The Dough Report
While all motorists are required by law to have car insurance, I find that most people can’t be bothered to shop around to make sure they’re getting the right coverage at the best price. If you’re anything like me, you probably haven’t even bothered to change insurance companies since you first started driving.
An older friend once joked around about how if you want your pockets to jingle, you should stay single. However, once you fall in love it’s difficult to say no to that relationship. While being in a relationship can be costly, the trick is to not go broke just because you’re with someone now.
With the exception of housing, my biggest expense is food. I bet it’s yours too.
With relatively few rental vacancies in Manitoba (2.4% according to the 2011 National Household Survey) and record low interest rates, it’s no surprise that more and more folks are choosing to purchase their own home by getting a mortgage in Manitoba. Roughly 70% of Manitoban households own the roof over their head with the remaining 30% choosing to rent.
If you drive in Canada, chances are you probably have a strong opinion on winter tires, whether you want to or not. Do you really need them? And if so, which ones best fit your lifestyle?
“Tomorrow is the first blank page of a 365-page book. Write a good one.” -- Brad Paisley
Food is one thing we all have in common. Everyone needs nourishment to live. By that standard, we should spend money to keep our bellies full and forget about the costs. However, savvy shoppers know that good food doesn't always have to come with a high price tag.
When it comes to buying a car, most of us need a little help. A car loan can help you get the capital you require to make your car purchase.
Are you planning on applying for a mortgage in the near future? If you live in Ontario, then you need to read this article before you start home shopping.
Especially after the holidays, many Canadians find themselves struggling with credit card debt. Add in things like car payments, mortgages, and student loans, and it’s easy to see how the weight of debt can get unmanageable.
At what age should you start teaching your kids about money?
There has long been a stigma related to mental health issues. However, attitudes in Canada have been changing for the better over the last five years.
Everything. Is. Negotiable.
Are you fed up with spending so much money on car insurance?
It happens to even the best of us.
For many people, buying a home is a cherished financial and lifestyle goal. Most of us, though, need help buying a home. The Alberta Real Estate Association reports that the average provincial price for homes sold in November 2015 was $385,430. Most of us don't have that kind of cash laying around, so a mortgage is necessary.
“I didn’t realize that this was an event for bloggers.”
If you've ever moved - even if it was just a few blocks away - you know that moving can be very expensive and a lot of work. There are deliveries that need to be planned, movers that need to be scheduled, and boxes that need to be packed.
You’re about to get a car. You’re fed up with borrowing your dad’s car and you don’t want to wait for the bus anymore. You’re making money and it's time for you to start driving on your own.
When I first started collecting credit card rewards, cash back – not travel rewards – was king. I didn’t even want to think about getting on an airplane with a baby or a couple of toddlers. Credit card travel rewards could wait.
“Why would I waste four more years in school?”
Deciding how much house to buy can be tricky. On the one hand, you want as much house as possible. However, you also still want to be able to comfortable afford your other expenses.
If there’s one topic that gets our readers raring, it’s almost any update in the auto or car insurance industry.
If you’re like most people, the idea of doing taxes sends shivers down your spine. In fact, just looking at your tax slips, with all the boxes and numbers can make you swear to hire a tax guy next year to do everything for you.
How much life insurance do you really need?
January is Alzheimer’s Awareness Month here in Canada, an event sponsored by the Alzheimer Society of Canada. The purpose of the month is to raise awareness for all forms of dementia, which is a serious problem.
There are a few different ways to shop around for cheap car insurance in Ontario. Some of them are helpful and some of them are a total waste of time.
It's never a bad thing to have ambitious financial goals. Ideas of paying off thousands of dollars of credit card debt, or saving up six months' worth of expenses are good things.
The champagne is finished, the friends have left, and all you’re left with is a bit of a hangover -- and not just from the alcohol. This is when all the holiday credit card bills come in and reality hits home: I spent how much on gifts this year?
“Man cannot discover new oceans unless he has the courage to lose sight of the shore.” – Andre Gide
Here comes another year. Chances are, you’re one of the thousands of people hoping to make New Year resolutions that will enrich your life. But what can you really do to start 2016 the right way?
Once the excitement of a new romance has worn off it’s time to face the paperwork that is merging bank accounts. While it doesn’t make sense for every couple to combine finances, it can be a good choice in some cases.
Here at LowestRates.ca, we think community efforts are important. We love participating in our community, as well as encouraging readers and consumers to share with us. Our initiatives to give back, as well as the giveaways we host, allow us to connect with you and with others in the community.
The last week of December is traditionally a time to take a look back at the year that was. In that spirit, we’ve rounded up the blog posts that resonated with our readers the most.
New Year’s Eve is tomorrow, and many of us have plans to ring in another year with family and friends. Unfortunately, New Year’s Eve can be expensive, depending on what you end up doing.
The end of the year means it's time to re-evaluate everything in our lives from relationships and health to finances and careers.
