YourStyle Financial
Award Winning Financial Planner

Doug Buss in The Free Press Offering Award-Winning Advice

The team at YourStyle Financial is excited to see Doug in the news again. This time the Free Press has highlighted Doug’s extensive career serving clients in Winnipeg.

As Joel Schlesinger states “Then it might come as a surprise that the veteran has only recently received the Distinguished New Advisor of the Year Award, for 2022.”. Anyone who’s even spoken with Doug knows this award acknowledges everything he stands for.

“So while Buss may be an experienced certified financial planner, his most recent accomplishment and the accompanying award speak to the fact he never stops learning.”

Continuous growth and advancement are a point of pride for Doug and the YourStyle team.

Here is the link to the full article and we would love for you to read it. :

If you’d like to experience Doug’s knowledge and experience to determine “What’s Important to You?”, we would love to help you with all of your financial planning needs. Contact us today.

Spring 2022

Spring 2022

Planning Your Lifestyle with YourStyle Financial

Doug Buss interviewed with Richard Rosin about planning your lifestyle with YourStyle Financial. Listen to the explanation of the four phases of planning.

There are 3 Beneficiaries to Your Estate

If you have a will, you have a choice on what you would like to happen with your money once you are gone. We often think of the beneficiaries of our estate as loved ones. But a beneficiary can be any person or entity you choose to leave money or assets to. The top three are:

  1. Family
  2. Charities
  3. CRA

Who do you care most about??

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Life Insurance

Nobody needs Life Insurance, they need CA$H

For many, the last two years have made a lot of people more attentive to two things; money and mortality – both of which are the pinnacle of adulting. They’re also both the two things no one likes to think about. For most, there’s not enough of either money or time. But when the time comes, will there be enough money?

If you’re evaluating your accounts and expenditures and deciding where you can cut costs, are you wondering if your life insurance policy is worth the monthly premiums? Is it a necessary expense? Is it something you need and why? Let’s explore those questions.

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Education Workshops for Real Estate Agents

Real Estate Agents Can Incorporate Starting Next Year

For the first time in history, Realtors will be allowed to establish Personal Real Estate Corporations (PREC). This is a wonderful opportunity that will permit you to manage your business.

Benefits of Incorporation

  • Lower tax rate on first $500,000 of PREC net income = 9%
  • Limited Liability Protection
  • Tax efficient Planning – income splitting opportunities
  • Health Spending Account – 100% write off your medical/dental expenses against your commissions
  • Insurance & Investment Opportunities – tax free retirement income
  • Personal Pension Plan Contributions vs Canada Pension Plan (CPP) – Tax Efficient

Register for our Education Workshop

To learn more, we are hosting two live 1 hour education workshops specifically designed for Real Estate Agents.

Session 1

When: November 23, 2021

Time: 11:00 AM

Where: Zoom

Session 2

When: November 24, 2021

Time: 300 PM

Where: Zoom

Register Now

Please contact Maria to confirm your spot or call 204-474-2929.

Don’t You Want to Save on Interest?

Calling All Millennial Women: Your Finances Need You

In our last blog we discussed the results from the USB survey indicating the deferral of financial planning by women to their partners. If you recall, the highest demographic for this was millennial women. Millennials are famous for being an easy target for mockery but perhaps it’s time for the prior generations to help them pull up their bootstraps when it comes to financial planning. Millennials are the fastest growing group in the workforce and are dealing with the challenges of graduating during a recession and the continued wage gap. Combine these factors with the likelihood of taking time away to have children and a longer lifespan, it’s more important than ever to master finances and long-term planning. Another layer of complexity is that most millennials are raised by parents who live with high debt-ratios. Baby-boomers were raised with a fear of owing money and made a concentrated effort to avoid it and to pay it back as quickly as possible. The next generations were handed credit like candy and indulged. Learning by example may not be the best course of action, so we’ve compiled some advice for the up-and-coming.

