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Our 2017 Financial Resolutions: Mid-Year Update

It’s an annual tradition for staffers to share our financial resolutions for the coming year. But pledging change is easier said than done–actually following through requires effort. In the spirit of accountability, we’re checking in to see how everyone is doing.

In December, the team shared our latest resolutions for 2017. We’ll do a full recap at the end of this year, but here’s how everyone has fared so far:

Kaman: “I want to save a total of 25% of my gross salary by the end of the year, never miss a credit card bill payment, and get life insurance.”

Mid-year update: “So far I have never missed a credit card bill payment (hurray!), but I have yet to put 25% of my gross salary in my bank account and get life insurance.”

Greye: “I’ll be working to max out my RRSP contributions starting this year in order to take full advantage of my available contribution room.”

Mid-year update: “I’ve been able to keep up with monthly RRSP contributions without issue, and I’m fully on track to maxing out my contribution room for the second year in a row.”

Reza: “I’m going to increase my RRSP contribution to $150, paid biweekly.”

Mid-year update: “I have managed to increase my RRSP contribution to $150 biweekly. The key to this was setting up automatic withdrawals from my bank to the investment account.”

Craig: “I’d like to save 10-15% of my gross salary and pay down about $5,000 of non-mortgage debt.”

Mid-year update: “I’m on track to save more than 15% of my gross salary. Reinvesting my tax refund in my TFSA will help get me there. However, I won’t be able to pay off as much debt as planned due to a renovation I decided to undertake as a result of a leaking pipe in my bathroom.”

Jacob: “I want to contribute $50 from each pay cheque to my savings account.”

Mid-year update: “Instead of saving $50 a pay cheque I’ve been able to save about $300 a cheque.”

Kerri-Lynn: “I want to cut back on the things that bring me the least amount of joy, like lunch meals. I want to halve my average lunch cost from $15 to $7.50. On the savings side, I will contribute $750 per month to my RRSP or $9,000 for the year.”

Mid-year update: “I’m doing well with my retirement savings and have cut down lunch costs for the most part by using Ritual instead of Uber. I order ahead and pick up my lunch nearby through Ritual instead of paying for delivery with Uber.”

Jane: “I’m going to save 10-15% of my net income every month, open a TFSA, and learn more about investing.”

Mid-year update: “I opened a TFSA and have been faithfully saving 15% of my net monthly income, but haven’t made any moves on the investing front.”

Chrissy: “Completely pay off my student loan (it will be gone by March). Once that is taken care of, I want to take the $700 I was paying on my loan each month and use it to increase my RRSP and TFSA contributions to $550 each.”

Mid-year update: “I paid off my student loan a month earlier than planned, and it feels amazing! I have also increased my TFSA and RRSP contributions like I wanted but am contributing more to my TFSA and less to my RRSP.”

Idriss: “As a new homeowner, I want to make sure to keep ahead of my mortgage payments and other home related costs.”

Mid-year update: “A few surprises came up when we renovated the upstairs of our house (leaky roof), but overall we’re on track! There is definitely a greater understanding of how much you want to do vs. what you can do vs. what you can afford to do.”

Alyssa: “I would like to stay focused on my savings to purchase an income property for Dec. 31, 2017.”

Mid-year update: “I haven’t achieved my goal yet but would really like to make the purchase before end of year!”

Nicole: “I’m one of those multi-credit card users to take advantage of perks, but I consistently carry a balance. I resolve to pay off the balance of two of my credit cards and be in the habit of keeping them at $0 by the end of 2017!”

Mid-year update: “I was hoping to have this goal achieved by mid-year, and really impress myself! But, some unmissable vacations got in the way and I’ve been a bit spend-heavy. However, I am on track to reach my goal by the end of the year!”

Wallace: “I plan to create an emergency fund.”

Mid-year update: “Despite moving into a new house, I have been able to set up an emergency fund. I will continue to increase the size however as it’s not where I’d like it to be.”

Cody: “I intend to dump my $14.95/month chequing account and get a no-fee chequing account. As well, save $1,000 a month to my RRSP/TFSA.”

Mid-year update: “It took about 10 minutes to sign up for a new account online. I also got a better rewards credit card out of this move! For saving, the average is only $500/month. I have some catching up to do! I will hunker down for the remaining months and get back on track. Moral of the story: dogs are expensive.”

Jennifer: “My resolution is to spend 25% less on food from restaurants. I want to enjoy my kitchen and cook more!”

Mid-year update: “I’ve found it hard to stray from my habit of eating at restaurants. Once BBQ season started, I’ve found it a bit easier to prepare my dinners at home but I still have steps to take before the end of the year!”

Brandon: “I plan on saving 8-10% of my net salary per month for home renovations.”

Mid-year update: “Some unforeseen circumstances have me below my 8-10%, but it’s coming along nicely.”

Several people have joined since we published our resolutions, so we couldn’t leave them out of the fun. Here’s what they plan to do:

Matt (marketing manager): “I plan to open a new personal trading account to make better use of my savings, with the hope of increasing the total value by +10% by year end.”

Simon (content marketing specialist): “I want to fully pay off my line of credit (and keep it that way) while continuing to save 15% of my income.”

Jamie (marketing manager): “I plan to be better at managing my investments.”

Aashti (PR coordinator): “My financial resolution is to audit how much I’ve spent on restaurant meals and takeout over the past year, and halve that amount by cooking more. I would also like to open an RRSP and begin making regular contributions.”

Kayla (marketing manager): “I plan on saving 15% of my net income every month, and spend less money on take out and restaurants.”

Rebecca (associate account manager and office manager): “I plan on continuing to save a minimum of 10% of my monthly income in order to grow my TFSA with WealthSimple and double my RRSP.”

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