During the holiday season, many of us spend time reflecting on ways to boost our finances in the New Year. January usually begins with good intentions, making New Year’s resolutions that we stick with for a few weeks or months before ending up right back where we started.
Yes, it’s that time of the year again. The malls are going to be swamped and you’re going to be hearing Christmas tunes everywhere. In between stressing about shopping for gifts and trying to figure out how to get out of that party that you really don’t want to attend, chances are that the holidays will pass you by pretty quickly.
The holiday season seems more magical when you have kids. As a result, it makes sense to create an environment of fun all season long. If you can get the kids involved for the entire month of December, it makes the entire holiday season that much more fun. That's why one of my favourite holiday traditions is Elf on the Shelf.
Shopping for car insurance is one of those tedious things, like visiting the dentist, that people ought to do every year but often put off. Also like visiting the dentist, shopping for car insurance means paying a hefty bill at the end of the process. Unless you’re a smart shopper, you can end up paying more than you need to.
These days, it seems like the average Canadian homeowner is easily paying more than $100 per month in home insurance. It can be a big part of someone’s budget, especially for first time home buyers.
The best things in life are free. The same principle holds true when it comes to Christmas trees.
“Why’s my insurance quote so ridiculous?”
Are you one of those people who’s been so busy that you just realized that Christmas is only a few days away? Are you frozen with fear at the thought of visiting the mall this weekend, knowing full well that hundreds of other people are in the same situation as you? Are you scouring the internet for last minute gift ideas that won’t break the bank?
College students are known for being broke and living off scraps. We all remember college as the time in our lives where we were dirt poor. The reality is that you don’t have to be flat broke in college. You can make some extra cash so that you can afford a few extra concerts and even a trip.
As the weather gets colder and the days become drearier, many of us want to head to warmer climes.
Credit scores definitely aren’t a sexy part of personal finance. It’s easy to get excited about paying off debt or hitting new net worth milestones. The only time someone cares about their credit score is when they’re applying for a mortgage.
Since the financial crisis of 2008, Canadian policymakers have been concerned about the accelerating pace of the housing market. Unlike the US housing market, the Canadian housing market has been rather robust.
It’s easy to lose sight of the true meaning of Christmas when you’re combing through Black Friday deals trying to find the perfect gift at the best possible price. Indeed, Canadians plan to spend almost $900 this year on Christmas gifts, decorations, and holiday food.
Are you looking for a better credit card rate? Are you fed up with dealing with your high interest rate?
Hooray, we’re married!
Do you want to chase a wild dream? Is there an outlandish idea out there that you would love to chase?
It seems like every personal finance guru agrees. If you’re looking to buy a new car, you should start saving diligently before you need it, to ensure you have the cash on hand to purchase it when the time comes.
But maybe the gurus are wrong. Here’s the logic in taking the car loan instead of paying cash.
Mortgage contracts rank right up there with the cell phone provider’s terms and conditions on most people’s reading list.
Unfortunately, as the document that controls the purchase and security of the largest asset you will likely ever own – your house – an understanding of your mortgage contract is essential to feeling confident in your overall financial well-being.
If you live in Canada, you know how awful the winter season can be for your car. You also know how important it is to drive in the winter because you don’t want to be stuck walking to the bus stop when the snow is up to your ankles and you have to be at work by 8 a.m. I spent far too many winter seasons commuting to school in the snow – and I hated every minute of it.
Real estate has been a very popular investment in Canada over the last decade. The values of our houses seem to keep going up and up, which sure does make it easy to make money.
I don’t know about you, but I love going away in the winter. As soon as I see snow on the ground, I start planning a quick escape so that I can go hang out in the sun somewhere and work on my tan.
The holidays are the perfect time of year to enjoy family and friends – and get into the spirit of giving. We want to know how you celebrate the holidays, whether you observe Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwanzaa, the winter solstice, or really, really get into New Year’s Eve.
Once your finances are in order - meaning you've paid off your consumer debts and started spending less than you earn – you might be wondering what to do with your extra money each month.
If you haven’t already seen the first snowfall of the year, chances are that you will see it soon. You want to get your home ready for winter before things get too cold. Preparing your home is good practice. Not only is it good for your home, but it can also save you money.
If you follow our blog, you probably already know that November is Financial Literacy Month. A time to get savvy about your spending and get smart about your future. Seeing that we’re in the business of saving Canadians time and money, it’s kind of our favourite month of the year.
“It’s the most wonderful time of the year” -- especially if you’re a retailer or credit card company!
Black Friday marks one of the biggest days for deal finders and savvy shoppers alike - some even say it's bigger than Boxing Day. Traditionally Black Friday has always been celebrated by our American friends after their Thanksgiving, but in recent years the shopping frenzy has crossed north into Canada.
“Can you book the trip for me on your credit card? I have some issues with my credit card from my college days.”
Before I even started working, my dad lectured me about putting my money into property. Fast forward to today: I’d love to buy, but I don’t have a plan for funding my dream house.
