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A weekly reality check on sensible investing and financial decision-making for Canadians. Hosted by Benjamin Felix and Cameron Passmore.

Mar 2, 2023

The intersection between economics and psychology makes the subject of personal finance complex. To help us elucidate this topic is personal finance reporter at the Globe and Mail and the author of the bestselling book "Money Like You Mean It, Personal Finance Tactics for the Real World.", Erica Alini. Her journey into finance journalism began when she started working for the Wall Street Journal immediately after the financial crisis of 2007/08. Since then, Erica has become an accomplished writer and journalist, having worked for many respected organizations. She is also the author of a best-selling book, Money Like You Mean It, which provides readers with a nuanced understanding of the economic forces that shape financial struggles and how to overcome them. In this conversation, we talk to Erica about the importance of knowing yourself and your debt, the money bucket system, and the definition of financial abuse. We also discuss the various types of debt traps people should avoid, the dangers of micropayments, and what to be aware of when looking for a mortgage, as well as advice for finding a reliable mortgage broker, the avalanche versus the snowball model, and much more. Tune in to discover how to take back control of your finances and avoid the burden of debt with personal finance expert, Erica Alini.


Key Points From This Episode:


•    Why Erica thinks Canadians have so much household debt. (0:02:24)

•    Strategies that people can implement to avoid the debt trap. (0:04:58)

•    Erica’s opinion on budgeting as a tool to manage spending. (0:08:34)

•    How the ‘bucketing model’ changes for a couple as opposed to an individual. (0:12:10)

•    How couples with different incomes should share expenses. (0:14:17)

•    Signs of an unhealthy financial relationship between partners. (0:17:06)

•    The amount of money an emergency fund should have. (0:21:17)

•    What consumers should know about the different debt products available. (0:24:08)

•    Discover the downside of taking a mortgage with the lowest interest rate. (0:33:55)

•    Whether or not an independent mortgage broker is better than a bank. (0:38:05)

•    Important insights about credit scores. (0:39:51)

•    Whether people should rent or buy property. (0:45:13)

•    How the traditional sense of a good job with sufficient income has changed. (0:50:34)

•    Erica’s approach to explaining the risk of investing in stocks. (0:56:46)

•    Insights about the math of a financial decision versus the psychology. (0:58:25)

•    How Erica defines success in her life. (1:00:29)



Extra: Questions to ask a mortgage broker:

1.     What kind of penalty will you have to pay for breaking your contract?

2.     Is the cap on your lump-sum payments 10 percent or 20 percent of your mortgage balance?

3.     Will you be able to make lump-sum payments any time or just once a year?

4.     Can you double your payments?

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Money Like You Mean It

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