PROGRAMS AND SERVICES FOR SENIORS

PROGRAMS AND SERVICES FOR SENIORS

If you or someone you know is caring for a senior you may find this list helpful. The National Institute of Aging (NIA) has created a list of current programs and services that seniors can benefit from. You can view the list here.

The list is organized by province and territory, along with nationwide resources under 4 key categories:

1. Promoting Preventive Health and Better Chronic Disease Management
2. Strengthening Home and Community-Based Care and Supports for Unpaid Caregivers
3. Developing More Accessible and Safer Living Environments
4. Improving Social Connections to Reduce Loneliness and Social Isolation

QUESTIONS FROM CLIENTS: WHAT ARE CAPITAL GAINS AND LOSSES?

QUESTIONS FROM CLIENTS: WHAT ARE CAPITAL GAINS AND LOSSES?

As we approach the end of the year, some clients may have questions about capital gains and losses that have occurred in their portfolio.

Watch this video to understand what capital gains and losses are and how they may impact your taxes.

Today we are discussing capital gains and losses.

Capital gains and losses are in reference to a taxable account and today we are discussing them as they relate to stocks, although capital property is another variety of property that they can apply to.

Capital gains and losses occur when you dispose of a stock at higher or lower than your adjusted cost base (ACB).

Your adjusted cost base (ACB) is the total price that you have paid for your stock. In addition, you can add some of the cost that you had to acquire the stock, such as commissions, to the adjusted cost base.

A capital gain occurs when you sell your stock for more than your adjusted cost base. A capital loss occurs when you sell your stock for less than the adjusted cost base.

 

Capital Gain

Let’s say you paid $100 for your stock and you sell it for $150. You would have a capital gain of $50 – the difference between your sale price, and in this example, your adjusted cost base.

Half of the $50 is taxable, so $25 would be taxable for you in the year that you dispose of the security.

 

Capital Loss

Conversely a capital loss would happen if you sold your security for $75.

You’ve incurred a loss of $25 and half of that – $12.50, can be used to reduce any capital gains that you’ve experienced in the year that you’ve sold your security, three years prior, or essentially indefinitely going forward.

 

Capital gains and losses are in reference to a taxable account (Non-Registered Accounts). They do not apply to Registered Retirement Savings Plans (RRSPs) or Tax-Free Savings Accounts (TFSAs).

Capital gains and losses can be used for tax planning, so please reach out to our team if you have a tax planning situation that you need assistance with. Learn more about the tax planning services we provide here. If you have any further questions about capital gains and losses, contact us here.

QUESTIONS FROM CLIENTS: WHAT ARE CAPITAL GAINS AND LOSSES?

QUESTIONS FROM CLIENTS: WILL I HAVE ENOUGH TO RETIRE?

This is a common question that most start to consider as they approach their retirement years. There are typically 3 phases of retirement spending that one will age through. Watch this video to learn more.

Today we’re going to talk about how much you need to retire, which is a very common question that everyone eventually asks when they’re thinking about their future years. And the answer is really not simple. However, a good gauge is how much you’re currently spending.

Most retirees find that they don’t spend a whole lot less from their working years to their retirement years. Especially in the early stages of retirement. So a good planning strategy is to make sure that you’ve got enough of a retirement income when you’re starting retirement to approximate what you’re spending in your working years.

None of us know when our expiry date is, which is a factor in understanding how much you’ll need to save to provide you with that income for a lifetime. If we knew, it would be a lot easier to plan. But what you can do is make sure that you’re looking at where all of your assets are going to be coming from. Some people have pensions through work, and of course, all of the dollars that we save for our retirement will be added together to provide that income in retirement.

Having a proper financial plan completed along with projections to ensure you know where your income is going to be coming from in your retirement, how that’s going to be taxed, and what your net result will be is very important.

When you enter retirement, we find that there tends to be three phases of retirement income needs. In your early years of retirement, you’re going to need an income quite similar to your working years as this is typically when you are in your best health and interested in pursuing some of the hobbies and activities that you didn’t have time to pursue when you were working. That typically lasts from the time that you retire until maybe 75 or 80.

Once you hit your 80s, for most people they’re going to slow down and so will your spending. Oftentimes, the spending shifts from things that you might want to buy or do to being able to shift some of your wealth to the next generation. You might be thinking about giving money to children or grandkids. And you may be just done with travel and some of the major expenditures that people tend to pursue in their early retirement years. You will still spend money, and you want to make sure you have enough income to meet the needs of those years, but it will change.

The final phase of retirement spending is the later years of retirement. That third phase tends to be a lot of a slower spend, however, the challenge with the third phase of retirement is that sometimes there are healthcare costs. Healthcare costs can be really difficult to predict. We don’t know if somebody is going to need care, and it can be particularly challenging for couples. If one person needs care while the other is able to remain at home, you can end up having double the costs of living at this stage of life.

