Introducing A New DIY Investing Course

DIY Investing Course

It’s finally here. A do-it-yourself investing course for regular people who want to save on fees and complexity by using a low cost, all-in-one, automatically rebalancing ETF.

I want to help investors move on from paying 2% MER for a balanced mutual fund at their bank. I want to help new investors set up a sensible and globally diversified portfolio.

I also see the proliferation of questionable online investing courses promoting day trading, option writing, life insurance, crypto, etc. and I want to help investors avoid all of that nonsense.

I write about this stuff all the time, but understanding that you should reduce your investment fees and diversify your portfolio is one thing – the challenge is turning that understanding into action with your own investments.

That’s where I come in. In my work as a fee-only financial planner I’ve helped hundreds of clients make the switch to successful DIY investor.

We book a video call and share a screen so I can walk them through exactly how to open an account, open the appropriate account types, fund the account with new and recurring contributions, how to transfer existing accounts to their new self-directed platform, and how to buy and sell ETFs.

As one client recently said,

“I feel better about the decisions I will make in the future based on your recommendations. You just cut through the muck and lay it out very clearly.”

Indeed, my clients find this so valuable that I decided to record a series of videos and take it to the masses.

DIY Investing Made Easy

In DIY Investing Made Easy, you’ll get an introductory series of three videos where I explain why investment fees matter, why investing has been solved with low cost index funds, and why investing complexity has been solved with all-in-one ETFs.

I explain how to determine the right asset allocation ETF to choose based on your risk tolerance. That’s because these all-in-one ETFs come in a variety of flavours, from a conservative mix of 20% stocks and 80% bonds, to an aggressive 100% global equity ETF (and everything in between).

Finally, I explain your discount brokerage platform options – including when it makes sense to stick with your big bank’s online brokerage arm versus going with a lower cost or no cost provider.

From there I’ve created platform specific videos where I take you through opening an account, funding an account, transferring an existing account, and buying an ETF. 

It’s basically me, sitting in your living room with my laptop showing you exactly how to get started as a DIY investor.

Please note the platform specific videos available right now include RBC Direct Investing, TD Direct Investing, Questrade, and Wealthsimple Trade

While I do expect to add more online brokerage tutorials in the future, the process should be similar enough across other platforms that you’ll be able to navigate your way through it.

Final Thoughts

I’ve been working on this investing course for the past six months and I’m so excited to finally share DIY Investing Made Easy with all of you.

To be 100% clear, this is a paid product. For $399 you get access to the complete video series, with platform specific demonstrations for RBC Direct Investing, TD Direct Investing, Questrade, and Wealthsimple Trade.

With this video series you’ll have everything you need to make a successful transition to DIY investor by using a single asset allocation ETF.

Matt and Hanna, clients of mine from Duncan, BC, recently got a sneak preview of the video series to help with their own DIY investing transition and Matt offered up this kind feedback:

“Rest assured, the videos do not suck! Quite the opposite in fact. It took me all 5 minutes to watch them and make my transfer. The explanations were very easy to understand, and the screen view of the platform was very helpful. I actually said to Hanna that WealthSimple should just put these videos directly on their website.”

This investing course is for long-time holders of a big bank balanced mutual fund who want to save up to 90% in fees by switching to a low cost balanced ETF.

It’s also for fledgling stock pickers looking to reform, or brand new investors who just want to start off on the right foot with a sensible, easy to manage investing solution.

If this sounds like you, then head over to my DIY Investing Made Easy page and let’s get started!

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  1. Brad S on January 25, 2023 at 7:30 am

    Congrats on getting this going.

    • Robb Engen on January 25, 2023 at 10:41 am

      Thanks Brad – much appreciated!

