How to Balance Debt Plans and Digital WalletsDec 19, 2016
Chances are good that many Salmon Arm residents are busy trying to save for retirement — almost one-quarter of the city’s population is between 50 and 64 years old. Unfortunately, this isn’t always an easy task — the push and pull of spending and saving can become overwhelming. With more Canadians living with debt and existing paycheque to paycheque, it’s become more difficult to save for retirement and stick to debt plans.
In Salmon Arm and the rest of British Columbia, these debt struggles are even more pronounced. Recently, the Canadian Payroll Association (CPA) polled employees across from Canada, and the statistics in B.C. are startling. Fifty-three per cent said it would be difficult to meet their financial obligations if their paycheques were delayed just one week. More troubling, 27 per cent said they couldn’t come up with just $2,000 if a financial emergency came up in their lives.
This “hand to mouth” lifestyle means Canadians are delaying leaving the workforce, as the survey found 76 per cent of respondents had less than a quarter of what they feel they’ll need to live comfortably in retirement. The average target retirement age in the survey was 62, up from 60 just five years ago.
With saving becoming more difficult, spending has become easier. This all comes at a time when spending is plainly much easier. Online stores are just a click away. Credit cards make payments with just a tap and a beep, and smartphones can do the same.
Young Canadians are adopting this digital technology the fastest, but seniors and members of the “Silent Generation” are catching on too, with many acknowledging that digital methods are easier and more efficient. With this ease of use, new technologies can make spending more tempting and make it easier to lose track of purchases.
It’s important for working Canadians to keep debt plans and retirement savings at the forefront of your mind. If you’re on board with digital payment methods like Apple Pay or tap-enabled credit cards, the first step is to adjust the way you track your spending and monitor your budget. This can be done digitally too, with financial apps like Mint and Wally. These apps securely take your bank account and credit cards, allowing you to create a budget, see your spending habits, and adjust on the fly. If you can find opportunities to trim back, that’s great. Treat your budget like a living being – changing and growing over time. This way, if you find that your cutbacks have led to savings, you can direct this towards debt repayment or retirement savings.
You can also visit with a Licensed Insolvency Trustee (LIT) if you’re struggling with debt. An LIT can provide debt advice on a range of solutions including consolidation loans, debt management plans, credit counselling, consumer proposal and bankruptcy.
Getting this debt counselling in Salmon Arm is a stepping stone to debt freedom, and the ability to put more of your income towards retirement. While spending may be more tempting with all the new technologies available to us, it’s still crucial to keep an old school budget and stick to your retirement “game plans.”
Having a hard time saving for retirement? Finding yourself tempted by the new ways to spend? Join the conversation on social media by using the hashtag #BDOdebtrelief.