It has been over a year since I launched this blog, and I promise this is the last kick at that can. Sure I made it through a year without my wife sending me back to work, big deal. 🙂 And speaking of kicking at cans I did write two articles on that one year anniversary.
On LinkedIn here’s an article that looks at my year of meandering (at times) and learning opportunities, My One Year New Business Anniversary: Life’s Greatest Lessons Are Mistakes.
And on this site, with more of a positive take on things, Cut The Crap Investing – One Year Later.
An anniversary will make us look back and reflect. I went through all of my 113 blog posts and feel that these are the most important posts of the year. While this site is largely about breaking away from crippling high fee mutual funds and moving to one of the many sensible lower fee options that are available, getting your financial house in order starts in the kitchen – perhaps sitting down at the kitchen table looking at your bills and credit card and banking statements to see where your money is going.
Positive cash flow.
You have to be in a positive cash flow situation. You have to have money to invest. And of course step one will be to first pay down any high interest debt.
On the cash flow front I offered Oh Look, I Just Found $888,000 In Your Coffee. Many will write that to cut that Starbucks and Tim’s coffee habit is not the path to financial freedom. I beg to differ. It can start with coffee and move onto other spending habits. Of course we’ll also look at our fixed costs such as the rent or mortgage payments, our vehicles, smart phones and devices and data plans and more. It’s not that difficult to find a few hundred dollars or perhaps several hundred dollars a month that could then be used to pay down debts and invest.
Beat The Bank
It was a fortunate coincidence that Larry Bates published a book that frames the mission. And Larry released that book close to the start date for this site. In fact I had lunch with Larry on the day of his official book release. That lead to my first book review.
Here’s a post that describes that shared mission and how even a site name and book title can ‘go together’. Cut The Crap Investing and Beat The Bank.
One completes the other.
And here’s the review that continues to send hundreds of readers to Larry’s site, and hopefully to the bookstore, Don’t Give Away Half of Your Investment Wealth – Beat The Bank.
Retirement Income Book Reviews
I had the request from a few readers to write on retirement investment options and strategies for self directed investors. These book reviews did a lot of the heavy lifting on that front.
And Pensionize Your Nest Egg With Annuities, Your Super Bonds.
I’ll admit to having been an ‘annuity-sceptic’, but that book and the research conducted to write that review certainly opened my eyes to the potential benefits of annuities within the complete retirement portfolio funding mix. I was more than enthused to receive a comment from a reader that the posts and reviews had made them open to looking at annuities. That reader discovered the benefits for their situation and now annuities are part or their retirement funding plans.
And on the ETFs for retirement front I offered Investing in the One Ticket Asset Allocation Portfolios to Create Retirement Income. Yes, simple low fee balanced ETF portfolio models can work in retirement.
And for those who create their own ETF model portfolios here’s The Simple 7-ETF Portfolio for Retirees. As I often write, retirement funding is more than tricky business. If there is ever a time to seek out that fee-for-service advisor it’s as we enter or approach retirement. There is great value in advice at the right price.
Those One Ticket Portfolio Game Changers
I had penned on the Vanguard offerings with Which Vanguard All-In-One, One Ticket Portfolio Should You Invest In? That post helps with some risk assessment ideas and links. And BMO joined in with their own Asset Allocation Portfolios, here’s BMO Keeps It Simple With Their One Ticket Portfolio Solutions.
These offerings allow investors to access well-diversified, managed and rebalanced portfolios at various risk levels with fees in the area of .20% – .25%. Game changers indeed.
And of course a significant focus for this site is the Canadian Robo Advisors. They are a wonderful solution for those who do not require extensive advice. That said, some of the Canadian Robo Advisors do offer a surprising level of advice and planning. That’s why it is important to ‘know your Robo’.
These investment firms are also a game changer for Canadian investors and advisors.
Thanks for reading. Thanks for your suggestions. I’d ask that you leave a comment as to the topics that you’d like to see covered in Year two.
Or you can send a note to me, Dale, firstname.lastname@example.org