Author Topic: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?  (Read 49232 times)

Blissful Biker

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #250 on: May 12, 2017, 10:44:49 AM »
 
Still interested to Norbert-Gambit? 3x more trade + currency convertion to factor in! Look like you made the good choice!

Remember your money was already invested, you are just reallocating funds!

I rearranged my plan slightly to keep all the US equity in one account for simplicity, to flip over to VTI down the road when the dust settles.  The updated plan is attached.  In the future I plan to use the rebalancing portion of Hecklers spreadsheet as opposed to this one because Justin has locked most of the fields.  While it is a safe way to start, my creative genius is being squashed by protected fields. 

I made a few big buys this AM!  In each case I set the maximum at the ask price and set the time frame for several days.  Each order filled immediately and the whole process was pretty smooth.  Planning to buy more on Monday and hopefully the rest of the funds will make it over to IL next week and I can get those invested too.

I am not used to seeing the market fluctuations in real time and have lost $250 this AM.  I have to learn to ignore it.  I have a good plan.  Just relax.

It was interesting to watch the trades occurring for each fund at the site GreatLaker provided https://web.tmxmoney.com.  It gave me the courage to use the Ask price as I could see that many trades were happening at or below that value.

Le Barbu

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #251 on: May 12, 2017, 11:04:09 AM »
Still interested to Norbert-Gambit? 3x more trade + currency convertion to factor in! Look like you made the good choice!

Remember your money was already invested, you are just reallocating funds!

I rearranged my plan slightly to keep all the US equity in one account for simplicity, to flip over to VTI down the road when the dust settles.  The updated plan is attached.  In the future I plan to use the rebalancing portion of Hecklers spreadsheet as opposed to this one because Justin has locked most of the fields.  While it is a safe way to start, my creative genius is being squashed by protected fields. 

I made a few big buys this AM!  In each case I set the maximum at the ask price and set the time frame for several days.  Each order filled immediately and the whole process was pretty smooth.  Planning to buy more on Monday and hopefully the rest of the funds will make it over to IL next week and I can get those invested too.

I am not used to seeing the market fluctuations in real time and have lost $250 this AM.  I have to learn to ignore it.  I have a good plan.  Just relax.

It was interesting to watch the trades occurring for each fund at the site GreatLaker provided https://web.tmxmoney.com.  It gave me the courage to use the Ask price as I could see that many trades were happening at or below that value.

The price you set is just to avoid system anomalies. The final price should always be the "market" price as long as it's below the price you set. Keep up!

Heckler

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #252 on: May 13, 2017, 09:50:22 AM »
For anyone just starting on this journey, Moneygeek has a easy to understand set of videos

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=xMkzF3bawvY

Blissful Biker

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #253 on: May 14, 2017, 09:42:29 AM »
For anyone just starting on this journey, Moneygeek has a easy to understand set of videos

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=xMkzF3bawvY

Thanks.  I have watched the first few.  He does a good job at explaining concepts very simply.  I will work my way through them all.

With the money being 2/3 moved over to IL, I am starting to think about DRIP.  Do you use DRIPs or use the cash to rebalance?  VCN and VUN have quarterly distributions, ZAG has monthly distributions, XEC and XEC are every six months.

Thanks.  The kids are making me Mothers day breakfast, which is wonderful and getting less hazardous each year.

Heckler

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #254 on: May 14, 2017, 12:46:31 PM »
my bonds DRIP 1 or 2 shares per month
my equities DRIP 4-5 shares per quarter

for this reason, I choose to DRIP all holdings because I won't spend $9.95 on the fee to reinvest a few hundred $ at a time.  As it is, my accounts still accumulate one or two hundreds until I contribute a significant chunk and reinvest the cash portion of the dividends.

With a significantly larger portfolio, your dividends may be more feasible to be used to rebalance (and cost you $9.95) if you hold bonds and equities in the same account that majority of dividends are coming out of.

Heckler

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #255 on: May 14, 2017, 01:13:50 PM »
That $4k of XEF in his TFSA will drive you crazy, because it'll dividend not enough to reinvest.  If you haven't already purchased it, I would go 100% XEC in his TFSA and keep it simple.

Your three holdings of VCN are adding low value complexity - I would look for a way to eliminate one of them.

See attached an additional page from my spreadsheet, with a estimation of your dividends (VAB and VEE are shown instead of your ZAG and XEC).  Again, play around in excel and execute with knowledge.


Heckler

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #256 on: May 14, 2017, 01:24:04 PM »

It was interesting to watch the trades occurring for each fund at the site GreatLaker provided https://web.tmxmoney.com.  It gave me the courage to use the Ask price as I could see that many trades were happening at or below that value.

your BMO IL also give you access to detailed ask/bids.  Look under Quotes + / Level II button.   That brings up a window with Price, Size of order, Bid, Ask for the last ten transactions in real time.

Le Barbu

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #257 on: May 15, 2017, 07:47:50 AM »
Sorry to hack this thread, I just want to confirm an appropriate AA for my 70yo Dad. He's got a generous DB pension, do not need the investments money ever (sligth surplus every year)

TFSA would hold a mix of 30%ZCN/70%XAW
RRSP probably 100%VAB or 100%VSB?
No taxable account, paid off house, no debt, low COL etc (Mom have a bigger DB pension from gov!)
The final AA would be something like: 10%ZCN/20%XAW/70%VAB or 70%VSB
Easy to manage, low cost and appropriate with his risk tolerance.

The reason why I posted here is because this thread have been very efficient lately and I just want some quick second guesses. Please, keep it short!

