Build Wealth Canada Podcast

When we first hit our financial independence number 8 years ago, one of the financial planners that I asked to look at our numbers before my wife and I quit our full-time jobs was Ed Rempel. At the time, I asked Ed if he could do his own math and analysis on our numbers, to make sure that I didn’t miscalculate something when I was doing it myself, and this way I could be certain that my wife and I could quit our jobs and live off our portfolio going forward.

Well, fast forward to today, it’s been around 8 years since we quit our full-time jobs, and so I thought it would be helpful to have Ed back on the show and to once again use us as a case study on how one can live off their portfolio in a sustainable, stress free, and tax efficient way, here in Canada.

On this episode, you’re going to learn what strategies and frameworks tend to work when it comes to living off your portfolio here in Canada.

You’ll learn about a big mistake that I made which was actually causing me money anxiety even though our investment portfolio was going up in value. Ed helped me get through that, and it’s a mistake that is actually totally avoidable, and a skill that you can start building and mastering today.

And, when it comes to a strategy for paying the least amount of tax in Canada, Ed takes us through two main strategies that you can choose depending on your situation so that you pay the least amount of tax throughout your lifetime.

We cover all this and much more in the interview.

Links, show notes and free resources are all available at

Having your investments pay you large dividends or yield sounds great. It’s truly passive income where money just shows up in your account without you having to do anything, and without you having to sell off any of your investments even when markets are down.

But what if you get too focused on maximizing dividends or yield in your portfolio? After all, there is no free lunch when it comes to investing. There are always tradeoffs, and it turns out that there are some pretty significant disadvantages for investors that just try to maximize their yield or dividends at all costs, and it can result in you actually getting a substantially lower "total return" over time, on your investments.

About Our Guest

To help us learn what pitfalls to look out for when deciding on our investments, particularly when it comes to some of these very high yielding ETFs that you may be seeing recommended online, we have Chris Heakes.

Chris has over 14 years of experience in the investment industry. He’s a CFA, has a Master of Finance from the University of Toronto, and is a Director and Portfolio Manager at BMO Global Asset Management.

Chris is going to take us through what we should look out for so that we don’t fall for the yield trap.

We’ll also cover hidden fees that you may be unknowingly paying on some ETF, along with some arguably deceptive advertising to look out for that you may have seen here in Canada when it comes to your investments.

Lots to learn in this interview with Chris, so let’s jump right in.

You can see all the show notes, resources and links for this episode over at


Direct download: Avoiding_the_Yield_Trap_-_Chris_Heakes.mp3
Category:Investing -- posted at: 9:58am EDT

A big thanks to RBC for sponsoring this episode.

We talk a lot about growing our net worth as Canadians, but what about actually protecting our assets from threats like fraud?

So, I thought we’d get some security experts on the show to teach us some best practices when it comes to protecting ourselves and our family, especially when it comes to our finances, here in Canada.

They are part of the security teams at the largest bank in Canada. They have entire teams devoted to security and invest a lot of time and money to ensure that they and their clients are following the best practices.

Today, you and I are going to learn what we can do as regular Canadians, to best protect ourselves.

Our first guest is Kevin Purkiss who is the Vice President of Fraud Management at RBC. He leads the team responsible for managing RBC’s fraud capabilities, and helps protect the many thousands of Canadians that they serve.

Next, we have Kevin’s colleague, Vice-President, Shekher Puri, who’s going to take us through some additional best practices that you and I should be using, to enhance our security, especially when it comes to our finances.

And now let’s jump in to learn what you and I should be doing to better protect ourselves.

RBC Disclaimer:
This content in this podcast is intended as general information only and is not to be relied upon as constituting legal, financial or other professional advice. A professional advisor should be consulted regarding your specific situation. The information presented is believed to be factual and up-to-date but we do not guarantee its accuracy and it should not be regarded as a complete analysis of the subjects discussed. All expressions of opinion reflect the judgment of the authors as of the date of publication and are subject to change. No endorsement of any third parties or their advice, opinions, information, products or services is expressly given or implied by Royal Bank of Canada or any of its affiliates.

