not, we can help you choose a health and dental plan that can help cover out-of-pocket medical and dental expenses for you and your family. These plans are designed to provide various levels of enhanced healthcare protection, depending on your needs and the stage of life you’re in.

When designing your customize heath and dental insurance package, you can choose from an array of services. Options include:

  • Prescription drugs, which many consider one of the most valuable forms of health coverage.
  • Paramedical services, ranging from the use of an ambulance to a visit to the massage therapist.
  • Vision care if you or your family members wear glasses or contact lenses.
  • Protection while on vacation or a business trip with out-of-country medical coverage.
  • Access to private or semi-private hospital rooms.
  • Dental care can include basic dental work as well as a portion of orthodontics, depending on your level of coverage.

In today’s working environment, valued employees are looking for more than financial compensation. They also want an employer who supports their health, and the health of their families.

For this reason, either by itself or paired with group insurance products, consider attracting and retaining employees with group benefit plans. From traditional health and dental benefits to alternative arrangements like employee wellness programs, group auto insurance or flexible work situations, group benefits help make employees more efficient, productive, and happy. Employers also gain tax benefits, such as premiums that are deductible as a business expense in some cases.

Flexible plans offer employers and employees cost-effective, customized ways to address their needs. Choose from an array of benefits like:

  • Extended health and dental care coverage, which includes options like prescription drugs, paramedical services, vision care, out-of-country medical coverage, basic dental work and orthodontics
  • Group life insurance
  • Group short- and long-term disability insurance
  • Employee assistance and wellness programs
  • Alternative group benefits, such as group auto insurance or flexible work arrangements
  • Group critical illness coverage, to help ensure your employees can survive a critical illness
  • Benefits plans tailored to specialized employee groups, such as foreign or part-time workers

Investments

Investments, including mutual funds and term deposits, can play a key role in your financial security plan. For individuals, a mix of registered and non-registered savings, income and pension plans can help achieve short- and long-term goals. For employee groups, we can offer advice on registered and non-registered savings and pension plans.

 

A registered retirement savings plan (RRSP) has several advantages. For investors under 72, it can allow tax-deferred compound interest and help accumulate savings to achieve long-term retirement goals. It also allows for a variety of choice of specific investment options. For families with children, a registered education savings plan (RESP) can help finance post-secondary education.

Some of the advantages of RRSPs and RESPs include: 

  • Tax-deductible RRSP contributions
  • Tax deferral of compounding income and growth
  • Based on a family’s net income and the amount contributed, a government RESP grant is available
  • When money is withdrawn from an RESP, the student typically pays little tax, due to a low income tax rate

Working together, we can examine RRSP and RESP investment options in order to build a customized portfolio that takes into consideration your financial security goals, tolerance to risk and timeline.

The Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA) is a flexible, registered, general-purpose savings vehicle that allows Canadians to earn tax-free investment income to more easily meet lifetime savings needs. The TFSA complements existing registered savings plans like the Registered Retirement Savings Plans (RRSP) and the Registered Education Savings Plans (RESP).

How the Tax-Free Savings Account Works:

  • Investment income earned in a TFSA is tax-free.
  • Withdrawals from a TFSA are tax-free.
  • Unused TFSA contribution room is carried forward and accumulates in future years.
  • Withdrawals made from your TFSA in the year will only be added back to your TFSA contribution room at the beginning of the following year.
  • Choose from a wide range of investment options such as mutual funds, Guaranteed Investment Certificates (GICs) and bonds.
  • Contributions are not tax-deductible.
  • Neither income earned within a TFSA nor withdrawals from it affect eligibility for federal income-tested benefits and credits, such as Old Age Security, the Guaranteed Income Supplement, and the Canada Child Tax Benefit.
  • Funds can be given to a spouse or common-law partner for them to invest in their TFSA.
  • TFSA assets can generally be transferred to a spouse or common-law partner upon death.

In a segregated fund policy, professional fund managers invest in a variety of individual securities. Depending on the performance of the segregated funds you select, your investment’s unit values will increase or decrease.

As a form of life insurance, it’s important to note that segregated fund policies have distinct advantages for some investors. These can include:

  • Potential for creditor protection
  • Savings on potential probate fees
  • No trustee fees

Note that any amount allocated to a segregated fund may increase or decrease in value and is invested at the risk of the policyholder.

For business owners, group retirement and savings plans can play a key role in attracting and retaining quality employees.

Just like you, your dedicated employees are working towards a safe, secure future. Either provided independently or paired with group benefits, a group savings plan is a convenient, flexible and affordable way to help your employees reach their long-term financial goals.

Employees gain instant tax savings for their Group RRSP contributions, since they are made using pre-tax payroll deductions. They also receive the peace of mind that comes from knowing every month they are building towards retirement.

We can help you and your valued employees choose group retirement and savings products. We will design an investment plan tailored to fit the needs of everyone involved. Choose from products like:

  • Registered retirement savings plans designed specifically for groups
  • Deferred profit sharing plans
  • Defined contribution pension plans
  • Non-registered savings programs

Business Owners

When you are full of ideas for starting a new business, all you can see is what’s going to happen tomorrow. The thought of having their vision turned to reality often blinds new entrepreneurs to that all-important question: Does it all makes sense financially? While passion is key to turning vision into a functional business, prudent financial planning is critical to ensure that reality comes to fruition and continues to survive and thrive!

 

Just as even the savviest of pilots can’t always fly blind all the time, so too is the case with business owners. Meticulous financial planning, for the short-term, in the intermediate period, and for the long-term horizon, is vital if a business is to succeed.

Without sound financial planning, even the best of business ideas will soon falter and perish. Business financial planning is the lifeblood for any venture to succeed, expand and flourish in the long run.

Here’s how our Business Financial Planning solutions can help you:

Contingency Planning

Emergencies and unforeseen situations can arise anytime during the life of the business. It takes savvy financial advice to ensure you have the financial safety net to successfully weather the business through such events.

Taxation

Most jurisdictions offer a number of tax incentives to business owners, so that they might create, expand and continue operating in those jurisdictions. Unfortunately, many business owners are either unfamiliar of the tax-friendly nature of such incentives; or they underutilize them to the detriment of their business. Leave it to our experts to help you understand such incentives so you can apply them to minimize your business taxes.

Asset Acquisition

Whether you choose to own an asset outright for your business, or ensure its use through other means, will depend on the financing options available to you. We can help you make buy versus rent, versus lease decisions that are right for you.

Debt Management

Is it best to borrow against business assets? Or should consider refinancing? Or would it make sense to dispose-off some assets to finance debt? These are every-day decisions that we help business owners make.

Employee Retention

No business is ever successful without satisfied employees. We’ll work with you to help offer attractive remuneration, compensation and benefits packages to your employees, that will motivate them to consider making a long-term career with you and your company.

Retirement, Estate and Legacy Planning

And when it’s time for you to call it quits, we’ll be right there to ensure you are able to enjoy the fruits of your hard work. Through careful planning, we’ll not only make sure you enjoy a comfortable retirement, but that your legacy passes seamlessly to your next generation of successors.