Globe and Mail – Financial Facelift by Dianne Maley

web_gmm“‘We are a typical family of four living in a home we own with the bank in downtown Toronto,’ Halle writes in an e-mail. She and her husband, Hank, are in their late 30s with two young children. They both have ‘pretty good jobs’ with a combined income of more than $180,000 in the health care sector… They have a mortgage and some investments as well as a small line of credit. They have begun saving for their children’s education. ‘On paper it looks okay, but we always feel stretched and have not had a proper vacation in years,’ Halle adds. When their children are both in school and their daycare costs drop, they’d like to buy a cottage on the East Coast – they figure they can get one for $120,000 – and a new car, ‘but we’re not sure if we can or if it would be better to pay down our mortgage faster instead.’ They hope to retire at 60 with an annual budget of $85,000 after tax. Fortunately, Halle has a defined-benefit pension plan at work. We asked Gina Macdonald, a fee-only financial planner at Macdonald, Shymko & Co. Ltd. in Vancouver, to look at Hank and Halle’s situation. Click here to read the rest of the article

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