RichMoose

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #258 on: May 15, 2017, 10:25:45 AM »
Sorry to hack this thread, I just want to confirm an appropriate AA for my 70yo Dad. He's got a generous DB pension, do not need the investments money ever (sligth surplus every year)

TFSA would hold a mix of 30%ZCN/70%XAW
RRSP probably 100%VAB or 100%VSB?
No taxable account, paid off house, no debt, low COL etc (Mom have a bigger DB pension from gov!)
The final AA would be something like: 10%ZCN/20%XAW/70%VAB or 70%VSB
Easy to manage, low cost and appropriate with his risk tolerance.

The reason why I posted here is because this thread have been very efficient lately and I just want some quick second guesses. Please, keep it short!

As you know Le Barbu, it's super cautious. The theoretical max drop of this portfolio is less than 15%. I would review his volatility tolerance with him using all available personal information and give him a realistic picture of how the portfolio would perform with higher equity allocation.

Does he actually need income from his portfolio given their DB pension income? It sounds like the pensions are enough, so why is he so worried about volatility?

I would move up the equity allocations to 50/50 at minimum. Theoretical max drop in the low 20% range.

Also, it may be worthwhile to throw corporates in the mix for his RRSP. I personally like ZIC.TO because it gives exposure to US corps at reasonable cost. However, a more efficient way of doing things is converting part of the account to a US dollar RRSP (if size is appropriate). Invest in VCIT for better yield and currency exposure, then keep the remaining in VSB.TO for Canadian exposure.

If he needs money during bad market conditions, he can always pull from the VSB.TO in RRSP.

Also, I would look at shifting from RRSP to TFSA or even non-reg account over time. Big RRSP + big pension = big tax bills

Goldielocks

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #259 on: May 15, 2017, 10:20:08 PM »
Holy fuck, 20k a year per kid???  That's nuts. Im pretty sure I went to UWO living at home for 4k.


The $16k to $19k per kid includes about $11k of residence and meal fees.

Le Barbu

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #260 on: May 16, 2017, 05:06:00 AM »
Sorry to hack this thread, I just want to confirm an appropriate AA for my 70yo Dad. He's got a generous DB pension, do not need the investments money ever (sligth surplus every year)

TFSA would hold a mix of 30%ZCN/70%XAW
RRSP probably 100%VAB or 100%VSB?
No taxable account, paid off house, no debt, low COL etc (Mom have a bigger DB pension from gov!)
The final AA would be something like: 10%ZCN/20%XAW/70%VAB or 70%VSB
Easy to manage, low cost and appropriate with his risk tolerance.

The reason why I posted here is because this thread have been very efficient lately and I just want some quick second guesses. Please, keep it short!

As you know Le Barbu, it's super cautious. The theoretical max drop of this portfolio is less than 15%. I would review his volatility tolerance with him using all available personal information and give him a realistic picture of how the portfolio would perform with higher equity allocation.

Does he actually need income from his portfolio given their DB pension income? It sounds like the pensions are enough, so why is he so worried about volatility?

I would move up the equity allocations to 50/50 at minimum. Theoretical max drop in the low 20% range.

Also, it may be worthwhile to throw corporates in the mix for his RRSP. I personally like ZIC.TO because it gives exposure to US corps at reasonable cost. However, a more efficient way of doing things is converting part of the account to a US dollar RRSP (if size is appropriate). Invest in VCIT for better yield and currency exposure, then keep the remaining in VSB.TO for Canadian exposure.

If he needs money during bad market conditions, he can always pull from the VSB.TO in RRSP.

Also, I would look at shifting from RRSP to TFSA or even non-reg account over time. Big RRSP + big pension = big tax bills

Thank you Mr Rich Moose, I am surprised you suggest a higher stock allocation. So many people of 70yo only hold GICs around here! My parents have so generous DB pensions, there is no way to pull RRSP without paying 29% taxes. This is why I put bonds in RRSP and stocks in TFSA. Size of RRSP does not worth NG to get USD. Priority here is simplicity and low fees. We may increase the stock allocation after the crash (market timing rules)!!!

I am helping him for 3 years now. We sold bbd-b.to and na.to (yep, only 2 individual stocks!) and replace with ZCN, ditched high MER funds and buy XAW and VAB, filled TFSA room etc. Just want to optimise a bit now. His AA is now 20/20/60 ZCN/XAW/VAB but XAW is into RRSP...

RichMoose

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #261 on: May 16, 2017, 09:00:54 AM »
Thank you Mr Rich Moose, I am surprised you suggest a higher stock allocation. So many people of 70yo only hold GICs around here! My parents have so generous DB pensions, there is no way to pull RRSP without paying 29% taxes. This is why I put bonds in RRSP and stocks in TFSA. Size of RRSP does not worth NG to get USD. Priority here is simplicity and low fees. We may increase the stock allocation after the crash (market timing rules)!!!

I am helping him for 3 years now. We sold bbd-b.to and na.to (yep, only 2 individual stocks!) and replace with ZCN, ditched high MER funds and buy XAW and VAB, filled TFSA room etc. Just want to optimise a bit now. His AA is now 20/20/60 ZCN/XAW/VAB but XAW is into RRSP...

A healthy 70 y/o can expect to live another 20 years, so one should invest with the same mindset.

Nothing wrong with stocks in RRSP as well. He will get taxed on the withdrawals there regardless of how much the account grows.

First priority is to properly educate him on risk and volatility tolerance. Then, given the factors (big DB pensions, longevity, spend rate, etc), let him decide on how much of a portfolio drawdown he is OK with. If his max is 15%, then 60-70% bonds is good. If it's 30%, than 70% stocks is better. His registered account values shouldn't determine his stock/bond allocation.

