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Carol Plaisier's Top Tax Tips for Canadians, 2017

If you didn’t make any New Year resolutions regarding money, here are some financial tips for 2017:

Pay off high interest debt. Credit card and some loan interest rates can be very high - if you cannot pay in full within three - six months, consider refinancing your mortgage if possible.

Maximize your Tax Free Savings account contribution, or deposit as much as you are able.

Make your 2017 RRSP contribution, hopefully, 2016 is already done. If not, consider a catch up RRSP loan or line of credit.

Set up monthly contributions to your RRSP or TFSA accounts if not maximized. You will take advantage of dollar cost averaging and smaller monthly withdrawals will not impact you as much as trying to make one large contribution annually.

Review your insurance policies – life, disability, critical illness, long term care and obtain professional advice if you have had any major changes in your life – new child or grand-child, marriage, job promotion to name a few. Even if have not had a major life event, a current needs analysis is a good idea if you obtained the policies a number of years ago.

Review your will and ensure it clearly sets out your current wishes. Review POA and Representation agreement to ensure all information is accurate.

If you are married or with a partner, attend financial reviews together at least once annually, and more as necessary.

Know where all financial information is located – insurance policies, will, POA, where is the safety deposit box and the key, what institutions hold your investments?

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