  1. Spend Carefully. Along the same lines as “think before you speak”, think before you buy. Evaluate what long-term benefit that item is going to bring to you. When it comes to the nickel and dime type expenses such as your daily dose of fancy coffee, invest in a fancy espresso machine at home.
  2. Build an Escape Plan. Life often throws challenges our way and true power comes from being able to choose your own path. Having some cash squirrelled away allows you to make the choices which are right for you and prevent you from returning back to what was keeping you in debt.
    1. Set up an automatic deposit from your paycheck to an account which you are not able to easily access. That way you never had the money, so you can’t miss it.
    2. Funnel your wins. Instead of “treating” yourself with your birthday gifts, tax return or bonus, treat your future self by putting it into your savings account.
    3. Manage Your Debt. You’ve grown up in an era of credit and debts from student loans to car loans to credit cards. Make a list of all you owe and the corresponding interest rates. This will enable you to prioritize which debts you want to pay off the quickest. High-interest debts should be the first target to stop the cycle of handing your money to an institution.
    4. Save for Your Future. It’s hard to look that far forward when you’re in your 20’s, but imagine the freedom of being able to live your life your way when you’re older. With a few sacrifices, you can save now and play later.

The millennial generation espouses the importance of equality, empowerment and independence. As a millennial, it is your responsibility to implement changes in your life which align with your values. If you want to be in control of your destiny, you need to control your money. Money brings freedom and freedom brings independence. If you’d like some help taking your first steps towards your financial future, we’d love to meet with you.]]>

Empowerment and Equality and Your Finances

The slogan “girl power” has been used for decades to encourage and celebrate female empowerment, independence, and confidence. The term used most often relates to sports and employment; however, new studies are showing that women need to exert their girl power when it comes to finances and financial planning. A recent study released by UBS shows that 58% of women worldwide defer long-term financial decisions to their spouses. This study included nearly 3,700 high-net-worth married women, widows and divorcees in nine countries. The results of the study showed that 85% of women were responsible for the day-to-day finances; just not the long-term. What is really interesting is the generational span of this survey and, most notably, the generation most likely to allow someone else to control their decisions: millennials! Millennials are a generation well known for promoting equality and empowerment. Unfortunately, the survey results indicate the helicopter-style parenting millennials were raised with, where someone else is always ensuring their well-being, has bled into the financial realm. Fifty-nine percent of millennial women aged 20 – 34 are more likely to allow their spouse to take the lead compared to 55% of women over 50. The general excuse from the younger women is they have “more urgent responsibilities than investing and financial planning”. Even more contradictory to the equality movement is they “believe their spouses know more about long-term finances than they do”. The challenge this arrangement poses is the lack of preparation and understanding should a life event such as death or divorce occur. The report noted that 74% of the widowed and divorced women it surveyed reported “discovering negative financial surprises after a divorce or death of their spouse.” Hindsight resulted in 74% of these respondents wishing they had been more involved in long-term financial decisions while they were married, rather than trying to navigate them while coping with such significant life changes.” The ideal solution is for both partners in a relationship to be aware of both the short- and long-term aspects of their finances. Whether you are married, engaged, common-law or committed, financial planning is another part of creating a responsible long-lasting arrangement between two parties. In this age, knowledge really is power. So be powerful, take control of your money. Like the saying goes, the first step is recognizing the problem. Take the next step in addressing the problem and book an appointment for yourself and your partner with one of our Financial Planners and begin your journey.

RRSP Advice

The Time to Invest in Your Future is Now. Not Next Year.

As 2018 becomes a shadow of the past and 2019 shines its opportunity upon us, it brings us closer to “that time of year”. Tax time. If you’ve ever seen The Lion King, saying tax time is like whispering Mufasa and watching the Hyena’s shiver. Now is the time where talk turns to deductions and retirement investments before the February cut-off for contributions. Now the shadow of 2018 is rearing its ugly head as it’s there to remind you that you had all year. You’re not alone. Millions of Canadians wait until Spring to start thinking about their RRSPs, and with a heavy heart they sigh and think “I’ll do better next year”. However, next year is already this year and it’s unlikely any signification changes have been made. Life has gotten back to normal after the holidays and lives have become a whirlwind of school, work, sports, family and just trying to manage life. Soon it will be summer and Manitoba will do it’s typical slow down where cottages become priority. Then school starts again and before you know it, it’s already the holiday season again. After which, you’ll sigh and say “I’ll do better next year”. The good news is, you can do something about it now. Instead of scrambling to put together a good contribution, perhaps this year (yes, this year) is the year to take an easier approach. RRSP loans strategies such as gross up, are a great way to boost your RRSP savings while minimizing interest rates Interest rates are quite low right now, and the gross up strategy is a great way to take advantage of that. Consider this scenario. You have $5000 to contribute to an RRSP, you’re sitting in the 40$ marginal tax rate and your RRSP limit allows for more than $5000. If you borrowed $4000, that would give you $9000 to invest in your RRSP. Based on the aforementioned scenario, you can anticipate receiving approximately $3600 in a tax refund which you can use to pay down the loan. This part takes self-control to apply those funds to the loan instead of self-indulgence. Remember, you’re indulging in the long-term plan using this approach. Depending on your stage of life, current income and debt ratio, there are numerous ways to invest in your future goals. Between RRSPs, high-interest saving accounts, TFSAs and GICs, it can be overwhelming to determine which route to take. A Financial Planner can help guide you on these options and what fits best for you.

