The Dough Report
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.
“I went for a burrito after working out and explored my new campus.”
Financial experts everywhere tell you that your credit card is the enemy. They say that you will overspend and end up a slave to your debt. This can absolutely be a problem for some people. But it doesn’t have to be. If you’re good with your money, there are a lot of benefits when you use your credit card for everything.
Everyone is familiar with the stereotypical woman who spends more time worrying about what shoes to buy than whether she’ll have enough to retire on later in life. She racks up Carrie Bradshaw-like credit card debt on good times with her girlfriends and those “steal of a deal” designer outfits.
When it comes to getting a mortgage, most people are pretty clueless. We’re likely to believe whatever the nice lady at the bank tells us about the whole process.
Being a student means making budget your middle name. What better place to start than with your cell phone plan? You want enough minutes, lots of texting, and a data plan that won’t quit.
On your first day on your college campus, you might run into credit card companies trying to urge you to sign up. The offers are always irresistible. A free frisbee? A free racket? A free bag? Sign me up!
Home insurance is one of the costs of owning property. You dutifully pay the monthly bill and don’t give it a second thought. But have you ever wondered what it actually covers?
Editor's Note: Weddings are an exciting event in someone's life and there is a lot of planning that goes into organizing the perfect day, as well as everything that comes afterwards.
For most people, their mortgage will be by far the biggest debt they’ll ever take on. And yet, I hear of thousands of people spending more time deciding on which hotel they’ll stay at during their next vacation. They view mortgages as interchangeable, less unique than the Borg on Star Trek.
Thanksgiving is coming up quickly and it’s time to make the traditional trip to the grocery store to stock up on all things turkey. Even if you’re not doing turkey, you might be in the mood to do something a little different.
“I wish I could afford to go on a trip. It must be nice. I could never afford a trip.”
Children are one of life’s greatest gifts. Well, most of the time they are. You might not be feeling that way when Precious #1 is shout-singing a lullaby to her baby doll and Precious #2 is fused to your leg while you wash dishes.
“All you have to do is fill out this form and you’ll get free money.”
“A journey is best measured in friends, rather than miles.” – Tim Cahill
I’d always heard people say that you never know how expensive wedding are until you actually plan one. I had dismissed this as hogwash – it’s a 15 minute ceremony and a dinner, how expensive could it possibly be??
“Procrastination is like a credit card. It’s a lot of fun until you get the bill.” – Christopher Parker
You have balanced your budget, invested in your retirement and bought your home with a good down payment. You have a family and want to pass your financial wisdom down to your young ones, but aren't too sure exactly how to do that.
Thanks to the world of low interest rates, crazy storms and a myriad of other factors, it seems like home insurance rates have gone through the roof over the last few years.
Good afternoon, everyone!
We are very excited to share with you a special initiative we’ve been working on!
“Why did it cost me $29 just to access my OWN money last month?”
Sending your teen to college comes with so many to do’s. College tuition needs to be paid, textbooks need to be ordered and daily living necessities need to be bought. As a parent, you want to send your child off to college as prepared as possible.
You really need to focus when driving or it’s going to cost you a small fortune in Ontario as of September 1, 2015. The fines have gone up and if you get caught, you’re going to be cursing as you pay your fines. Then you’re going to see your new insurance rates go up and probably curse even more.
When you think about donating, you might think about the Salvation Army Santas or Sally Struthers’ "Feed the Children!" advertisements on television. What you might not think about are all the ways you can maximize your charity giving with your credit card.
I recently spent the better part of a day moving into a new apartment, which, all things considered, was a terrible waste of a perfectly nice summer day. Why do I own such heavy things?
Are you flying out of Toronto? Are you flying into Toronto?
Being a resident of Toronto and a frequent flyer, I know a few things about the airport here. Our main airport is the Toronto Pearson International Airport and there are a few things that you need to know about it if you’re going to be traveling to Toronto.
If you have kids are you worried about how they're going to afford a college education? Maybe you're thinking about how you can help them get a head start on paying for a post-secondary education. Whether it’s college, trade school, or all-the-way to university, it’s never too early to start saving for your college education.
“I don’t know anyone. This sucks.”
That was what I thought to myself on the first day of college.
Whether your little darling is just starting preschool or is heading off to university, back to school is the time to start shopping around for binders, backpacks, pens and pencils.
Many renters are under the impression that they don’t need any sort of insurance. After all, the guy who owns the house has insurance, and that’ll cover them in case the place burns down.
But without insurance, renters are taking a huge risk. Here’s why every renter should have tenant’s insurance.
“If you want to get laid, go to college. If you want an education, go to the library.” – Frank Zappa
If you’re starting college, I’m totally jealous of you! I wish I could go back to college. I still remember my first day on campus in 2005. It was so humbling to walk around and not know anyone. I saw groups of friends cracking jokes. I didn’t even know anyone there.
Labour Day weekend is a great time to get together with friends. It’s the last hurrah for long days in the sun, splashing in the surf and sand between your toes. Or at least that’s what I imagine it looks like for people not occupying landlocked provinces with the closest body of salty water being a mountain range away. But I’m not going to let that stop me from finding the best way to celebrate summer one last time.
When you go on a road trip with your family or when you’re driving around town, you don’t want to worry about the safety of your car. You work hard for your money, so when you buy a vehicle you want something that’s reliable so that you get the most out of your hard earned money.
This is why we know customers in the market for a new car are highly concerned about safety.
Your first credit card is a big deal. Your decisions now can have an impact on whether you will be approved for other credit products over the next few years. If you use your credit card wisely, a.k.a. make payments on time and keep the balance low, you will build a credit history and a high credit score.
Imagine coming home after a nice week away at the lake. You’re the nice kind of tired, refreshed and ready to tackle a new week at work. But as you approach your house, something isn’t right. As you go inside, it finally hits you. Somebody has broken in while you’re away.