Even though we celebrated Thanksgiving weeks ago, our neighbours to the south are just getting ready for their celebration. When you’re on a shoestring budget, hosting a big Thanksgiving dinner can seem like an impossible task. Turkeys are expensive, vegetables are out of season, and desserts can be time-consuming to make. But don’t fret my pet, where there’s a will, there’s a way.
One of my favorite financial vehicles is the Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA). Here in Canada, the government has made it clear that they want to make saving a priority, and the TFSA is one of the best ways to do this.
With the weather getting colder, many Canadians are planning trips south of the border. I’m American (don’t hold it against me), and during the fall months I see a lot of Alberta and Saskatchewan plates headed south through my home state of Idaho.
“How could my car insurance rate have gone up so much?”
"I need to live life. And I'd hate dying; it would ruin my image." -- Jack LaLanne
“Should I get a travel rewards credit card?”
Join us November 25, 2015 for the #LoonieLiteracy Financial Literacy Month tweet chat and giveaway.
Many of us – especially young people – have been in this situation before: you need a vehicle but can’t afford the down payment on a new car. On top of that, you don’t know any trusted mechanics to help make sure you don’t end up with a lemon of a used car.
Remembrance Day is a good time to reflect on the sacrifices of our armed forces, and even civilians, in times of war. The day November 11 was chosen because it marks the end of hostilities for World War I, which was one of the most brutal conflicts of the modern era. It is said that the end of the war was on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month.
November is Financial Literacy Month in Canada and today we're talking all about the benefits of buying insurance. Being financially literate is so important because only when you find all the information and know all of your options can you truly make informed financial decisions.
While it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that it is better to have money in your pocket than to owe money to a financial institution (all other factors being equal), there are situations where it makes sense to get a personal loan. Sometimes a loan is needed to smooth over a potential financial rough patch or to take advantage of a great opportunity.
Winter tires aren’t a sexy topic, but thanks to Ontario’s recent insurance discount, we’re all talking about tires anyway. Yes, I’m looking at you, Facebook users. So we might as well have a serious tire talk.
In the last 20+ years, the Internet has revolutionized the way we invest, buy travel, read, and a million other things. Man, what a time to be alive.
One of the most important things you can do for your finances is learning how to prioritize your spending. Understanding what matters -- and what doesn't -- can make a big difference in your long-term financial situation.
Points! Air Miles! Gift Cards! Cash Back! There are more (and better) rewards credit cards out there than ever before. And while all that selection is a great thing for consumers, finding the right card it isn’t always easy.
Do you ever get travel insurance? Do you protect your trips just in case?
“Are you sure you should be working all of these hours?”
9/11 is one of those moments that everyone who witnessed it will have etched in their memories forever.
“I borrowed money to make the down payment on that home so I’m kind of strapped right now.”
Buying a car has never been easier than it is now. Cars are better-built, offer more options and are equipped with enough cutting-edge technology to tempt even the most miserly buyer.
Vacations are meant to be fun and the last thing people want to think are all the ways things can go wrong.
For many of us, Halloween is a time to allow the inner child to let loose. Even though I don’t go trick-or-treating, I do enjoy dressing up as I hand out candy to the neighborhood children.
What do you do when opportunity knocks? Invite it into your home and then sell. That’s what our co-founder did. Cliff Ritter sold his house privately after an agent knocked on his door and made an offer.
In the last wedding diaries post, I mentioned that we’re having three wedding receptions. The reason for this is that, well, the whole reception planning ran away from me a bit.
At the end of last week, on Friday, October 16, members of our office staff took about $750 worth of food to the Red Door Family Shelter. We were excited to participate in Food Bank Days at Red Door, and your help on social media helped us exceed our goal of donating $500 worth of groceries.
Auto insurance is just one of those things that you need to have when you buy a car. Convenience might lead you to call up your bank and make a quick and easy coverage decision, but you might want to give that choice more than a minute’s consideration.
You just got your first job after college. You’re finally making money. You’re not rich and you’re certainly not buying a mansion anytime soon. On the bright side, you’re able to finally put some money aside. You’re finally in the positive.
‘Tis the season for ghosts, ghouls, and ghastly decorated houses! Show off your Halloween spirit for your chance to win an iPad Mini.
My favourite time of year is Halloween. I love the candlelit pumpkins, the scary costumes, and the candy-seeking kids coming to my door. Finding a frugal way to do Halloween is pretty easy unless you love it and want to go all out.
At Lowest Rates, we believe that we are a part of the offline community – not just a member of the online world. Even though we are a website that provides helpful information and money-saving products to people all over Canada, we do have an office in Toronto, and our core staff resides in the community.
If you’ve been paying attention to some of our American neighbors, they’re doing something pretty interesting: by taking advantage of credit card sign-up bonuses, they’re racking up tens of thousands of travel miles, which can then be redeemed for perks like free hotel stays, cheap flights around the world, and other great deals.