After that, distribute appropriately by account type. Stocks in TFSA first, then RRSP. Bonds in RRSP first, then TFSA as last resort. I have a guide posted on my blog for sorting investments for taxes by account type.

Blissful Biker

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #262 on: May 16, 2017, 06:56:26 PM »
My parents, who are also 70, cashed out a good DB pension and put it almost entirely in GICs because they felt nervous about the (very remote) possibility of the company going bankrupt.  They have a healthy amount of money and will be fine so I haven't pressed it with them.  But their conservatism sure has a heavy price.  They will not be keeping up with inflation. 

I am obviously a new DIY'er but I agree with Mr. Rich Moose's assessment.  70% bonds feels high when your parents have good DB pensions.

That $4k of XEF in his TFSA will drive you crazy, because it'll dividend not enough to reinvest.  If you haven't already purchased it, I would go 100% XEC in his TFSA and keep it simple.

Your three holdings of VCN are adding low value complexity - I would look for a way to eliminate one of them.

See attached an additional page from my spreadsheet, with a estimation of your dividends (VAB and VEE are shown instead of your ZAG and XEC).  Again, play around in excel and execute with knowledge.

Thanks Heckler.  I consolidated the VCN into one account for simplicity and to support the likely eventual flip to VTI.  You are the spreadsheet master!

Le Barbu

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #263 on: May 16, 2017, 07:32:01 PM »
People over 65 dont care about inflation, even if they're blessed with good health (wich is not exactly the case with my parents) they burry a friend, neighbor or relative every month or so. They value life, time and money quite differently than us...

I may consider recomend Dady 40% stocks, but it's still better than your parents! My MIL is even worst, widowed lately, fair DB pension, 100% GICs wich only 50% is tax sheltered! The other 50% return 0.5% net before inflation, so negative real return. There is no way to convince her to hold stocks!!!

GreatLaker

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #264 on: May 16, 2017, 07:43:43 PM »
Inflation was low in the 50s and 60s and everyone thought it would stay low forever. It was high in the 70s and 80s and everyone thought it would stay high forever. Since the early 90s we have low inflation and everyone thinks it will stay low forever. It's a great example of recency effect. While we don't anticipate inflation suddenly increasing, someone retiring at 60 could easily live for 30 years, enough time for an inflationary economic cycle.

Le Barbu

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #265 on: May 16, 2017, 08:38:44 PM »
I see inflation as a silent killer. Many are aware of stocks downsides of interests they pay but inflation is a vague concept for most. Reminds me the depreciation concept for a car. My neighbor lately told me (when talking about his mega-comute) he doesnt count depreciation. Only gas, tires and brakes! He said "The car will worth 0$ at the end anyway, so I do not consider this" WTF? This is THE reason why you HAVE to consider this!

Why does old people are so prompt at reminding us the price of a Coke in 1953 but do not realise inflation only did the job of not being able to buy a bottle for 5 penny anymore?
« Last Edit: May 16, 2017, 08:41:37 PM by Le Barbu »

Blissful Biker

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #266 on: May 19, 2017, 08:10:48 AM »
Another account came across to IL so we are now 80% invested.  So far so good.

We are headed away for the long weekend to visit family but before I go I wanted to express my thanks to everyone who has coached and encouraged me through this DIY journey.  This is something I have been thinking about for a long time but wouldn't have had the courage to take the leap without you.

Special thanks to Heckler, GreatLaker, Le Barbu and Mr Rich Moose.  I will forever be indebted to you.  If you ever make it out to the Kootenays I would love to meet you, make you my famous lasagna, teach you yoga or show you the best trails.

I am also writing thank you cards to mail to Dan Bortolotti and Justin Bender.  Helping the DIY'er is not a lucrative business model and I want to show my appreciation.  Thinking of sending locally made chocolate but would they eat chocolate from a stranger?  PM me with your address and I'll send you guys chocolate - I am far less of a stranger to the group on this forum, and it is really good chocolate. 

I am feeling independent, in control of my own destiny and walking a little taller.  Excited about the DIY journey ahead and glad to know you guys are just a post away.

Thanks!

zazpowered

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #267 on: May 19, 2017, 11:15:06 AM »
Has anyone used WealthSimple before? If so, how is it?

Stasher

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #268 on: May 20, 2017, 11:11:10 AM »
Super happy for you @Blissful_Biker !!

Soooo....now that things are in cruise mode we can talk bikes !
To hijack the thread I sold my Giant Trance and listed my Giant Glory to combine my All-mountain and DH bike into one beauty. I'm headed to Calgary in a couple weeks to pick up my new Giant Reign Advanced1 from my friend. He is a BC Bike racer 29'er weirdo and the aggressive downhill characteristics for of the Reign didn't suit him. Hopefully I can come your way and ride in the future, my buddy built the trail Powerslave at Retallack and would be wicked to check that out.

RichMoose

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #269 on: May 20, 2017, 04:26:02 PM »
BB, you're very welcome. Sharing knowledge is what makes this community great!

I'm not sure if you've shared which corner of the Kootenays you're in, but Nelson & Creston are on our list of target vacation spots in the coming years. I'd love to share an ice cold local brew one day!

Heckler

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #270 on: May 20, 2017, 10:51:32 PM »
Stasher, is it a '16 or '17 RA1?   I've had both-  currently on the red one.  We love it!  For island riding, you might want to put on similar tires to the Trance (slightly smaller and lighter). That was the biggest difference I noticed demoing the '17 TA1 and the RA1.

