Living Richer

Living Richer Wealth Management

We all want to live a richer and more fulfilled life, and with smart financial planning, it’s possible. That’s what the Living Richer podcast is all about – helping you to align your means with the things that mean most to you, so that you can enjoy your life today, while planning for tomorrow. Living Richer is Hosted by Mark Shimkovitz, Vice President at Raymond James Ltd. and head of the Living Richer Wealth Management team. Mark's been a financial advisor for over 25 years and takes a life-goals financial planning approach. Living Richer will give you the knowledge, tools and strategies to clarify your goals and priorities, invest wisely and avoid common mistakes. Mark will help you understand how to develop and implement a personalized financial plan that will put you on the right track and keep you moving toward your goals through life’s many transitions. So whether you are just starting out on your financial journey, or well on your way, Living Richer will have something to offer you. Information in this podcast is from sources believed to be reliable; however, we cannot represent that it is accurate or complete. It is provided as a general source of information and should not be considered personal investment advice or a solicitation to buy or sell securities. Raymond James advisors are not tax advisors and we recommend that clients seek independent advice from a professional advisor on tax-related matters. The views are those of Mark Shimkovitz, and not necessarily those of Raymond James Ltd. Investors considering any investment should consult with their investment advisor to ensure that it is suitable for the investor’s circumstances and risk tolerance before making any investment decision. Securities-related products and services are offered through Raymond James Ltd., member - Canadian Investor Protection Fund. Insurance products and services are offered through Raymond James Financial Planning Ltd., which is not a member - Canadian Investor Protection Fund. read less
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Episodes

Ep. 17 Interview w/ Jeanette Bock, Elder Care Consultant: Planning for Your (or your parents')Later Years
Jul 13 2023
Ep. 17 Interview w/ Jeanette Bock, Elder Care Consultant: Planning for Your (or your parents')Later Years
When planning for retirement, most people don’t focus on health concerns, yet the reality is that seven out of 10 people over 65 will eventually need long-term care.  This can have a major impact not only for an individual but also for the entire family. In this podcast, I interview elder care consultant Jeanette Bock. Jeanette works with seniors and families to guide them through the many life choices they face as they age. During our discussion, Janette shared her top planning tips to ensure you or an aging loved one can make informed decisions to ease life transitions. We discuss how best to handle a later in life transition to assisted living, aging in place, or when an unexpected crisis occurs. We also talk about the important things you need to consider when planning for retirement years, including:Prioritizing health considerations since this will have the greatest impact on your lifestyle, housing and finances. Starting the conversation with your loved ones about your wishes. If complicated family dynamics are involved or you’re not comfortable bringing up the topic, the importance of involving a third party to facilitate the discussion.Making the right housing choice, whether it be aging in place, downsizing or, if your health is declining, an assisted living facility Making sure you have a Power of Attorney in place, not just for property but also for personal care. This will ensure your healthcare wishes are met.  LinksOntario Ministry of Long-Term CareTeepa Snow's Positive Approach To CareAlzheimer Society of TorontoMcMaster Optimal Aging PortalAdvance Care Planning Workbook
Ep. 16 Understanding Wills
Dec 7 2021
Ep. 16 Understanding Wills
1. Why a Will is the cornerstone of a good estate plan.Get to dictate where assets go, guardian of children, who administers estateWithout a Will, the law decides who gets assets and it’s not necessarily all to a spouseStreamlines estate administration and can help to reduce taxes/fees on death2. What makes for a good Will?Revokes previous WillsNames executor and alternateDisposes of household itemsGiftsResidue – no missing piecesAdministrative provisions – a few pages at leastSigned and witnessed3.  Beyond the Will, what should someone pay attention to when creating or updating their estate plan?Assets, family situation, contractual or support obligations    Executor and an eye to the administration of the estate4.  What should someone consider when naming an executor?Should be ideally in province, definitely in CanadaFinancially savvy, time, ageRelationship with beneficiaries, potential for conflictConsider professional executor5. What are some of the main issues that can complicate estate planning and administrationPoor Wills, Will challenges (undue influence)Joint assets – who actually owns them?Conflict – siblings; blended familiesCottageAccusations against executor6. What is probate and how can it be avoided or minimized?Probate is a court process to get court’s stamp of approval on the WillProbate fees approx.. 1.5% of the estate valuesPlanning techniques: assets joint with spouse, beneficiary designations, gifting during lifeEach of the above has complications and pitfalls so important to be done holisticall7.  Why a trust can be an important part of an estate plan.Trusts – give someone benefit of money, but trustee controlsTerms can be very flexible – from discretionary to set; can end at a certain age or continue, can have one or more beneficiariesGenerally used to protect vulnerable beneficiaries – minors, disabled (ODSP), spendthrift, vulnerable spouseCan sometimes be used to provide some income splitting, but less so now with changes to trust taxationNeed a trustee who knows what they are doing, trustworthy, time, objective
Ep. 12 Are You Too Young for Insurance?
