TOOLS & RESOURCES
to MANAGE MONEY

I spend a lot of time online, in books and talking to 
people about the tools, tricks and tips for 
managing money well.
Over the years, I’ve gathered what I consider 
the ‘best’ and used them to manage my own 
finances and made money decisions easier.
Here are those tools and resources:

Banking

  • Simplii – I use Simplii for day-to-day banking. My account set up was long before 2017, when CIBC re-branded it’s direct banking division to Simplii.  That was when there were few free-banking account alternatives in the market. Things have changed — dramatically. These days another great option is Scotiabank’s direct banking brand, Tangerine
  • KOHO – I like Fintech that helps us to become smarter consumers and better savers. For that reason, I’ve signed up for KOHO’s free personal ‘bank’ account that pays 1.2% in interest (on the balance in the account) and 0.5% cash-back on all on all purchases!
  • EQ Bank – I’ve been an EQ Bank account-holder pretty much since they opened. I use them for high-interest savings — and they consistently rank top of the list for highest interest paid on savings accounts in Canada.
  • BMO – We use the BMO eBusiness Plan for our corporation’s day-to-day banking. Keeping in line with the “I hate bank fees” sentiment, this account does not charge a monthly fee and offers unlimited electronic transactions.

 

Investing

  • RBC Direct Investing – This is where my ‘core’ investments reside — the bulk of the money invested for my retirement and sheltered in a tax-advantaged account, such as an RRSP and TFSA.
  • TD Direct Investing – This was the first direct investing account I opened and I started with e-series mutual funds using a monthly payment plan (and a dollar-cost averaging strategy).
  • Questrade – Great for my ‘explore’ money — investments where I think I can beat the market (and sometimes I do!).


Other Options (I don’t use)

  • Wealthsimple – I’m not a fan of robo-advisors, but everyone I know appears to like the Wealthsimple platform and offerings. While the company’s commission-free trading was enticing, I didn’t like the 15-minute lag on stock quotes. The firm does offer 5% collateral to protect against sudden last-minute price changes, but I’d prefer to use Stop Orders and Limits on real-time quotes.
  • EQ Bank GICs – I don’t invest using GICs, but if I did my first stop would be with EQ Bank. I’m already a client and the firm consistently offers some of the best rates on GICs in Canada.


Credit Cards

  • Capital One Aspire Mastercard — For almost 10 years this was our family’s primary credit card. Despite the $120 annual fee, the 2% cash back on everything meant we’d accumulate enough cash back points to pay for our family’s annual vacation! In 2020 this changed when we, along with all the other Aspire cardholders, were notified that our cashback rate would drop to 1.5% and there would be no annual point bonus (the equivalent of the annual fee). Sad but we moved on.
  • Rogers World Mastercard
  • American Express Cashback Card
  • PC Financial Mastercard — 
  • Canadian Tire Triangle Rewards Mastercard
  • Tangerine World Mastercard – Another option for everyday spending.


Credit Check

  • MyTrueIdentity — We were given a 2-year free-of-charge account with this credit monitoring service after being caught up in a big credit card fraud scandal. 
  • Borrowell – Option to view your credit score, for free.


Insurance

  • Dan Anders
  • TD Insurance – I use them for home and auto insurance.
  • Sonnet – I use them for home and auto insurance.


Estate Planning & Wills

  • Willful – I used them to make my will online.

Mortgage Loans

  • Karl’s Mortgage Calculator 

 

Comparison Tools

  • MoneyWise.ca 
  • Consumer’s Report
  • RedFlagDeals Forums

 

Books

Investing

Money Mindset & Habits

Real Estate

For More Tools…

Resources Part II