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #271 on: May 23, 2017, 12:34:03 PM »
Stasher, is it a '16 or '17 RA1?   I've had both-  currently on the red one.  We love it!  For island riding, you might want to put on similar tires to the Trance (slightly smaller and lighter). That was the biggest difference I noticed demoing the '17 TA1 and the RA1.
Thread officially hijacked until Blissful_Biker returns LOL
It is the 2016 model and looking forward to going to get it very soon. Actually for tires I will do the upgrade I did on my Trance (only after the stock ones wear out) > Tubeless conversion with Schwalbe Magic Mary up front and Hans Dampf in rear.

Blissful Biker

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #272 on: May 28, 2017, 09:58:34 AM »
Back from a great road trip to visit family.  The kids were spoiled rotten, especially when I would leave them with grandpa during my morning runs.  I would return each day to find their pockets bulging with candy.  If we lived closer I would have to set down some tough rules, but since it is just a couple times a year I let them all enjoy their sweets with abandon.

When I was a youngster my Dad had me read "The Weathly Barber" and would draw me curves showing the power of compound interest and starting savings early.  It was impactful and I want to give the same gift to my kids.  So I took advantage of the trip to the city to buy the new "The Wealthy Barber Returns".  To make sure it was appropriate for the kids I read it first and am a bit disappointed.  The original was a story, like a novel  with a cast of characters that could capture the interest of a young mind.  The new book still uses simple language but is dry in comparison.  I think I'll have the kids read the original, even though it was pre-TFSAs, the basic tenants of good financial management are there.

The $120K in RESPs made it across to IL.  I was thinking 40% ZAG / 60% XAW as recommended by Mr Rich Moose but in the end I went 40% ZAG, 20% ZCN, 40% XAW which matches the CCP balanced portfolio.  The kids will be attending Canadian schools so I figured it would be good to dial down the currency risk.  And balancing once a year between three funds wont create high trading fees. 

Within my husbands taxable account I opened the HISA (AAT770) and now have $2200 as the official start of savings for a vehicle.  Yesterday was a nice hot day and I came to realise the AC in our existing vehicle is broken, again.  Hmm.  fix?  or just drive with the windows down this summer?  We never had AC in vehicles growing up and did just fine.  My husband is travelling.  I'll wait until he returns and can weigh in on the decision.

Still waiting for one TFSA and the $40K from the scotia GRRSP to come across, and then everything will be set up.  Getting close!

Super happy for you @Blissful_Biker !!

Soooo....now that things are in cruise mode we can talk bikes !
To hijack the thread I sold my Giant Trance and listed my Giant Glory to combine my All-mountain and DH bike into one beauty. I'm headed to Calgary in a couple weeks to pick up my new Giant Reign Advanced1 from my friend. He is a BC Bike racer 29'er weirdo and the aggressive downhill characteristics for of the Reign didn't suit him. Hopefully I can come your way and ride in the future, my buddy built the trail Powerslave at Retallack and would be wicked to check that out.

Love talking about bikes!  I have a couple of friends on Giant Reigns that love them.  Sounds like a good choice for you.  We have a Trance in the basement as a back up bike for the boys.

Over the years I have been whittling down my quiver of bikes too, I now have only 3 - my Specialized Safire mtn bike that I ride a lot, a nice road bike that I ride very little, and an old touring bike on the trainer that I ride even less.  If I ever move back to a flatter landscape (which I don't plan too) I would get a groovy cruiser bike - painted with daiseys and a big basket.  Yeah baby.

Heckler

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #273 on: May 28, 2017, 09:32:54 PM »
could you please tell me more about AAT770? 

In BMOIL Quotes, it doesn't say anything, but price = $1.00, Return = 0 and there's no load.

Does it tell you the interest rate after you purchase it?

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #274 on: May 29, 2017, 04:53:16 AM »
Have am estimate done for the A/C issue, then take your decision based on this and vehicule value. I had 2 A/C issues on my 2 vehicules in the last 3 years and the cost was +/- 125$ in both cases. They purged the system, checked for leaks then recharge. Once, the clutch gap was to wide (a shim removal did the job) and on the other one, the gas level was just to low to build pressure. Work like new for 2 years now!

powersuitrecall

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #275 on: May 29, 2017, 05:20:32 AM »
Have am estimate done for the A/C issue, then take your decision based on this and vehicule value. I had 2 A/C issues on my 2 vehicules in the last 3 years and the cost was +/- 125$ in both cases. They purged the system, checked for leaks then recharge. Once, the clutch gap was to wide (a shim removal did the job) and on the other one, the gas level was just to low to build pressure. Work like new for 2 years now!

Agreed!  Having a mechanic you trust is helpful.  A dealer will use the opportunity to either fleece you or talk you into a new vehicle.

GreatLaker

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #276 on: May 29, 2017, 07:29:53 PM »
W00T! Congrats BB! Setting up a portfolio takes a lot of analysis and thought. Once it is done you just need to watch it grow while you do other things... well maybe rebalance once in a while. Definitely feels good.

I have been off doing other things like travelling, visiting family and putting the final pieces of my retirement plan into place. Early next year I should have everything done.

Oh yeah, my road bike is also an old steel beast. Rode a bunch of centuries on it, including several times up and down the Niagara Escarpment. An Italian job called a Pogliaghi. (I am still working on the pronunciation after a couple of decades. Something like Poy-ahh-ghi.)

And thanks for the offer of chocolate. You have made this forum a much friendlier place.

GreatLaker

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #277 on: May 29, 2017, 07:33:31 PM »
could you please tell me more about AAT770? 

