Weekend Reading: A Two-Book Giveaway Edition

Last week I reviewed two personal finance books: Stop Over-Thinking Your Money! by Preet Banerjee, and The Moolala Guide To Rockin’ Your RRSP by Bruce Sellery.  The authors were kind enough to each provide a copy of their book to give away to a lucky Boomer & Echo reader.

We had over 80 entries to the contest and we used a random number generator to choose the winners.

  • Congratulations to Jennifer, whose comment left at 7:43 am last Friday won her a copy of Stop Over-Thinking Your Money!
  • Congratulations to AnnieA, whose comment left at 9:51 am last Friday won her a copy of The Moolala Guide To Rockin’ Your RRSP

I’ll get in touch with both winners today by email and arrange to send over the books.

Monthly Review

It has been a great start to the year so far.  We launched our fee-only financial planning service and have already taken on a few clients.  We’ve recently been added to MoneySense magazine’s directory of fee-only planners.

My advice for folks to switch out of expensive, actively managed mutual funds and into low-cost index funds and ETFs got a response from the head of the mutual fund trade association.  A special thanks to Rob Carrick, who highlighted my response in his daily personal finance round-up, and to FAIR Canada, who agreed with the simple math that cutting fees will increase returns.

Because Money

This week on the Because Money podcast we talked about the simplest way to build a low-cost, broadly diversified portfolio using TD e-series funds.  We also touched on why ETFs haven’t been able to make up much ground on mutual funds when it comes to total assets invested.

Next week we’ll be discussing the merits of the Home Buyers’ Plan and the pros and cons of using your RRSP as a down payment for your first home.

Weekend Reading:

Here are my top 10 personal finance reads from around the web this week:

Dan Bortolotti revealed an interesting way to look at diversification.  He built a periodic table that showed the returns of the seven individual asset classes in the Complete Couch Potato, as well as the returns for the whole portfolio.  The results were surprising.

The Financial Post’s Melissa Leong used a fun video to explain why RRSPs are like social media and as deserving of your attention.

MoneySense shared the five things your mortgage broker isn’t telling you, including the fact that most brokers only negotiate with a handful of lenders – the ones who, you guessed it, pay them the most commission.

Go to Disneyland, or pay bank fees?  That’s the easy choice that Jackson Middleton made as his family embarks on a 52-week money saving challenge.  By consolidating their banking into one no-fee account, the Middleton’s will save over $500 this year.

Many parents are helping their kids buy a home these days and while it’s natural to want to give financial support, Rob Carrick warns of three potential pitfalls to consider before opening your wallet.

Dan is an accountant from Calgary who recently started a new blog called, Our Big Fat Wallet.  He explains the basics of the first-time donor’s super credit, a beefed-up tax credit to encourage Canadians to give more to charity.

Mark Seed from My Own Advisor asks the million-dollar question: how much money do you need to retire well?  He says the magic number is at least a million, maybe more.

A reader asked Mike Piper, of the Oblivious Investor blog, how often he calculates his portfolio’s rate of return.  His answer: never.

A frugal lawyer explains how he reached $1M net-worth by the age of 34 in this post on the Million Dollar Journey blog.

Kyle from Young and Thrifty takes a look at ING Direct – soon to be Tangerine – to see what, if anything, has changed since the online bank was swallowed up by Scotia last year.

Have a great weekend, everyone!

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  1. My Own Advisor on January 31, 2014 at 5:17 am

    Thanks for the mention. You’ve had a very busy month!

    Pricy mutual funds are certainly not investor/customer-focused.

    Take care Robb,

  2. Our Big Fat Wallet on January 31, 2014 at 7:35 am

    Hi Robb, thanks for the mention! Best of luck in your new fee-only planning service, sounds like it is off to a great start 🙂

    Have a good weekend


  3. @kiltedbroker on January 31, 2014 at 12:02 pm

    Hey fella, thanks for including me in your weekly reading, certainly had a lot of fun writing that piece! Have a great weekend!

  4. AnnieA on January 31, 2014 at 2:47 pm

    Thanks so much! As it happens, I am reading the first Moolala book right now. Talk to you later.

    • Robb Engen on February 1, 2014 at 12:03 pm

      Hi AnnieA – I sent you an email but it bounced back as undeliverable. Can you please contact me at info@boomerandecho.com and let me know your mailing address so I can send you the book?


      • AnnieA on February 5, 2014 at 11:13 am

        I sent you an e-mail — did you receive it? Perhaps it ended up in your spam folder…?

        • Echo on February 5, 2014 at 11:22 am

          I got it (Subject: Testing!), but my reply didn’t go through. Do you have a different email you can try?


          • AnnieA on February 6, 2014 at 12:00 pm

            Will send you a quick note on my work address and with my Real Life Name…AA

  5. Money Saving on February 4, 2014 at 11:07 am

    On the article by Rob Carrick, I’ve read in the Millionaire Next Door that this is an extremely bad idea for a whole host of reasons. I hope this gets more exposure as a I know a couple of folks that fall into this category and they are living proof that you shouldn’t pay for your children’s housing once they’re adults!

  6. Len on February 6, 2014 at 10:17 am

    Congrats to the winners. Wasn’t me, so I just brought the two. Looking forward to reading both. Thanks for the review.

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