Planning for Perception or Preference?

Unfortunately, we are not bears and are not afforded the luxury of shutting ourselves down for a few months. At a time where all you want to do is snuggle under a blanket on the couch and binge watch all the shows you missed while doing yardwork, the demands of family, friends and work dramatically increase. Tis the season of holiday shopping, parties and entertaining. Tis the season to exert extreme drain on our energy, wardrobe and pocketbook. Tis the season to spend. Before you start making your list and checking it twice, it may be time to ask yourself why. Here’s a few scenarios:

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Make it About Memories, Not Money

  1. Grand Beach. This huge stretch of soft sand beach and sand dunes is only a one-hour drive from Winnipeg. This beautiful beach has been listed world-wide as an experience to be had and so many locals have yet to make the trip. It’s a great getaway for a day and offers camping, motels and cottage rentals for longer stays.
  2. Birds Hill Park. Located a very short drive from the city, this vastly under-utilized year round provincial park offers a slew of activity choices. Paved and natural trails allow for biking, rollerblading and hiking. There are horse stables and quite often Polo games are available for viewing. There is a campground with choices of basic, electrical or full service camping and a beach with food and beverage options.
  3. Little Limestone Lake. A little longer trip, but the closest to the Caribbean you can get when you don’t live near the ocean. It is the biggest and best marl, colour-changing lake in the world.
  4. Whiteshell Provincial Park. Part of the Canadian Shield landscape about 1.5 hours east of Winnipeg, is a treasure trove of natural resources. This park is filled with wildlife as the wilderness is quite undisturbed. If you’re looking to spend time at the lake, there are beaches, waterfalls, rapids, diving, sailing, swimming and waterskiing as just a few choices.
  5. Assiniboine Zoo. An absolute gem located right within the city and one of the most beautiful urban parks the zoo offers a plethora of experiences for young and old. Right now you have the chance to see the incredibly endangered snow leopards. The two little cubs are just settling into their new enclosure and are still awaiting their names. Included in the regular admission this summer, the new attraction Xtreme BUGS is being offered for a limited time. One of the biggest attractions, literally, is the polar bears whom you can see in action without travelling to the North.

This is such a small sampling of the destinations available in Manitoba. If you love to travel and experience the outdoors, this is a great place to do it without having to hurt your wallet. Now, get out there and experience all there is to do in Manitoba!

What You Need to Know When Preparing for Your 2017 Tax Return

Caregivers Are you a caregiver of a family member with a physical or mental impairment? If so you may be eligible for the Canada Caregiver Amount tax credit. The government recognizes the extra financial responsibility being a caregiver can have on your finances. This year determining if you qualify for the credit will be much simpler. Education Until recently, only post-secondary level course tuition qualified for a tax credit. If you took other courses at an educational facility, these fees weren’t eligible. With the recent changes, courses such as second language skills and occupational improvement courses such as computer skills may allow you to benefit in more ways than intellectually. While this option was added, the credit for post-secondary textbooks has been eliminated. This did not affect the tuition tax credit nor the ability to carry forward unused education and textbook amounts from years prior.  Parents The Children’s Fitness and Arts Tax Credits were eliminated in 2017. Transportation It appears the tax credit for utilizing public transit was not enough motivation for travellers to change their transport habits. Therefore, the public transit credit was eliminated mid-year 2017. If you used public transportation in 2017, this is your last chance to claim this benefit as amounts purchased for travel between Jan 1 and June 30, 2017 are still eligible. Infertility Treatments Financial help has become reality for those needing medical assistance to conceive. As of 2017, infertility treatments are now included as an eligible medical expense. As an additional benefit, this has been made retroactive. Meaning if you have received fertility treatments within the past ten years, you can request adjustments of past returns. These are just a few of the highlights for the 2017 tax filing, not that taxes are ever a highlight. While it’s great to know how to benefit during the current tax season, maybe it’s time to start planning to benefit next year. Financial Planners are able to look at your current and future finances and create the most beneficial plan for you.