Apr 16 2021
Ep. 12 Are You Too Young for Insurance?
In this first of a three part mini-series, I interview estate planning advisor Greg Jizmejian to discuss the insurance needs of younger individuals and families.Broadly speaking, those between 25 - 40 years old. We discuss what risks are most prevalent and what types of insurance should be considered.Unlike other products, insurance is something you buy when you don’t need it. It's like a redundancy plan. It provides you with the comfort of knowing that it will be there as a backstop if your main plan falls apart. For example, although many people believe that the biggest reason for home foreclosure is the loss of a job; it’s actually not, it’s disability. In addition to long term disability insurance, we also look at critical illness insurance options and how they compare.It's important to understand the distinctions between different types of long term disability because there are so many grey areas. We discuss why and how as an employee, your company’s group benefits plans would differ from the long term disability insurance you get on your own. Of particular interest to professionals is understanding what type is best suited for them.Greg goes on to compare critical illness insurance to long term disability insurance. What CI pays, when it pays, what you can use it for and also how Covid-19 impacts critical illness.Doing a proper needs analysis is key to determining the types and amounts of coverage that make sense for each individual. It should be customized. And the good news is, a needs analysis really doesn’t take a lot of time or effort to do. Contrary to popular belief, Greg discusses why a young person with no debt and no family might need to get life insurance. He uses his own daughter as an example. What some of the benefits are when buying insurance for children. How insurability can be impacted not just by health but also occupation and where you live or work. For those with mortgages, you’ve likely been introduced to the concept of mortgage insurance. Greg compares taking out insurance at the bank vs on your own. He discusses why he thinks that these types of insurance are not the best in most cases. Links Protecting All That Is Yours
Ep. 11 Understanding Registered Accounts
Mar 10 2021
Ep. 11 Understanding Registered Accounts
With so many different types of accounts and confusing acronyms, trying to navigate the maze of account options and create a strategy that makes sense for you can be overwhelming. In today’s show we’re going to put an end to that. For the most part, in Canada all accounts are divided into two categories -- registered or non-registered. The major difference is that government-registered plans and accounts let you grow your savings tax-sheltered. Non-registered investment accounts like cash accounts don’t. In this episode we’re going to focus in on the major types of registered accounts as opposed to non-registered. These will include different types of RRSPs and RRIF’s, Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA) and Registered Education Savings Plans (RESP).You’ll learn what these plans are, how they work and who they benefit. I’ll also let you in on some key benefits you may not be aware of and little-known tips on how to make them work even harder for you.Below are my four biggest takeaways from today’s podcast:In my opinion, the most ideal situation would be one in which an investor owns both registered and non-registered accounts. This allows you to max out your registered accounts - RRSP, TFSA and RESP and then if you still have funds left over, you can invest within a non-registered account.If you’re a young person with an entry-level salary it’s usually best to maximize your TFSA before contributing to an RRSP (except in a scenario where you have an employer-matching pension plan or group RRSP to take advantage of). Let the RRSP contribution room build up and then, when you start making more money and are in a higher tax-bracket, contribute to the RRSP. If the funds aren’t available, the money in a TFSA can be used for RRSP contributions. Once you have children, open an RESP as soon as possible to start collecting those RESP grants. The government is giving you free money. And who doesn’t like free money? And if you have more than one child, set up a family RESP with all kids as beneficiaries.Finally, be sure to designate a beneficiary for each of your registered accounts. RRSPs, TFSAs and RRIF’s can all rollover tax-free to a spouse or common-law partner.