In BMOIL Quotes, it doesn't say anything, but price = $1.00, Return = 0 and there's no load.

Does it tell you the interest rate after you purchase it?
It's a CDIC insured savings product, but bought like units of a mutual fund.  More details:
https://www1.bmoinvestorline.com/selfDirected/pdfs/BMO_CAD_HISA_EN.pdf
http://financialcrooks.com/how-buy-aat770-hisa-bmo-investorline/

Le Barbu

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #278 on: May 31, 2017, 08:06:34 AM »
Sorry BB to hack this thread again, but lately this is the best place to get sounds advices from fellow Canadian within MMM comunity! I posted this in the "real estate & landlording" section but only got 1 answer within 1 week!

I was just wondering if moving from current house worth:

We are a family of 4 including a 11 & 14yo. kids. We are ourselves 45yo. and 5 years from FIRE (actually FI on a barebone budget).

Our house, built in 2007, have all the features we need and more. The street and neighborhood is quiet and friendly. Main concern, we are about 5km from most everything wich make the car habit easy to fall in...

We always talked about leaving someday to get closer to the older part of  town, closer to every services and entertainments. So, I watch the inscriptions in the desired sector for a while to get an idea of the real estate market. I found something that may worth...

It's a detached 2-1/2 storeys house, built in 1850 and well maintained. Asking price +/- the same as I would ask for mine, taxes are +/- the same also. It's a little bigger than our house (2,300 sq.ft. instead of 1,900sq.ft.) but doesnt feel that big (old houses are not always sets efficiently) but still more than enough for us. There is actually a tenant on the ground level floor and this place rent for 670$/month. A quick update could crank the rent of this place to 900$/month, wich is a 10k$ net/year! DW exclude this plan for now, she may be interested when kids leave home...another way to see it with the 4% rule is like we got a 250k$ sitting still and ready to work anytime! It makes us more financialy resilient automaticaly even if we do not rent.

This place is the epicentre of EVERYTHING in Town! A 20 minutes walk in any direction (1.5km radius) brings you anywhere you need to go! The street itself is QUIET & SAFE and the most beautyfull street of old down is 1 block away! It does not make us closer to work, 10km now and about the same then. Anyway, jobs are not in a place where you want to live (no services, close to highway, more like industrial area) so it's not an option. Anyway, we intend to FIRE within 5 years.

Main concerns are: is it to early to move and does old houses cost that more to maintain then new? Kids doesnt see the value of moving to get closer to every places they require us to go because of them (school, sports, etc) but we begin to feel like Uber drivers! Our actual house is cheap to maintain for now but some appealing features will depreciate or cost few thousands in the future anyway (i.e. pool)

FWIW, actual place worth 225$/living sq.ft. compared to 175$ for the other place. The lot is about 50% smaller but still close to 4,000sq.ft. This area is the most dense of our city with 40 units/acre.

The place have been improved in many aspects, including insulation back in 2011. The seller face the "sunk fund loss" because the real estate market cannot justify more for a home in this particular area. I assume that utilities (electricity + heating) will cost 2,200$/year instead of 1,900$ wich is no a big deal. Maintenance will certainly be more than actual house but the smaller lot is cheaper to maintain. Overall, we may face a 2,500$ annual increase (conservative) but, the future income offset this hands down!

So, what do you think?

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #279 on: May 31, 2017, 05:50:42 PM »
Tough choice Le Barbu. I can speak from experience that older houses are a lot more work. You never know how the upgrades were done and where corners were cut to save a few dollars. You may have to replace electrical, plumbing, HVAC systems, insulation, windows, sidings, etc. These can be very expensive.

I have another proposal. Stay where you are and increase your kids weekly allowance. But, for every drive they ask you to make they have to pay you a small amount ($5 maybe). My guess is they may choose to bike more often. ;)

I'm not sure what house prices are in your area, but in general they are quite reasonable in QC. What would your rent/purchase price ration be on the new house?

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #280 on: May 31, 2017, 06:30:35 PM »
Quebec is a pretty slow market right now, would you even be able to sell at the price you want?

Also, there is a lot of extra $$ in the Welcome tax, realtor %, probably the most money will be paying for the fees, as well as the move itself.

The other question is will you miss having a nice yard and space? Or is the new place much smaller outside?

(This is with no details, just guessing since you have Levis as a location, and you're talking about moving closer downtown.)

Most of your points are emotional/preferences, as much of the financial portion is equivalent in both places. Make yourself a nice chart with the 1x expenses, the monthly changes in cash-flow, and decide if the move will increase your happiness by the amount it will increase your costs in the budget!

(Rational robot shuts down)


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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #281 on: May 31, 2017, 08:28:18 PM »
Tough choice Le Barbu. I can speak from experience that older houses are a lot more work. You never know how the upgrades were done and where corners were cut to save a few dollars. You may have to replace electrical, plumbing, HVAC systems, insulation, windows, sidings, etc. These can be very expensive.

I have another proposal. Stay where you are and increase your kids weekly allowance. But, for every drive they ask you to make they have to pay you a small amount ($5 maybe). My guess is they may choose to bike more often. ;)

I'm not sure what house prices are in your area, but in general they are quite reasonable in QC. What would your rent/purchase price ration be on the new house?

You made good points here! When I talk about the "just to far to bike" location I am as guilty as my kids & DW but we usually combine errances. Our total km for work, hockey, vacations, ect. is about 18,000km/year so not a big deal, 70% less than our friends and relatives.

Comparing rent/buy ratio is not that easy here. Rent is a lot cheaper but the rent market does not offer the same product. You can rent luxury condos or basic appartments. Nothing else available...