How to Financially Survive Divorce

Most people have been exposed to divorce either directly or indirectly and can attest to the impact it has on all involved. Some people avoid the couple and some get far too involved. One of the most damaging aspects of divorce is the financial damage that can be caused if you don’t address the money side as soon as possible.
A “friend of a friend” had been married for a number of years when they found out their spouse was cheating. Emotionally devastated, this friend didn’t know the steps to take to protect themselves. So while they sorted through how they felt and where they wanted to go, their spouse was spending all their money and amassing a large amount of debt. By the time next steps were decided, this friend was now financially responsible for half of the debt.
If this were you, would you know the steps to protect yourself from that level of financial destruction? Did you know if you are directly involved in a divorce, one of the people that can help is your Financial Advisor. At YourStyle Financial, we can help you organize your financial information which will allow you to effectively and efficiently work with your spouse and lawyers. This can also help reduce legal fees, which assists in financial recovery. We’ll start the conversation with a Checklist-divorce-2017 and go from there.
This is just an inch in the well of information and assistance we are able to offer. We’ll be writing again soon on dividing assets and dealing with debts. If you think we can help, be sure to contact us in the early stages of potential separation or divorce.]]>

How healthy will you be in your golden years? Long Term Care Insurance may be the solution.

Do you and your loved ones have enough funds to last through the golden years? Will you be financially secure if you outlive your savings? How will you cover the costs in the event that you require care? Issues such as these should be taken into consideration so that you are financially prepared for the future. Careful planning helps with peace of mind without having to place a burden on family and friends down the road. According to the chart below, the average cost of Long Term Care (LTC) in Canada is $61,500. These ranges cover the cost of care for couples at different income levels. The starting income level is $22,394 (very low) and the highest income level is $184,500 (three times average).  Average is $61,500. Source: N. Fernandes and B. Spencer, “The Private Cost of Long-Term Care in Canada: Where You Live Matters,” Canadian Journal on Aging 29 (3), 2010.

ProvinceRange of LTC costs for married seniors who are both in care
Alberta$16,548 to $24,021
B.C$16,864 to $36,500
Manitoba$21,682 to $50,882
New Brunswick$18,756 to $51,100
Newfoundland$19,394 to $43,297
Nova Scotia$15,906 to $57,670
Ontario$19,201 to $28,541
P.E.I$19,922 to $47,450
Quebec$17,882 to $24,314
Saskatchewan$20,246 to $43,848

When planning for your retirement, you have to keep in mind that you may need to cover the cost of care. These costs can be due to an illness, accident or diminished physical or mental capacity. Your investments and retirement savings may not be enough to cover these expenses. Activities of Daily Living (ADLs) is a term used to refer to people’s daily activities. Think of the activities you do to get your day started:

  1. Climb out of bed
  2. Use the bathroom
  3. Take a shower
  4. Get dressed
  5. Brush your hair
  6. Have breakfast

If you are unable to perform two out of the six activities and own Long-Term Care insurance, you could qualify to receive benefits. Long Term Care benefits provide an additional source of income that can help when you need it the most.  Long Term Care is a tax-free monthly benefit to help supplement your savings, provincial and private health insurance coverage. Eligibility for Long Term Care does not depend on admission to a care facility nor do you have to obtain any receipts for the care received. You have the freedom to use your benefit the way you see fit. Contact YourStyle Financial if you would like assistance with planning your retirement for you or a loved one and to discuss if Long Term Care coverage is right for you.

So you’re getting married?

You’ve found “the one” and have decided you will spend the rest of your lives together. You may have talked about growing your family, a new house and other plans for the future but have you thought about how you will achieve those goals? Marriage is a partnership and you need to know how you can achieve those goals together. Discussing your finances may not be a conversation that you want to have but it is necessary to avoid issues that may arise later. Debt, for example is one of the most important things a couple should discuss. Do you or your partner have any outstanding debt? If yes, does your partner know about it? Are you aware of each other’s income? Whatever the case may be, you need to communicate with each other and be open about your finances. A recent BMO survey shows that most married Canadians wish they had discussed their financial matters with each other before walking down the aisle. While 98% of Canadians agree they should be on the same page as their spouses, when it comes to finances, most of them aren’t! A whopping 40% of these couples say they have different investing styles from their partners. It’s not surprising then, that more than half of Canadian married couples have financial regrets, with 62% saying they wish they had discussed their financial plans and pasts before getting married. Use our Marriage Preparation Checklist to discuss with your partner to ensure your plans for wedded bliss include financial matters. For help with your financial planning, give us a call.

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