Can I withdraw from RRSPs to pay bills? + MORE Apr 20th

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How much are withholding taxes on RRSPs and RRIFs? Jun 15th

I need to withdraw $6,600 from my RRIF over the next six months. This amount is in addition to my annual minimum. If I do the withdrawals in six monthly amounts of $1,100 (total of $6,600), will the tax withholding rate be 10% on each $1,100, or will it be a higher rate on the total $6,600 over the .... More »

Bear markets: What’s a long-term investor supposed to do right now? + MORE Jul 13th

My mutual funds are doing terribly, and I know they always say that it is better to stay the course and ride out this market crash and whatever. But I’ve been thinking about divorcing my big bank for awhile now. I have RRSP with mutual funds that have high management fees with RBC, slightly b.... More »

U.S. withholding tax in an RRSP for Canadians + MORE Aug 3rd

I have EPD stock in my RRSP for their dividend payments (about 7%). What a surprise I had—even when in an RRSP—I had to pay about 30% tax on these dividends. EPD is registered in Louisiana. —Wanda How much is withholding tax on U.S. dividends? I am going to provide a brief summary of U..... More »

Making sense of the markets this week: August 28 + MORE Aug 31st

Kyle Prevost, editor of Million Dollar Journey and founder of the Canadian Financial Summit, shares financial headlines and offers context for Canadian investors. Banking on stability and caution Canadian investors love their banks. Year in and year out, banks provide dependable dividend growt.... More »
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Making sense of the markets this week: July 3 + MORE Jul 6th

While regular “Making sense of the markets” columnist Kyle Prevost is on vacation, Dale Roberts and I are filling in. Dale’s piece ran last week, and it’s my turn this week. Dale will return next week, after which a well-rested Kyle will resume.  Speaking of Dale, this week he wrote .... More »
Million Dollar Journey editor and Canadian Financial Summit founder Kyle Prevost shares financial headlines and offers context for Canadian investors.

If a TFSA and an RRSP had a child: The new FHSA

As part of the 2022 budget, the government unveiled its new tax-free first home savings account (FFHSA, but I prefer FHSA as it’s less of a mouthful). And it will be a great way for first-time homebuyers to save up part of their down payment. In a nutshell, here’s what to know about the FHSA:

It allows Canadians to save and invest $8,000 per year, up to a lifetime maximum of $40,000.If you miss contributing in a year, you can’t “make up for it” by carrying forward contribution room in the years to come like you could with a tax-free savings account (TFSA) or a registered retirement savings plan (RRSP).It blends the tax refund benefits that we love with the RRSP, along with the no-strings-attached non-taxation of withdrawals that the TFSA is famous for.Investment income from interest, dividends or capital gains are yours to keep tax-free…

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What are the cons to withdrawing RRSP savings of $25,000 to pay off some unexpected bills I have incurred?—Anonymous

Withdrawing RRSPs when you’re not retired

Ahh, the unexpected bills.

Anonymous, I’ll give you my initial thoughts first, and then I’ll review the cons of withdrawing from your registered retirement savings plan (RRSP) to pay off unexpected bills.

Assuming you’ve incurred the debt yourself and you’re not desperate—and I mean really desperate—don’t pay your bills with an RRSP withdrawal.

You acquired the debt on your own, so I recommend figuring out a way to pay it off without cashing in investments or consolidating loans.

When unexpected bills arrive, cash flow issues are normally the underlying culprit; either not enough income or too much spending. 

What can you do to increase your income or reduce your spending so you can pay off your bills? 

Withdrawing from your RRSP may seem like the easy way out. Paying off a debt by cashing in an RRSP or consolidating loans is just a temporary fix, and it starts a cycle…

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