Direct download: How_to_Prevent_Fraud_in_Your_Accounts_in_Canada.mp3
Category:Investing -- posted at: 6:37am EDT

When it comes to managing our investment portfolios, there are definitely some mistakes that are easy to make, and ones that a lot of Canadian investors tend to do.


In this episode, we have Peter McMurtry on the show who is going to take us through what the common mistakes are that Canadian investors tend to do, as well as the best practices that he's noticed from his 30+ years in the investing industry.


One of the things Peter does is portfolio reviews for his clients, so I wanted to pick his brain on the common mistakes that he sees investors make when he reviews their portfolios so that you and I can be sure to avoid those mistakes in our own portfolio.


On the flip side, he’s also worked with clients that are successful investors, and after doing this for 30+ years, one begins to notice certain patterns about what the successful investors do, that the unsuccessful don’t. We go into these best practices that he’s noticed over the years from these successful investors, so that we can apply these lessons ourselves.


Enjoy the show, and you can get the show notes and resources over at


Wishing you all the best,



Direct download: The_Top_Investing_Mistakes_Canadians_Make_-_Peter_McMurtry.mp3
Category:Investing -- posted at: 12:37pm EDT

With inflation slowing down here in Canada, we are starting to hear talks about the Bank of Canada no longer planning to increase our interest rates, or maybe even lowering them.

This can have an impact on your investment portfolio, particularly if you hold bonds, because remember there is that inverse relationship between interest rates and bonds, where increases in the interest rate tend to lower the value of the bonds that you hold in your portfolio. On the flip side, if the Bank of Canada lowers our rates, you can expect your bonds to increase in value.

Apart from your investments, the interest rate can of course have a substantial impact on your month-to-month cashflow, when it comes to things like mortgages as well as the real estate market in general.

So, with Spring just around the corner and the real estate buying and selling season about to kick-off, I thought it would be great to have our Resident Mortgage Expert, Sean Cooper back on the show to discuss:

-What Canadians should be thinking about when it comes to their mortgages right now.

-Should you do a fixed rate or variable rate mortgage if you’re buying a home or have a mortgage coming up for renewal?

-What if you’re considering locking in your mortgage to a fixed rate?

The optimum answer for all of this can change for you depending on what is happening in the market right now and your own situation, so Sean takes us through the different things you should consider.

You’ll also learn, what your options are if you find a better mortgage than what you have right now. What if the rates do drop and you’re now able to get a less expensive mortgage? Can you switch? What can the penalties be? And, can it be worth it to pay those penalties if you find a better mortgage?

About Our Expert Guest:

In case this is your first time hearing Sean on the show, he is the show’s Resident Mortgage Expert and who I go to and who I send friends and family to for any mortgage related questions.

Sean is the bestselling author of the book, Burn Your Mortgage: The Simple, Powerful Path to Financial Freedom for Canadians.

He is also an independent mortgage broker and has made himself available to help answer mortgage related questions to listeners of the Build Wealth Canada Show.

If you have any questions, or are just looking to get a shortlist of the best mortgages that he’s been able to find in Canada (since he’s constantly on the lookout for the best mortgages), you can reach out to him over at

And now, let’s get into the interview.

Today, we’re going to cover what you need to know from a tax, investing, and financial planning perspective as we head into this new year.

As you know, the government makes changes every year in these areas and the implications of these changes can have a pretty substantial impact on how much you pay in taxes, your net worth, what government benefits you are eligible to get, and how much you get.

These can easily affect your net worth in the thousands of dollars every single year, so it’s definitely in your and my best interest to know about these changes and get a bit of a refresher, so that we can all better prepare, and also take advantage of any opportunities that arise.

About our guests:

To help me with this, I have Certified Financial Planners Jason Heath, and Hannah McVean on the show. Jason is a popular returning guest on the show, definitely one of the more well known and respected financial planners, here in Canada. 

