In the News
Parents are often more than willing to help their adult children financially – whether it’s getting ahead with an education, buying a first home, or with financial hardships such as a job loss or business failure.
On the roller coaster ride that is the stock market, many dividend investors are used to a smoother trip. That’s part of the appeal of owning stocks in large, established companies that reward shareholders by regularly distributing a slice of their earnings through dividends.
Calling clients has become even more important for advisors as stock markets whipsaw and businesses struggle under the pressure of the pandemic.
Rona Birenbaum, founder and certified financial planner at Caring for Clients, a fee-for-service financial-planning firm in Toronto, encourages advisors to discuss with clients, especially older ones, how the current market volatility might impact their retirement plans.
Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, life insurance wasn’t necessarily a major concern for Canadians. But the new coronavirus has done a stellar job of showing us just how quickly our financial security can be disrupted.
When I’m thinking to myself, “All right. Who do I need to talk to about money? Who would be a great source of wisdom and calmness and guidance in this time?” I thought I should introduce you to the person who helps me most. I’m going to introduce you to my financial advisor, Rona Birenbaum, who is brilliant.
A big worry when the economy takes a turn is around the ability to maintain your lifestyle and cover expenses. A good first step is to take a look at your expenses and see where you can cut back, since things that seemed like “needs” a few months ago will be pretty clear “wants” today, said O’Leary, who launched an initiative to offer free personal finance consultations for anyone struggling with the economic impact of the pandemic.
According to an Ipsos poll, commissioned by Global News, which shows that while the average person has nearly three months worth of savings, “a significant proportion of Canadians have almost no capacity to pay for their bills without an income.”
Since the big banks announced mortgage deferrals that allow home owners facing financial pressure as a result of the pandemic to skip payments for up to six months, hundreds of thousands of Canadians have scrambled to apply for the program.
David O’Leary, founder and principal at Toronto-based fee-for-service financial planning firm Kind Wealth, wanted to do something constructive as the COVID-19 pandemic began to disrupt people’s lives. So, as businesses closed their doors and layoffs spread across the country, he launched the Coronavirus Relief Effort to offer free personal finance consultations for anyone struggling with the economic impact of the pandemic.
“Obviously, people are concerned and have a lot of fears. And as financial planners and financial advisors, there’s an expertise and a skill set we can bring to the table,” Mr. O’Leary says. “I don’t expect we’ll be able to solve a cash-flow shortage, but we [can offer] words of advice, a non-judgmental ear to listen and a framework to help [people] think about how to make decisions.”
Rona Birenbaum, founder and certified financial planner at Caring for Clients, a fee-for-service financial-planning firm in Toronto, also saw Mr. O’Leary’s call for volunteers and got in touch.