I can’t believe that I’m no longer in college. When I was a student I thought that college would never end. I never thought that the weekend would come. Now here I am in my late-20s writing about student credit cards as I think back to my first days with credit.
Ah summer. The time to soak up some patio sun, relax on some far flung beach and score some sweet deals. Here are four ways you can save money on your favourite items during the hot summer months.
Are you excited to finally get on the road? Do you finally have your license in your hands?
I have a late birthday (December 26th), so I was the last one of my friends to drive. I know how it feels to wait around for an eternity waiting to drive. I hated it. I had to see my friends drive to school while I was stuck on foot patrol walking everywhere. I couldn’t wait to get behind the wheel.
When I finally started driving, I realized that it wasn’t cheap and that I was in for more than I bargained.
Wedding planning is like a second full-time job, if you've ever planned a wedding you know exactly what I'm talking about. Putting together a massive event with all the moving parts can be overwhelming for even the most capable bride-to-be.
I couldn’t believe my ears when my insurance agent first told me.
Are you in the market for a new car? Will you be buying a new vehicle this year?
We have great news for you. I looked around to find the top cars of the new year. I also have bad news. I don’t plan on buying a new car for a few years. So this article is about me getting excited for cars that I won’t be driving (unless I go for a test drive).
You love your yard. You want to create a welcome retreat from the world, an oasis where one can read a book or enjoy time with friends and family. The only problem is you’re short the big bucks needed to create the perfect landscape.
You worked hard, cut back, and saved up. You can finally afford to make a down payment on that home. You’re now living in your first home. You’re now on your own and responsible for your own decisions.
The issue of home insurance comes up. What do you do? What should you pay?
Nobody wants to have their car stolen.
There are ways you can minimize the risks of this, of course. You’d be surprised how many people I know who don’t normally lock their car. Parking inside of a garage or indoor area helps as well.
"It is not true that people stop pursuing dreams because they grow old; they grow old because they stop pursing dreams." – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
You’re in a unique place after college. For the first time in your life you’re actually in control of your schedule. You can do whatever you want. You can spend your money on whatever you want.
With that being said, I’ve seen too many friends get distracted and fall deeper into debt after college. I don’t want this to happen to you. I want you to be better off than the average person in their 20s.
Good morning. Don't you just love summer? The sunshine, the fresh air, the taste of home grown veggies and the smell of fresh cut flowers. I do. I live in the middle of downtown Montreal and I don't even have a balcony, let alone a garden, but that's never stopped me from trying to grow my own flowers and vegetables. The one thing I always miss about my childhood home (other than my mother's chocolate chip pancakes) is having a garden.
Editor’s Note: This post was published in August 2013 and August 2014 and has been updated and redesigned for 2015.
Is your home protected? Do you have home insurance?
If you’re a new homeowner then you’re likely wondering as to why you even need insurance. You’re trying to cut back on the expenses and you’re debating insurance. I get that.
Well, insurance is one of those things that you don’t think you need...until you need it. Things happen and life throws us curveballs when we least expect it.
Backpacking is more than just a rite of passage for twenty-somethings between high school and college, it's a growing trend with people from all walks of life. Get it? Walks of life. You walk when you backpack. Haaaaa. Yeah.
The time has come. Your teenager has started making noises about learning how to drive. You’ve dreaded this moment but you know you have to do it. Your dulcet darling wants behind the wheel and they are the legal age. What to do?
You’re going to remember your first credit card just like a first car or a first home. When the time is right and you think that you can handle it, you can apply for your piece of plastic.
Join our #MyYard Giveaway and show off your awesome yards! Lowest Rates is excited to be hosting a photo sharing contest to celebrate the summer!
Happy Civic Holiday Everyone! I hope you're all enjoying this extra long weekend. There's nothing better than having some time off work, still getting paid and being able to get outside and enjoy the gorgeous summer weather.
Now that I’m comfortably in my 30s, I tend to be more interested in watching sports than playing them. My body just doesn’t recover very quickly any longer.
But watching sports can easily add up to thousands of dollars per year in expenses, especially if you’re going to every hot game you can. Here’s how to enjoy yourself without breaking the bank.
Editor's Note: A wedding is a very special time in someone's life and summer seems to be wedding season. What better way to cherish this moment than to have a bride to be share all her little secrets with us. Please welcome Vanessa from Vanessa's Money back to our blog today as she gives us the second post in our Wedding Diary series and spills the beans on how to plan a destination wedding.
Unfortunately I have to write an article about insurance claims. The writing part I enjoy. The experience is the part I’m not excited about. Usually when I write about a topic like this, I research other blog posts. Not this time. I have to write about my own recent experience. For the first time in my life, I was involved in a minor accident. I’m not even upset because everyone was fine. I’m more annoyed by the process.
You are looking to save on travel. Your first stops are airline and hotel sites. After all, these are the big ticket items that can make or break a holiday budget. But if you need to get around, a car rental can start to add up if you’re not careful.
Here are four ways to save beaucoup bucks on your next car rental.
After almost a year abroad, I’m back in Canada. Once I got the important stuff out of the way -- like eating my weight in delicious foods that I missed -- my girlfriend and I came to an important realization. We needed a place to live.
With the PanAm games taking over Toronto and as an avid sports fan myself I thought it would be perfect to talk about ways you can support your team.
You’re all set. You’ve booked your flights and reserved your hotel. You’re bound for sunshine and sea and nothing is standing in your way...except for all that pesky packing.Traveling on the cheap is more than getting the best deals on your all-inclusive. Here are five must haves to make your summer getaway easy breezy (and affordable!):
Do you want to finally start working out? Do you want to be consistent with your workouts without going poor?