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18 financial tips from Laurier's FinLit students

Over the 2020/21 Fall and Winter terms, Laurier’s Faculty of Education offered “Let's Talk Money  A Three-Part Financial Wellness Series” presented by Fred Masters of Masters Money Management, sponsored by Manulife.

This free financial literacy workshop series covered credit scores, social entrepreneurship, debt, real estate, investing and financial life after graduation, and was open to current students, recent alumni and community members connected to Laurier. The course will also run in the Spring/Summer 2021 term. 

Manulife volunteers helped Masters deliver presentations. Volunteer Cherry Xiang was “impressed with how many questions the students asked, showing how well the content resonated and the urge to learn more.”

“The information is invaluable, especially in your student days,” said Cherry. “I wish I had the opportunity to participate in a session like this when I was in school.”

Students shared the following 18 suggestions for money management in their feedback after the course*:


1. Pay down all debt right away. 

2. Your emergency fund should be three to six months worth of salary, before you start investing in savings.

3. Set up a Registered Retirement Savings Plan for each of your children, to set them up for success and also set yourself up for an early retirement.


4. Increase your credit limit so that it stays below 30 per cent of your income. Your credit score drops if over 30 per cent of your credit card is used.

5. Cash-back credit cards are a good thing (I’d always assumed there was a catch, since they seem to belong in the realm of “too good to be true!”).

6. Opening a line of credit while working is a good idea, even if you aren't planning to use it.

7. Automate bill payments so as not to incur fees or credit damage.


8. Don't be afraid of investing.

9. When considering investment opportunities, don’t “put all your eggs in one basket,” and try to invest on a global scale.

10. Avoid investing only in individual companies or stocks.

11. Be “in it” for the long haul. You should react to stock market fluctuations by doing nothing.

12. The younger you are, the more risks you should take, as they will result in greater returns.

13. Robo-advisors are best for those starting out or with a small portfolio.

14. Your asset allocation in equities should be [100 - your age].


15. Use a realtor service when buying your first home because they are free.

16. Mortgage default insurance is very expensive, and it is better to get life insurance.

17. Buy used cars, so you can buy more experiences.


18. Be grateful for what you have, you don't need a lot of stuff.


*The information in this article is provided by Wilfrid Laurier University as general information and should not be considered financial advice or be relied upon as financial or investment advice for specific situations.


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