I may stay here for another few years and then, sell and rent for more liberty?

Le Barbu

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #282 on: May 31, 2017, 08:45:10 PM »
Quebec is a pretty slow market right now, would you even be able to sell at the price you want?

Also, there is a lot of extra $$ in the Welcome tax, realtor %, probably the most money will be paying for the fees, as well as the move itself.

The other question is will you miss having a nice yard and space? Or is the new place much smaller outside?

(This is with no details, just guessing since you have Levis as a location, and you're talking about moving closer downtown.)

Most of your points are emotional/preferences, as much of the financial portion is equivalent in both places. Make yourself a nice chart with the 1x expenses, the monthly changes in cash-flow, and decide if the move will increase your happiness by the amount it will increase your costs in the budget!

(Rational robot shuts down)

Slow market apply to me AND the seller. Welcome tax, realtor etc. may summs very fast! Smaller yard 4,000 instead of 7,500sq.ft. but honestly, we use street and public spaces more than our Yard wich provide more work than fun. Probably not ready yet but I will track the market down the road to be aware when a real opportunity shows up!

Very helpfull to read you and Rich Moose, Thank you!

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #283 on: May 31, 2017, 09:36:53 PM »
could you please tell me more about AAT770? 

In BMOIL Quotes, it doesn't say anything, but price = $1.00, Return = 0 and there's no load.

Does it tell you the interest rate after you purchase it?

In Investorline go to Trading > Fixed Income > High Interest Savings Offerings.  You will see:

High Interest Savings Accounts   Rate   Price   Initial purchase   Subsequent purchase   CDIC eligible
AAT770   BMO CAD HIGH INTEREST SAVINGS   0.75%   1.00 CAD   1,000 C   50 C   Yes
AAT780   BMO USD HIGH INTEREST SAVINGS   0.50%   1.00 USD   1,000 U   50 U   No

So AAT770 has a minimum initial purchase of $1,000 and provides an interest rate of 0.75%.  Not a bad deal.  But from the time you make the request to move money from cash into HISA it takes 48 hours to process, which seems a bit strange.

W00T! Congrats BB! Setting up a portfolio takes a lot of analysis and thought. Once it is done you just need to watch it grow while you do other things... well maybe rebalance once in a while. Definitely feels good.

I have been off doing other things like travelling, visiting family and putting the final pieces of my retirement plan into place. Early next year I should have everything done.

Oh yeah, my road bike is also an old steel beast. Rode a bunch of centuries on it, including several times up and down the Niagara Escarpment. An Italian job called a Pogliaghi. (I am still working on the pronunciation after a couple of decades. Something like Poy-ahh-ghi.)

And thanks for the offer of chocolate. You have made this forum a much friendlier place.

A vintage Italian road bike - that is a treasure.  I hadn't heard of Pogliaghi and looked them up.  You are riding a beautiful piece of history.  If you ever stop riding it, which I hope you don't, it deserves to be showcased on the wall.  If money was no object I would have a Pinarello.  Nobody makes road bikes better than the Italians. 

Thanks for sharing your address.  The kids helped me pick out some tasty locally made chocolates for you and I'll drop them in the post tomorrow.  Heckler, Le Barbu, Mr Rich Moose - don't miss out.

I mentioned you guys and this forum in my thank you cards to Dan Bortolotti and Justin Bender.  I would have never gotten this far without you.  (don't tell my kids I said "gotten")

Le Barbu - It sounds like you are excited about the potential purchase.  You have been talking for years about moving closer to the old part of town.  You say the area is beautiful and you would be right in the center of places and activities you love.  With the rental suite it can make good sense financially too.  Sounds like a winner to me.  Of course we need to act responsibly, but that aside, what would make you happy?  What would put extra spring in your step?  In my experience kids resist change but are actually very resilient.  They would quickly learn to love the new place if that is what you choose.

My boss retires at the end of this week and I am stepping into the role.  Sheryl Sandberg would encourage me to "Lean In" to my career but really, I just want to enjoy my family and ride my bike.  But I can see that the team needs me, and I will do my best.  I am going to try to stay part time, but if I need to move up to full time that just means I can retire sooner. 

The black bears got into my garden beds today, ate the kale and beans and crushed the tomatoes.  I am going to replant this weekend, because I am stubborn.

 

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #284 on: June 01, 2017, 08:57:27 AM »
@Le Barbu just make sure you haven't been watching too may episodes of Rental Property with Scott McGilvery lol
As mentioned I would seriously check out the wiring, plumbing, HVAC etc... old houses scare me.

@Blissful_Biker As your RE plans become clearer the choices at work should as well, hopefully. As for the bears , hope they were black bears and not Grizzlies. That right there is the reason I prefer VanIsle over the mainland and hiking there...big ole Grizz

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #285 on: June 01, 2017, 11:24:36 AM »
@Le Barbu just make sure you haven't been watching too may episodes of Rental Property with Scott McGilvery lol
As mentioned I would seriously check out the wiring, plumbing, HVAC etc... old houses scare me.

Loled at your comment!

I may have watched almost all of the seasons including the vacation edition and the last one where he built that gigaMcmansion for his family. That was to much for me, a total turn off! This guy was once a badass but now, he caugth into the spendypants trap where nothing make sense anymore (99% of his spending is pure waste). His numbers never make sense but he still does great jobs!

I am not that interested in being a landlord. It's more like a back up plan wich can be used if money is needed or a place to live for my growing sons (let say in their early 20s) or one of my parents (if one of them die). This particular area have not so many real estate options: luxury condos, entry level appartments and duplex/triplex are the most commons.

