As part of Financial Literacy Month, FCAC has released a new video Tip Clip to encourage consumers to budget first.
FCAC releases new Tip Clip to encourage budgeting
OTTAWA, Nov. 21, 2012 /CNW/ - With the holiday season and the end of the
year just ahead, now is the time to make sure that you have a solid
grasp of your finances. As part of Financial Literacy Month, the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC) has released a new video Tip Clip to encourage consumers to budget first.
Before buying special gifts or making big-ticket purchases for the
household, FCAC has suggestions that can help consumers' finances stay
healthy through the holiday season—and after.
1. Make a budget and stick to it
Most people know how much money they make, but find it hard to keep
track of where their money is going or how much their debts cost them
every year. Taking some time now to plan your holiday spending can help
you avoid regretting your credit card bill in January.
FCAC's online Budget Calculator can help you create a budget that will show you how much money you can
spend on Christmas presents.
Having a budget also helps you see where you can cut expenses to have
more money available for what really matters to you throughout the
year, such as buying a house, saving for retirement or paying down
You will be able to save the tool and your budget information on your
computer so you can review and update your budget later.
2. Be smart with your credit card
Credit cards can be useful and convenient. But if you aren't careful
about how you use them, you can put yourself on a path to serious
financial trouble. You could build up debt that might take you years to
pay off or even damage your credit score.
FCAC's Tips to Use Your Credit Card Wisely lists steps you can follow, such as: avoid impulse buys, pay off your
full balance by the due date every month, don't take cash advances on a
credit card and stop using your card if the monthly balance is growing
until you get your finances under control.
If you cannot pay off your credit card balance in full by the due date,
you can reduce the interest you will have to pay. FCAC's Credit Card Payment Calculator compares three different payment options to pay off your credit card
balance, showing the impact on interest costs, total payments made and
the time it will take to pay off the balance.
3. Know the costs and conditions of prepaid cards before you buy them
Prepaid cards have become popular as an alternative way to pay for
purchases, or to give as gifts. While prepaid cards offer several
benefits, they have costs and conditions that you should be aware of.
FCAC's Prepaid Cards: 10 Things to Consider Before Buying tip sheet lists the things you should know before you buy one, such as the fees
that may apply, what happens if the card is lost or stolen and how you
can check the balance.
4. Check for new opportunities to save in the new year
By budgeting and using your credit cards wisely, you may find ways to save money. If so, consider opening a Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA) to help you
save to achieve your financial goals. A Registered Education Savings
Plan (RESP) can help you save for your children's education, or a
Registered Disability Savings Plan (RDSP) may also be an option.
A Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) can help you save for
retirement. Money you deposit in an RRSP can be deducted from your
taxable income on your next tax return, and you have up until the end
of February 2013 to make contributions that can be deducted from your
Also, take the opportunity to plan ahead. Check to see how much you can
contribute in the new year if you already have these savings programs.
5. Take some time to learn how to manage your money with confidence
FCAC offers free educational programs for consumers at different stages in their lives:
Your Financial Toolkit has been designed for adults to help them learn to manage their
Financial Basics is a teacher-led workshop that helps develop money management skills
for young adults between the ages of 18 and 29.
The City is a learning program for secondary school-age youth that teaches
financial skills that they can carry with them throughout their lives.
With educational materials and interactive tools, the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC) provides objective information about financial products and
services to help Canadians increase their financial knowledge and
confidence in managing their personal finances. FCAC informs consumers
about their rights and responsibilities when dealing with banks and federally regulated trust, loan and
insurance companies. FCAC also makes sure that federally regulated
financial institutions, payment card network operators and external
complaints bodies comply with legislation and industry commitments intended to protect consumers.
You can reach us through FCAC's Consumer Services Centre by calling
toll-free 1-866-461-3222 (TTY: 613-947-7771 or 1-866-914-6097) or by
visiting our website: itpaystoknow.gc.ca.
Follow @FCACan on Twitter
Subscribe to FCACan on YouTube
November is Financial Literacy Month (itpaystoknow.gc.ca/flm)
Like Financial Literacy Month in Canada on Facebook
Join Partnering to Turn Financial Literacy into Action on LinkedIn
Video with caption: "As part of Financial Literacy Month, FCAC has released a new video Tip Clip to encourage consumers to budget first.". Video available at: http://stream1.newswire.ca/cgi-bin/playback.cgi?file=20121121_C9835_VIDEO_EN_20971.mp4&posterurl=http://photos.newswire.ca/images/20121121_C9835_PHOTO_EN_20971.jpg&clientName=Financial%20Consumer%20Agency%20of%20Canada&caption=As%20part%20of%20Financial%20Literacy%20Month%2C%20FCAC%20has%20released%20a%20new%20video%20Tip%20Clip%20to%20encourage%20consumers%20to%20budget%20first%2E&title=Having%20trouble%20budgeting%3F%20It%27s%20time%20for%20a%20better%20way%2E%20&headline=%23FLM2012%3A%20Top%20five%20tips%20from%20%40FCACan%20for%20spending%20wisely%20and%20saving%20money%20this%20holiday%20season
Image with caption: "With the holiday season and the end of the year just ahead, now is the time to make sure that you have a solid grasp of your finances. (CNW Group/Financial Consumer Agency of Canada)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20121121_C9835_PHOTO_EN_20968.jpg
SOURCE: Financial Consumer Agency of Canada
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