Ep. 9 Money & Marriage
Jan 29 2021
Ep. 9 Money & Marriage
In today’s episode we cover a wide range of topics as they relate to how someone’s relationship with money can impact their relationships with others. When it comes to a friendship, differences in attitudes towards spending and saving may not be a deal breaker. But when those differences arise in a couple, they can be. Topics we look at include;Why people find it so difficult to talk about money.Why money is a leading cause for divorceTips on mistakes to avoidWhat you can do to ensure healthy conversations about moneyA major reason couples don’t talk about money has to do with the shame attached to it. Shame can come from;Financial mistakes made in the past.Carrying a lot of debtBig differences in incomeMoney plays such a big role in so many parts of our lives - where we live, trips we take, cars we drive, the jobs we take and the way we spend in general. The differences in how people view money can be a major stressor and far too often it boils down to a lack of communication. People talk about so many other things before talking about money. Couples need to make money conversations a priority and we provide a discussion guide to help. In the episode we use a real life case study of a couple in their early thirties we worked with. We delve into how their different upbringings resulted in friction in their relationship. The first step we took was getting them to talk about the concerns they had. We had them focus on priorities and life goals rather than finances and budgets. By focusing on shared priorities, it’s easier for each person to determine the areas they are willing to compromise on. It’s also important for both people in a relationship to know what the scope of their finances are. Clarity provides comfort. Tips to make the conversations easier;Don’t dive into a money talk right off the batStart with a broader conversation about goals, values and future plans. Talking openly about the type of lifestyle you want will help to ensure you’re both on the same page for the long term.Take a step back and commit to listening to your partner and finding a middle ground.Focus on one shared goal at time.Consider a money coach or financial advisor to help facilitate the conversation and clarify goals.Top takeawaysDon’t keep secrets.Don’t expect your partner to have same goalsAgree on shared goals and figure out how to reach them together. This takes the conversation away from dollars and towards something with a deeper meaning.Helpful ToolsA financial discussion guide for couples.  LINK
Ep. 8 Considering Divorce? What you should know.
Jan 13 2021
Ep. 8 Considering Divorce? What you should know.
Today we interview Rosanna Breitman. Rosanna is a divorce mediator and begins by telling us about the type of mediation she practices and how the holistic process she utilizes benefits the divorcing couples and more importantly how it benefits the children. Introducing Rosanna’s book entitled, The 7 Crucial Steps To Take Before Saying I Want A Divorce.If there is a risk that someone can be hurt or is concerned for their safety, they should not be having that talk with their spouse.The importance of talking to a therapist. Divorce is a grief process and there is a fundamental need for support. Support from a therapist is a constructive thing to do. A therapist can help you to avoid regrets. Although so many people are resistant, Rosanna recommends this to most clients. In the end they are grateful that they did it.Understand the different legal avenues that they can take. Mediation – A conflict resolution process. It may not be the best process for those who want to use it as a way to air grievances rather than fighting. Works for those who want to save time and money. People who are willing to make full financial disclosure. A mediator does not need to be a lawyer. Generally, a mediator does not give legal advice. Mediation is an unregulated profession. Collaborative Family Law – Each person has their own lawyer rather than having one mediator working with both parties. The philosophy is similar to mediation in that it is also an interests-based process rather than a rights-based process. The bargaining is based in the shadow of the law, so they are figuring out what’s in the best interest of the couples. You get more into the “why” behind what someone is asking for and you can focus more on what a couple can do to come up with an appropriate solution. Understand the legal process so you are clear on what steps you will encounter. Some of the financial issues that are likely to come up. People do not need to know everything about their finances and it will be dealt with in time, but not necessarily at the outset. Benefits of working with a financial advisor or CDFA to go through all the information they eventually will need. How common law and married couples differ in terms of financial obligations. Budgeting – Understanding the costs you will face. Most people will suffer financial challenges. Even at high income levels, the costs of running two households can be unrealistic.Preparing for the talk. Separate the person from the problem and that will allow people to focus on creating a solution. Once you’ve completed the talk, it’s important to know that this is an ongoing process. The partner on the receiving end of the talk may not expect it and will need some time to let it sink in. It’s like a grieving process and be prepared to give space and time for everything to play out. Resources:eBook: The Seven Crucial Steps to Take Before Saying I Want a DivorceWebsite: www.torontofamilylaw.comEmail - Rosannabreitman@gmail.com
Ep. 6 Debt Free In 4 (or 5) Easy Steps
Dec 27 2020
Ep. 6 Debt Free In 4 (or 5) Easy Steps
On average Canadians are indebted at 177 per cent of their disposable income—meaning that for every dollar of household after tax income, Canadians owe $1.77. This is just off its all-time high. By comparison, in 1990 that number was just 86 cents. In today's episode, we take you through 5 steps to follow, to finally regain control of your debt and start to steer yourself in the right direction.Mark starts by looking at debt in general. He compares good debt to bad debt and discussed why it’s never a good idea to have bad debt.If you follow the first four steps to get out of debt and stay that way, you can avoid the fifth step, which could have the most negative impact on your financial situation.Making debt repayment a priority in your monthly budget. Tips on how to find extra money in your budget. Apps to help find the best prices on necessities.Comparing two methods for paying down debt. The Snowball Method vs. the Avalanche Method. Which method can work the fastest. Which method will save more in interest. Which method has the highest likelihood of success.Don’t create more debt. This one is really important and one where a lot of people trip up.How to deal with your existing credit cards. Studies show that people spend 15% more when paying with credit, which is why getting rid of your cards could be a solution for you.Instead of declaring bankruptcy, why a Consumer Proposal might be a better solution.LinksDave Ramsey – Snowball methodDebt service ratio calculator