Comments from Rich Moose and Canadian Ben already turned me off a bit! I may wait another few years but look at listing from time to time...

My goal would be to get my property below 20% of my total assets someday, actualy just over 25%

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #286 on: June 01, 2017, 10:26:19 PM »
Quote from: Le Barbu

I am not that interested in being a landlord. It's more like a back up plan wich can be used if money is needed or a place to live for my growing sons (let say in their early 20s) or one of my parents (if one of them die). This particular area have not so many real estate options: luxury condos, entry level appartments and duplex/triplex are the most commons.

Comments from Rich Moose and Canadian Ben already turned me off a bit! I may wait another few years but look at listing from time to time...

My goal would be to get my property below 20% of my total assets someday, actualy just over 25%

Another option would be to buy a bare lot, teardown house, or "good bones" place at lot value only in your desired neighbourhood. Then you could build new, or strip an old place to the framing and do a complete restoration.

Le Barbu

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #287 on: June 02, 2017, 04:42:08 AM »
Quote from: Le Barbu

I am not that interested in being a landlord. It's more like a back up plan wich can be used if money is needed or a place to live for my growing sons (let say in their early 20s) or one of my parents (if one of them die). This particular area have not so many real estate options: luxury condos, entry level appartments and duplex/triplex are the most commons.

Comments from Rich Moose and Canadian Ben already turned me off a bit! I may wait another few years but look at listing from time to time...

My goal would be to get my property below 20% of my total assets someday, actualy just over 25%

Another option would be to buy a bare lot, teardown house, or "good bones" place at lot value only in your desired neighbourhood. Then you could build new, or strip an old place to the framing and do a complete restoration.

Good idea! But I would definetly wait another 3-5 years to do that. That kind of opportunity happen now and then in the area and being ready and patient is the key. New building are nice but also bring a bunch of surprises. The financials got to make sense to!

Meanwhile, I deleveraged myself this week, sold for 10k$ of ZCN and reimburse HELOC-1 (segment @ 3.2%) with the proceed. The Smith manœuvre assets now worth 155k$ and HELOC-2 (segment @ 2.05%) is down to 140k$. 2017 is a low income year for me so I will pay low taxes on capital gain.

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #288 on: June 02, 2017, 07:09:17 AM »
Your Heloc at 2% is insanely low.

I've been looking recently, and I haven't found anyone offering better than prime+.5%

Do you have a special deal, or just a long term variable rate (in the past I seem to remember it being prime -1%)

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #289 on: June 02, 2017, 08:30:50 AM »
Your Heloc at 2% is insanely low.

I've been looking recently, and I haven't found anyone offering better than prime+.5%

Do you have a special deal, or just a long term variable rate (in the past I seem to remember it being prime -1%)

The readvancable part of my HELOC is @ prime + 0.5 (3.2% now)

The 2.05% is indeed a variable/5 years signed back in november 2015. It's a C + I with on a 30 years amortization. I usualy make the monthly payments with the readvancable segment of the HELOC for convenience. Today, I wouldnt get better than +/- 2.5% for the same set up.

I also got a 2.24% fix on the remaining mortgage balance (40k$) for 3 years 6 months ago...

My credit score is pristine, NW over 1M$ and my "business volume" with RBC/RBC DI is around 1.1M$, I suppose all of this help getting good deals?!

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #290 on: June 02, 2017, 09:13:54 AM »
My credit score is pristine, NW over 1M$ and my "business volume" with RBC/RBC DI is around 1.1M$, I suppose all of this help getting good deals?!

I'm sitting in the same boat now but after quitting work last month I know wonder how I will ever get access to cash again in my life if I ever need it. That being said before I FIRE'd I opened another $30k line of credit just to have extra in case who know what.

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #291 on: June 02, 2017, 09:16:44 AM »
Le Barbu - Very nice.

Looking forwards to being a large fish so that people treat me better like you :D.

Ha, as if. Questrade will hold all my investments. Atleast we get good deals for being in the military with BMO. Still not enough to balance out not being millionaire rich, but still better than nothing!

Stasher - Do you have a HELOC? most people I see recommend it even for those who don't want to borrow to invest just to sit unused in order to avoid that problem.

The other portion I see is people showing either High cash checking accounts, or paying everything in one installment. That usually gets the lender to ignore the fact you are no longer getting a paycheck, and are living on investments.
« Last Edit: June 02, 2017, 09:19:56 AM by Canadian Ben »

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #292 on: June 02, 2017, 09:51:17 AM »
We have $50K line of credit secured by our home equity with a rate of 3%.  We negotiated hard to get a good mortgage rate of 2.2% years ago but didn't press too hard on the LOC because we normally keep the balance at zero.  The LOC is our emergency fund.  We are debt averse but to me it makes more sense to maintain access to an LOC than build an emergency fund outside our normal investments.

Good luck Canadian Ben.  And remember that the rates are negotiable regardless of your assets. 

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #293 on: June 02, 2017, 10:05:06 AM »
Le Barbu - Very nice.

Looking forwards to being a large fish so that people treat me better like you :D.

Ha, as if. Questrade will hold all my investments. Atleast we get good deals for being in the military with BMO. Still not enough to balance out not being millionaire rich, but still better than nothing!

Stasher - Do you have a HELOC? most people I see recommend it even for those who don't want to borrow to invest just to sit unused in order to avoid that problem.

The other portion I see is people showing either High cash checking accounts, or paying everything in one installment. That usually gets the lender to ignore the fact you are no longer getting a paycheck, and are living on investments.

