Before getting to our growing squad’s goals for the next year, I checked in with last year’s participants to see how they fared with their 2016 resolutions.
This year, Jordan successfully made his full Home Buyers’ Plan repayments, and made use of the Universal Child Care Benefit (as well as generous gifts from family and friends) to get his son’s RESP off to a great start. Alyssa kept up with her automated monthly deposits into her RRSP using WealthSimple, and saved enough money with her husband to buy a used car.
Julia continued to make biweekly contributions to her RRSP, while Kerri-Lynn has restarted her savings after buying a house and paying for her wedding. Nicole kept her savings contributions stable, and met her goal of saving enough money for a European vacation with her mom and sister.
Chrissy is tantalizingly close to paying off her student loan, while Idriss paid off his car. Kayla paid off her credit card debt and was still able to travel this year, thanks to savings and her parents’ credit card points.
Craig just barely managed to save 15% of his gross salary in his RRSP and TFSA, bought an international stock index ETF to get more global equity exposure, and began using his credit card to make contributions to the Saskatchewan Pension Plan and earn cash back. He also paid off at least $7,500 in debt (mostly mortgage debt). However, he didn’t learn options trading as a way to earn extra income. While Kaman didn’t manage to reduce her spending on eating out, she did sign up for a travel rewards credit card and earned enough points to pay for half of a recent trip to Vancouver.
With a productive year behind us, here’s a rundown of our resolutions for 2017:
Jordan: “I intend to take 75% of my savings out of my non-registered high-interest savings account, and invest it in a TFSA.”
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.”
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.”
Julia: “I plan to also contribute enough money on a monthly basis to my HISA in order to (eventually) save for a down payment on a condo.”
Kayla: “Save 15% of my net salary every month. And DON’T TOUCH IT unless it’s for travel!”
Reza: “I’m going to increase my RRSP contribution to $150, paid biweekly.”
Craig: “I’d like to save 10-15% of my gross salary and pay down about $5,000 of non-mortgage debt.”
Jacob: “I want to contribute $50 from each pay cheque to my savings account.”
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.”
Jane: “I’m going to save 10-15% of my net income every month, open a TFSA, and learn more about investing.”
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.”
Idriss: “As new homeowner, I want to make sure to keep ahead of my mortgage payments and other home related costs.”
Alyssa: “I would like to stay focused on my savings to purchase an income property for Dec. 31, 2017.”
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!”
Wallace: “I plan to create an emergency fund.”
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.”
Jennifer: “My resolution is to spend 25% less on food from restaurants. I want to enjoy my kitchen and cook more!”
Jessica: “I am going to put a minimum of $1,500 a month into a high-interest savings account so that in a year and a half’s time I will have enough money to travel for an extended period of time.”
Brandon: “I plan on saving 8-10% of my net salary per month for home renovations.”
Do you have a financial resolution for 2017? Let us know in the comments section below.