One-fifth of Canadians interested in using saved-up money for home renovations


Insurance Journal: June 25, 2021 – Canadians tired of being locked down and their pocketbooks locked up are eager to spend their saved-up funds from the pandemic and are talking to their advisors about investing in big-ticket items like cottages and major home renovations.

“The first thing to discuss with a client is to find out what is truly motivating the need to spend,” said Norris Walker, a financial advisor at Kabs  & Associates Inc. in Clarington, ON.

“Is this something they’ve always wanted to do and only put aside in the past because of finances, or have they become caught up in the euphoria of COVID restrictions beginning to lift?”

Walker added that it is important to keep the fundamentals in mind, like the amount of enjoyment clients will get from the purchase and whether it will affect their long- and short-term plans.

Big-ticket items can be purchased responsibly

Once carefully evaluated, however, big-ticket items can be responsibly purchased, and financial advisors are there to help. “If there is disposable income and savings beyond the rainy-day fund, and other financial planning components are in place, then I would have no reservations with clients making a big-ticket purchase,” said Jeffrey Graham, a certified financial planner with First Oak Financial  Inc. in Port Moody, B.C.

“Have the conversation with clients to ensure that what you’d like to do is in alignment with the financial plan that you’ve built.”

Greg Pollock, president and CEO of Advocis, said after such a long and uncertain period it would be expected that many individuals and families would be looking to purchase something that will help them bounce back from the stress of COVID-19.

“Working with their advisor can help to ensure that it won’t result in even more stress down the road.”