FIVE OF OUR FAVOURITE WAYS TO INCREASE YOUR SAVINGS

We all want to increase our wealth, yet somehow giving up lattes and eating out never seems to last more than a month. Eventually we realize that the saving tips provided by endless books and websites are simply ineffective and we revert to our old ways of spending. Don’t give up yet – we have compiled our top five ways to actually increase your savings.

1: Use various credit cards for different circumstances

Be careful. We are not saying that you should hold multiple credit cards so that you can spend more. But rather, different credit cards come with different benefits and cash-back rates, so you should take advantage of them accordingly. For example, the Simplii Cash Back Visa offers 4% cash back on restaurant transactions, but only 0.5% on other payments, while the Scotiabank Momentum Visa Infinite offers 4% on groceries. By using different credit cards to maximize your cash back, you are saving money on everyday purchases that you would have been making anyway.

2: Don’t pay more taxes than you need to

At MrTaxes.ca, it Is our mission to allow each Canadian to pay the least amount of tax by law, and after doing this for over 30 years, we’d say we’re pretty good at it. We also offer a FREE 10-Year Tax Review service, where we analyze your tax returns from the past ten years to uncover any credits that you may have missed to get the money back into your pocket. You can take advantage of this great service here.

3: Buy your gifts in advance

We’ve all been there. It’s the day before or even the day of the celebration where a gift is required, and in your panic, you spend more on a gift than you would have if you had been more prepared, to avoid showing up empty-handed. Although it is difficult to prioritize buying a gift, it is highly beneficial to keep an eye out for sales or deals going on at places where the recipient may enjoy receiving something from. You should also try getting your Christmas shopping done during Black Friday sales – don’t worry, you will not need to join the crowds if that’s not something you enjoy, most Black Friday sales now run through the weekend as well!

4: Drink at home

If you enjoy having a drink at restaurants, consider inviting a friend over and having it at home instead. Ordering drinks at a restaurant can increase your bill exponentially, and they are often very watered down! According to The Motley Fool, drinks at restaurants are marked up an average of 20-30%!

5: Unsubscribe from marketing emails

Marketing email campaigns are only getting better and smarter at identifying products you like and convincing you to buy them. Thus, the best way to avoid falling under their spell is to stop receiving their messages entirely by unsubscribing to their emails. This way, you will not be swayed by the personalized product recommendations, promotions, or new arrival notifications. However, we recommend staying subscribed to email flyers from organizations that you cannot avoid purchasing from, such as grocery stores, so you can compare pricing and ensure that you are getting the best deal possible for your necessities. (note: our emails are always trying to help increase your wealth so it is a good idea to subscribe to them!!)

Overall, the best strategy for saving is to identify your why. It is incredibly difficult to be successful in saving without knowing why or what it is that you are saving for. Once you have recognized why you are taking these measures to save, it will become much easier.

IS IT POSSIBLE TO WORK IN THE FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRY WITHOUT A DEGREE?

The short answer? Absolutely. Having not gone to college at all, the founder of MrTaxes.ca Inc. is living proof of it himself. Unless you are interested in positions like Chief Financial Officer, Finance Director, or Accounting Manager, there are several great opportunities available for candidates without an accounting degree or professional designation.

WHAT CAREERS ARE THERE, EXACTLY?

  1. Tax Preparer: you do not need a degree, but filing taxes can be daunting if you have minimal experience, so it is highly beneficial to obtain some education in tax preparing. If you are interested in becoming a tax preparer, we highly recommend becoming a Certified Tax Preparer by completing the www.CTPCanada.ca course. This online course has been certified by the Government of Canada and only costs $599.00 to provide you with a comprehensive understanding of tax filing in Canada. As a tax preparer, you will be responsible for filing personal and/or corporate taxes, GST and other filings and connecting with clients throughout the process. Common traits of a successful tax preparer include being meticulous and accurate in their work while keeping up with changes in taxation laws. 

  2. Bookkeeper: the bookkeeper is responsible for recording all the transactions made by the company into their general ledger, which is often done through software. These transactions include both expenses and income, and it is imperative that the data is entered accurately. Bookkeepers are often also responsible for using this information to prepare financial statements, such as the income statement, balance sheet, cash flow statement and statement of changes in equity.

  3. Mortgage Broker: although you do not need a degree, you will need to get your mortgage license. In British Columbia, this is done by completing the Mortgage Brokerage in British Columbia course at the University of British Columbia. As a mortgage broker, your role is to connect clients who are looking to get a mortgage with the most suitable mortgage lenders for that client. You apply for the loan on your client’s behalf by gathering and submitting the required documents.

  4. Insurance Broker: similar to becoming a mortgage broker, you need to be licensed. To obtain a license in British Columbia, you must pass the Fundamentals of Insurance exam or the Canadian Accredited Insurance Broker 1 (CAIB 1) exam and then the LLQP qualifying exam, administered by the Insurance Brokers Association of British Columbia (IBABC). As an insurance broker, you assess the insurance needs of your client and connect them with insurers that provide coverage and rates that best suit the client. Successful insurance brokers possess excellent interpersonal and customer service skills to sell plans and maintain long-term relationships with the client.

WHAT NEXT?

Our list is definitely not exhaustive, as there are many more opportunities out there that do not require a degree. If you are interested in working with a leading financial services company, we would love to hear from you – whether you have a degree or not! Check out www.MrTaxes.ca/opportunity for our current openings.

WHAT IS CRA MY ACCOUNT AND WHY YOU SHOULD GET ONE

We get it. You already have so many online accounts and you can barely remember the passwords to any of them. Or maybe you think that anything that has to do with your financials should remain strictly offline for the sake of confidentiality. Regardless of your reasoning, we advise you to register for a Canada Revenue Agency My Account.

WHAT IS MY ACCOUNT?

My Account is a secure, online portal offered by the Government of Canada that allows you to access your income and benefit information. This includes all of your income statements, notices of assessment, RRSP and TFSA information, and much more. You can also use My Account to complete tasks such as tracking your refund, setting up direct deposit, and updating your address. Overall, registering for My Account provides you with rapid access to valuable information and functions.

STILL NOT CONVINCED?

Here are some more reasons why you should register:

  1. See your documents right away once they have been processed, rather than waiting for them to come in the mail – this also saves the environment!
  2. Update your information online rather than waiting on hold on the phone (for up to an hour!!) or mailing it
  3. You never know when you may need the documents available on My Account – i.e.: proof of income documents are often needed for mortgage applications
  4. You can claim deductions and credits that you missed from as far back as 10 years, so it is highly valuable to review your documents!

HOW DO I REGISTER?

The final reason for registration (as if you needed another one) is that it is incredibly simple. To start your registration, click here. All you need is:

  • Your Social Insurance Number
  • Your date of birth
  • Your current postal code
  • Your current/previous year tax return (will request information from a specific line)

That’s it! After initial registration, you will gain access to a limited array of services until you receive your security code in the mail, which generally takes between 5-10 business days. For a full list of services, click here. You have now successfully made your life easier for a long time to come.

If you are needing these documents for your clients you can share this post or use a service that we provide at www.MrTaxes.ca/poi to obtain documents for clients within 24 business hours. Ask about our referral program.