  2. Gert on January 25, 2023 at 8:35 am

    I just directed my son to my advisor at BMO Nesbitt Burns and was somewhat surprised to see what was advised to invest in;
    -DynamicEdge Growth Portfolio – Series A
    MER 2.37%
    -Fidelity Canadian Large Cap Fund
    MER 2.25%
    -Sun Life KBI Sustainable Infrastructure Private Pool – Series A (medium risk)
    MER 2.44%
    We started our son at 18 with $6000 for his TFSA which he’s managed to maintain over the years. He’s now 20 and just moved from Tangerine to BMO. I’m now wonder if I made a mistake?
    Since he’s young fees will be considerable over the life time of investing.
    I’m old and it might be too late for me to switch but I wonder what advice might you have for the young.

    • Robb Engen on January 25, 2023 at 10:41 am

      Hi Gert, the investing landscape has changed for the better over the past decade or so. Now with all-in-one ETFs and robo-advisors there’s no need for young investors to get started the way we did with pricey bank mutual funds.

      • Gert on January 26, 2023 at 4:19 pm

        My financial advisor suggested ETF don’t hold what Mutuals do and that even with the fees the returns are higher than ETFs.
        Is this a true statement?

        • James R on January 28, 2023 at 12:03 pm

          It is absolutely false that a mutual fund does not hold what an ETF holds. The Fidelity Large Cap fund hold 55 Stocks including Metro, Rogers, suncor, Loblaw, Dollarama, BCE and Fortis to name a few. The only thing special about this fund is the excessive fees it charges. There are several Canadian ETFs that maintain a very similar portfolio and charge only 0.22% instead of 2.25%

          • Gert on January 28, 2023 at 3:36 pm

            Thanks very much James
            Can you provide me the name of an ETF with similar holdings?
            I have a meeting with the advisor next week.
            Great support!

          • James R on January 28, 2023 at 8:12 pm

            Hi Gert,

            I would start with Robb’s post here: Top ETFs and Model Portfolios for Canadian Investors:


            Here you can find several examples.

    • Denis on January 25, 2023 at 10:46 am

      I learned at your son’s age to stay away from mutual funds and their obscene fees. Currently with GIC @ 5% for 5 years and banks/comm stocks at up to 6% and rising (dividends not including capgains) , tough to pay those 2% fees.

      • Gert on January 25, 2023 at 4:54 pm

        Thanks for the tip, much appreciated!

    • David S on January 25, 2023 at 11:42 am

      Hi Gert. Your son should definitely avoid any bank recommended products. Have him check out the ‘Canadian Couch Potato’ portfolio. And even if you are in your 40’s-50’s you should reconsider your investment options. It’s not too late. I had mutual funds until my 50’s and switched to simple DIY investing about 10+ years ago with far better success.

      • Gert on January 25, 2023 at 4:57 pm

        Canadian couch potato? I’ll check it out with him even though I’m in my 60’s I’m always thinking it’s not too late since I won’t need the money for at least another 5 years or so…hopefully.
        Thanks David

        • David S on January 25, 2023 at 8:13 pm

          I assume you won’t need to cash out your entire savings at one time, hopefully you’ll be withdrawing funds over a retirement period of 15-25 years. So you can still think long-term investing for a portion but ensure you also keep a more conservative cushion of funds (e.g. laddered GIC’s) for the shorter term (2-4 years).

  3. Patty on January 25, 2023 at 10:38 am

    This is awesome, just signed up! This is the nudge I need to get out of my expensive mutual funds. Time to have that “break-up” conversation with my advisor!

    • Robb Engen on January 25, 2023 at 2:15 pm

      Many thanks, Patty – I hope you enjoy it and find it useful!

  4. Monica on January 25, 2023 at 4:27 pm

    Congratulations on completing this! It will be a huge benefit for new investors!

  5. Danica on February 3, 2023 at 7:59 am

    I mentioned ETFs to my financial advisor (who I never hear from unless I call first). She acted like I was holding a gun to my own head. Or maybe her head. Their fees are low (1.36), but I figure if I’m not getting any service, I might as well do the work myself. I’m looking forward to the course.

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