March 2011

Is your accountant doing a good job?

Posted by on March 31, 2011 in Investment Information

Among all the major advisors (financial people, lawyers, bankers), accountants get the easiest ride. The answer is pretty simple: they are the only advisors who consistently can give you cash which you are not borrowing in the form of a tax return. But are all accountants created equal? How do you differentiate between a good [...]

Can you lose your home as a victim of real estate fraud?

Posted by on March 29, 2011 in Real Estate

Gail Vaz-Oxlade recently answered a series of questions and raised the issue of whether registering a mortgage against your home as security for a line of credit is sufficient protection against real estate fraud. She briefly alluded to the case law on real estate fraud and how registering a line of credit against your home [...]

Is it time to end all tax deductions and tax credits?

Posted by on March 22, 2011 in Taxes

The Canadian federal budget is released today at approximately the same time people have to start thinking about taxes. While there is much speculation on what new tax measures will be introduced, there’s been a corresponding ground swell of commentators questioning the utility of tax deductions and tax credits (a tax credit is typically a [...]

What your home insurance may not cover

Posted by on March 17, 2011 in insurance

Spring brings the promise of longer days, the end of school and summer vacation. Unfortunately, a lot of snow has to melt and rain to fall before we get there.  All this water creates a lot of problems for home-owners. While fire damage is always a clear and present danger, it is water damage which [...]

Do self-help books actually help?

Posted by on March 15, 2011 in General Information

Safest of thoughts and best wishes to all in Japan and anyone affected by the earthquake. Yahoo! Finance recently ran an article on why most self-help books “stink” based upon research conducted by Christine B. Whelan (the long-form abstract can be found here).  As Whelan’s research indicates, self-help books have exploded accounting for 1.1 percent [...]

The problem with buying cheap term life insurance

Posted by on March 10, 2011 in insurance

Term life insurance, as the name implies, is a form of insurance which offer coverage for a set period of time. The attractiveness of term life insurance is primarily its reasonable pricing. Since payout is uncertain, unlike whole/permanent life insurance, the probability of payout is lower and, as such, prices have been adjusted accordingly by [...]

What is the barbell investing strategy?

Posted by on March 8, 2011 in Investment Strategy

We live in a world marked by a great deal of volatility and uncertainty. Record high corporate profits sit side by side with predictions of an economic downturn upon the end of quantitative easing (fancy spin for printing money until we drop) in June of this year.  Some would argue, most notably Nassim Nicholas Taleb, [...]