It is really important to build a buffer into your retirement plan so that if need be, you have assets available for that phase of life and potential healthcare costs that could arise.

If you haven’t done a projection, please reach out to your advisor so that you have a good understanding of what your retirement income is going to look like and that you have everything you need to make your retirement comfortable. You can learn more about our retirement planning services and approach here.

QUESTIONS FROM CLIENTS: WHAT ARE CAPITAL GAINS AND LOSSES?

QUESTIONS FROM CLIENTS: HOW DOES AN RESP WORK?

In this edition of Questions From Clients, Kelley Doerksen, CFP®, CIM® explains how RESPs (Registered Education Savings Plans) work. Learn about some of the key concepts surrounding RESPs such as grants, contributions, and withdrawals.

RESPs are a very effective way to save money for your child’s post-secondary education as you receive grants from the Government when you make contributions to the RESP.

An RESP will provide you with a 20% grant from the Government when you make contributions. You can receive up to $500 a year in grants. However, if you’ve missed some years of making contributions, you can go back and you can receive up to $1000 a year of the current year’s grants and previous year’s missed grants. You can continue to receive grants for your child until your child is 17, so long as you’ve started making contributions prior to their age 16.

When you go to withdraw from an RESP, although there are some rules and regulations, it’s actually fairly simple. When your student starts University or Post-Secondary, so long as they’re in a qualified post-secondary institution, you can begin withdrawals.

The student will need to provide proof of enrolment, and from there, RESP withdrawals can be made. There is no limit to how many dollars of contributions that can be taken out, however in the first year of school, there is a limit to the amount of grants and growth that can be withdrawn during the first 13 weeks of school.

The nice thing about an RESP is that your contributions have already been taxed when you’ve made the contribution initially to the RESP, and you won’t pay any tax on the contributions when they are withdrawn.

The grants and the growth are going to be taxed in the hands of your child. Many students don’t pay tax or pay very minimal tax while they’re students in University; therefore an RESP is a very effective way to income split from your assets to your child and potentially see no tax on the grants and the growth when that withdrawal is made.

To learn more about the terminology and specific rules pertaining to RESP accounts, please watch this video. If you have questions about how to use an RESP, please contact us and we’d be happy to help.

QUESTIONS FROM CLIENTS: WHAT ARE CAPITAL GAINS AND LOSSES?

QUESTIONS FROM CLIENTS: HOW DOES MY PENSION WORK?

If you have a Defined Benefit Pension Plan (DB Pension), you likely have questions about how it works and how it interacts with your overall financial plan. In our latest Question From Clients video, Kelley Doerksen, CFP® explains some of the key information you need to know about these plans.

It’s common to have a pension from your employer that you contribute to and know very little about! Especially if you contribute to a “Defined Benefit” pension (often referred to simply as a DB pension). While each pension is unique, let’s look at 6 similarities:

1. Predictable Income for a Lifetime

Once retired and your pension begins, a DB pension will pay you a set amount of income for your lifetime. Some pensions also offer indexing, which will increase your income by some percentage of inflation.

2. Income for spouse or partner on death

Many DB pensions allow you to choose if your pension will continue to be paid to a spouse or partner in full upon the death of one of the pensioners, or if it will continue at a reduced rate. The choice you make at retirement will influence the amount of pension income you receive for life.

3. Guarantees

Most DB plans allow you to choose a guarantee period. This is not related to how much time you will receive your pension income for (remember, these plans pay for life), but relates to how long a death benefit would be made available to your beneficiaries upon death of the pensioner(s).

4. Commuted Value (lump sum transfer) is an option

When you leave the plan, either due to retirement or leaving the employer, most plans allow you to take a commuted value (lump sum). This lump sum can be transferred in part without immediate tax penalty to a LIRA (Locked-in Retirement Account), however often there is also a taxable portion to consider. You should always make sure that any immediate tax hit does not erode the assets available to you in such a way that you cannot equal your predicted pension income. This is a complex decision, and assistance from your financial planner will be valuable.

5. You are making contributions

Nearly all Defined Benefit pensions require a contribution from the employee as well as the employer. In fact, most DB pensions have relatively large contribution requirements of their employees in the range of 10 – 11% of your gross salary. You can be assured that the employer contributes at least as much as you do.

6. Limited Reporting

Many DB pension holders receive a statement only once annually. This is different than what you may be used to with your investment reporting. Since your value from a DB pension comes from the income you will be provided with at retirement, there is little need to receive more frequent statements as the ‘value’ is related to your years of service (and other factors), not specifically investment returns.

 

If you have questions about how your Defined Benefit Pension interacts with your overall financial plan, please reach out to us and one of our financial planners would be happy to walk you through your specific details.