Hannah and Jason are both fee-only financial planners, which means they don’t sell any investments so there isn’t that potential conflict-of-interest that you see a lot of here in Canada where someone calls themselves a financial planner or a financial advisor, you think you’re getting a good financial plan and that they have your best interests at heart, but really they are just trying to get you to buy the investments that their firm sells so that they can earn a hefty commission.

None of that here, we’re going for purely unbiased financial education with Hannah and Jason.

A quick little bio on these experts:

Jason has been providing fee-only, advice-only financial planning since 2002 (for well over a decade). He is also a personal finance columnist for the Financial Post, MoneySense, and Canadian MoneySaver. He has a Bachelor of Economics degree from York University and holds the Certified Financial Planner designation.

Hannah is also a Certified Financial Planner and a Chartered Investment Manager. She has experience working in the wealth management industry managing investments and filing taxes. She is now on the fee-only, advice-only financial planning side of things, and if you want to speak Jason, Hannah or someone from their team, you can reach them at

Resources Mentioned:

You can book a free introductory meeting with Jason and his team at As a Build Wealth Canada listener, you'll get 10% off if you end up working with them. You'll also be entered into the giveaway to win a free financial plan. The discount and giveaway are for a limited time, and you can sign up for free here. 

Questions Covered:

  1. To kick things off, can you take us through what we need to know for 2024, when it comes to our TFSA? and can you give us a quick refresher on how the TFSA works when it comes to taxes, and getting our contribution room back every year.

    1. Follow up question: Do you often suggest that clients keep their equities in their TFSAs due to their higher expected return compared to bonds and TFSA savings accounts?

  2. What have you found to be the most efficient way for Canadians to determine how much TFSA contribution room they currently have?

  3. Can you speak to how you can actually increase or decrease your available TFSA contribution room, depending on how your investments perform?

    1. Follow up question: How do you factor this in when you are doing financial planning for your clients?

    2. Follow up question 2: What kind of analysis do you do on TFSAs when you are working with clients and are there any optimizations or mistakes that people sometimes do that you are on the lookout for?

  4. Let’s change gears and talk about RRSPs next. Are there any changes to RRSPs that we should be aware of for 2024, and for anybody new to all this, can you give us a refresher on how RRSPs work for us Canadians, when it comes to minimizing our taxes?

  5. Can you speak about the RRSP loan strategy? This is something that we often hear mentioned in different blogs and books on finance for Canadians, but do they still make sense in this higher interest rate environment that we are now in? (please explain the strategy first for anybody not familiar)

  6. When it comes to RRSPs, are there any common and/or critical mistakes that you see Canadians make, when you are doing financial plans for your clients?

  7. The FHSA is a relatively new tool for Canadians. Can you speak to what it is, who is it for, and how do you like to analyze and factor it in, when working on financial plans for your clients?

  8. Are there any new tax credits, deductions, or government benefits in 2024 that you think we should especially be aware of? and are there any that you find Canadians sometimes tend to miss?

  9. What have you found to be the best way to ensure that we don’t miss any tax credits, deductions or government benefits that we are eligible for? (it’s a bit of an overwhelming list if we just google it)

  10. Can take us through the updates for 2024, when it comes to the basic personal amount. And can you explain what it is and the financial planning implications of it, for anybody not familiar?

  11. As we enter 2024, can you take us through a checklist of what you advise your clients to do as the year progresses? What should they be doing annually now, and as the year moves forward?

  12. Is there anything else that you think Canadians should know about, from the taxation and government benefits side as we head into the new year?

  13. I set up a page for you where show listeners can get a free consultation with your team, and that’s over at Can you tell us a bit more about what problems and challenges you and your team specialize in solving for Canadians?
Direct download: Important_Tax_and_Investing_Changes_for_2024.mp3
Category:Investing -- posted at: 10:24am EDT