What hold you to combine all of your finances with BMO/BMOIL??? Questrade is a good option if you trade a lot, but I usualy trade 5x/year over 6 accounts, I would not split my finances through 2-3 places to save 49$/year! The big banks consider your total volume weather it's investments or debt, they really dont care! Now, I got over 900k$ invested, 40k$ mortgage, 140k$ HELOC used for SM (40k$ available), 50k$ LOC (not used) and 2 CC (Visa and MC with RBC) for a total "volume" of 1.1M$

As soon as you get over 250k$ then 500k$, your status gets better. Another thing you mentioned, the big checking account balance...well, the bank dont give a shit about this. Your assets and NW are important but the "link" they got is more important (mortgaged home is better than mortgage free, big LOC/HELOC are good, used or not, etc) with the credit cards, take 1-2 big one (a lot bigger than what you really need) and set automatic balance every month. Aim to use no more than 25-40% of the limit on average. They want you to get big tools and show how you can have self control with.

Open many accounts with your bank. A checking, USD, HISA, TFSA, RRSP etc. Then you get no more monthly fees! Counter intuitive I know, and this is why many suck with money...

Hope this help!

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #294 on: June 02, 2017, 10:12:34 AM »
@Le Barbu  ... sounds like the goals I am trying to achieve at Scotia Bank by having all my eggs there including my investments via iTrade.

@Canadian Ben , I do have a small HELOC on my rental property , Scotia calls it a "step" mortgage. I didn't do one on my home as when I renewed it I just went with the simple crazy low new % rate and a simple signature. If I wanted a HELOC I had to go through all the paperwork all over again as it would have been a new mtg vs a renewal. I like simplicity too much.

I think I have $100,000 in credit line access right now and about $80,000 in credit cards. I never touch the credit lines but use the cards all the time and pay them in full each month (I never touch my debit card or cash to max reward points) Yes I have all that emergency cash and still have too much in savings but that was my living allowance now in FIRE.

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #295 on: June 02, 2017, 10:25:49 AM »
@Stasher - 100k in Credit, I think you'll be fine in getting access to cash!

@Le barbu - Sadly I'm not even in the 250k range yet, but I really should see if what they offer for BMO investing if I offer to bring all the different services over (I'm using TD E-series right now, and I'm just above the range where switching to direct investments is more effective than the .3 MER and free buy/sell). Mortgage-Heloc-RRSP-TFSA-Registered, probably good bargaining chips. I usually want to rip out the eyes of the "financial advisor" or the "investment planner" at the bank, as he is obviously looking for the lowest hanging fruit, and has very little training.

-Advisor: Oh well have some great mutual funds at only 2% MER, and if you are looking for safe investments, we have some products that guarantee 2-3% if you are willing to only pull out the money after 5 years.
-Me 2-3%, per year? so 10-15%?
-Advisor: No, 2-3% total after 5 years.
-Me.... Claws out my own eyes.

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #296 on: June 02, 2017, 10:45:04 AM »
@ Canadian Ben - Your smaller than 250k$ "volume" is another reason why You should group everything! I suppose that BMOIL gives acces to some no-load fees mutual funds for small trades. I do this regularly with RBCDI buying TD and RBC mutual index funds @ 0.5-0.7% MER for convenience (low balance, small impact).

Your best friend now is your federal paycheck slip! Open big LOC and keep less than 1k$ in checking account! Shovel every dollar toward investments, pedal to the metal as we say!

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #297 on: June 02, 2017, 11:29:32 AM »
Right now I'm gaming the system for Credit card rewards / account rewards, and I keep moving my money around for the welcome/opening bonuses.

BMO already gives free banking for military, and TD E-series that I have are .3, so right now I'm on the edge of starting to buy ETFs, just have to REMAIN IN MY DAMN CITY FOR LONGER THAN TWO CONSECUTIVE WEEKS. And then I'll move over my accounts to ETFs. I'm also being posted to Ottawa, so free cash'll be necessary with the house market so slow in Quebec, it's unlikely that I will have sold my Qc house before buying my Ott house. grumble grumble, two down payments stuck in houses grumble grumble.

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #298 on: June 02, 2017, 11:43:54 AM »
Right now I'm gaming the system for Credit card rewards / account rewards, and I keep moving my money around for the welcome/opening bonuses.

BMO already gives free banking for military, and TD E-series that I have are .3, so right now I'm on the edge of starting to buy ETFs, just have to REMAIN IN MY DAMN CITY FOR LONGER THAN TWO CONSECUTIVE WEEKS. And then I'll move over my accounts to ETFs. I'm also being posted to Ottawa, so free cash'll be necessary with the house market so slow in Quebec, it's unlikely that I will have sold my Qc house before buying my Ott house. grumble grumble, two down payments stuck in houses grumble grumble.

Haha! Is there now way to rent something nice in the Ottawa area?

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Re: Should I use a Canadian robo-advisor? If so, which one?
« Reply #299 on: June 02, 2017, 11:51:09 AM »
Military pays for all buying/Selling extras (lawyer,welcome tax, fees); comparable rents/buys are almost 2x as much to rent as to buy (including repairs, maintenance, taxes). It's actually quite easy to buy in the outskirts of Ottawa, however my investments will be stuck in the two houses until Qc sells and frees up the 75k I have in it (my pre-mustache days, when I thought that paying down the mortgage was a great idea!) - Good idea, just not as good as investing.

As a guide, the outskirts of Ottawa are about 50-75k more than Quebec suburbs for the same type of house. (my house 220k in Qc, would probably be close to 300k) So moving from a bungalow to a row house, and remaining in the same price range.