Refresh Financial Official Blog

How Your Credit Score Is Affected By Other People’s Bills In Your Name

How Your Credit Score Is Affected By Other People’s Bills In Your Name It’s one thing to stay on top of your own bills and make sure your payments are all made on time. It’s a whole other thing to be doing that for someone else. Sometimes we find ourselves in that situation nonetheless, when […]...more

Tips For Settling Financial Disputes With Your Spouse

Tips For Settling Financial Disputes With Your Spouse Few things get our blood boiling faster than money stress. Arguments between spouses tend to either be about money or fueled by money stress more often than not. Nothing is worse than sharing your finances with someone you feel like you can’t talk to or who doesn’t […]...more

Didn’t File Your Taxes? What You Need To Know About Filing Late

Didn’t File Your Taxes? What You Need To Know About Filing Late Everyone forgets things every now and again. Sometimes, we get so busy and caught up with day to day life that we even forget the really important things. When you forget to file your taxes, you can’t help but feel a bit of […]...more

8 Signs You’ve Been A Victim of Identity Fraud

8 Signs You’ve Been A Victim of Identity Fraud No one ever wants to experience identity fraud. It’s like a stain you just can’t seem to get out. It means hours on hold, lots of explaining and dragging out records. It’s time consuming, stressful and scary because you really don’t know how far the theft […]...more

The Pros and Cons of Borrowing From Loved Ones

The Pros and Cons of Borrowing From Loved Ones We’ve all been in a tight bind before. The sort of bind that leaves us with nowhere to turn but our loved ones for financial help. There aren’t many of us who haven’t borrowed from family or lent to friends. If you find yourself in this […]...more

5 Lessons From The Sears Severance-Free Layoffs

5 Lessons From The Sears Severance-Free Layoffs In June, Sears Canada announced it would be filing for creditor protection. As part of the company’s court-supervised restructuring, Sears has been forced to let 2,900 members of its staff go across Canada. The worst part is that because they are have filed for creditor protection, which protects […]...more

Rapid Decline In Toronto: Is The Real Estate Bubble Bursting?

Rapid Decline In Toronto: Is The Real Estate Bubble Bursting? There is no doubt home sales have slowed significantly in Toronto over the past few months. Some say it’s because homeowners are rushing to get the big bucks for their properties before a dreaded crash. Others say it has something to do with new regulations […]...more

The Pros and Cons Of Digital Vs. Traditional Banks

You’ve probably seen the ads for banks like Tangerine and PC Financial. They boast about their low-fee or no-fee chequing accounts and entice with higher interest rates on savings accounts but are they all they are cracked up to be? Are there any downsides to banking with these virtual banks? The answer entirely depends on […]...more

5 Things That Could Prevent Your First Home Purchase That You May Not Know

5 Things That Could Prevent Your First Home Purchase That You May Not Know You’ve saved up a down payment and you’re ready to go talk to a real estate agent… you are officially in the market to buy your first home. While there are many things to think about when making your first home […]...more

Young People Are Drawn To Two Types Of Credit More Than Others

Young People Are Drawn To Two Types Of Credit More Than Others The average consumer debt of Canadians is rising and we now owe a massive $22,000 on average, not including our mortgages. Young Canadians are taking on more debt than older Canadians and it’s not all credit card debt. In fact, it’s not even […]...more

My Personal Loan Was Declined: When Can I Apply Again?

What should you do if your personal loan was declined? You don’t want to keep applying away in the hopes of getting it eventually. ...more

How To Get Approved For A Car Loan

You’ve probably seen the ads on television or popping up in your social media feed promising great car loans for people with bad credit....more

7 Reasons To Put Off Buying Your First Home

You’re tired of renting, we get it. You’re thinking about biting the bullet and buying your first home, but is it the right time?...more

Priorities: What To Do With Your Money First

As long as there has been money, there have been money gurus. There have also been those who’ve created wealth from seemingly nothing....more

Collateral and Conventional Mortgages: What Are The Differences?

Buying a house, especially your first, can be a scary and exciting time. It’s almost like a crash course in finance and lending....more

8 Tips For Getting The Most When Selling Your Old Car

So you’ve decided to sell your old clunker. That’s a great idea! Especially if you’re doing it to pay down your debts....more

House Sales On The Rise Again In British Columbia – Here’s Why

From April to May 2017, the number of house sales in the Greater Vancouver Regional District climbed to a whopping 22.8%. In just one month!...more

Android and Apple Pay – Pros and Cons

Recently, it was announced that Android users can now use Android Pay (like Apple Pay) in Canada....more

Do Mortgage Helpers (Legal Suites) Count With The New Stress Test?

Mortgage helpers are legal suites in your home that you can rent out, bringing in extra income to help pay your mortgage....more

Buyer’s Market? Why There’s Been A Sudden Influx of Properties For Sale In Toronto

What’s caused the sudden change in the real estate market? Why the sudden jump in numbers of properties for sale in Toronto?...more

Should They Stay or Should They Go: When Should Your Children Become Financially Independent?

Kids are expensive. Adult kids are even more expensive. When should they fly the coop and become financially independent?...more

Canada’s Astronomical Housing Prices: Could a Bubble Burst Be In The Future?

This current state of affairs in Canada makes you wonder – what would happen if interest rates rose? Enter the housing bubble burst....more

Identity Theft: A Step by Step Guide To Getting Your Identity Back

So you’ve taken our advice and obtained your credit report. You’ve skimmed through it and noticed some odd things you don’t recognize....more

Just Married? How To Manage Your Finances After The Big Day

With the vacation bliss at an end, it’s the perfect time to sit down and look at the new marriage and money situation you and your spouse are working with....more

For Half Of Canadians, Just $200 Is The Difference Between Paying Bills And Not

How much money do you have left over each month after paying bills and meeting your expenses? A few hundred dollars?...more

Mortgage Brokers: What Are The Pros And Cons

Mortgage brokers always seem to have their fingers on the pulse of the housing market. They’re connected with more lenders than you even knew existed....more

Red Hot Real Estate: Ontario’s New Measures To Curb Rising Housing Market

Ontario’s housing market is out of control, much like South Western British Columbia. Even renting in Canada’s major cities is unaffordable for the vast majority of us....more

Financing a Car: Does The Size Of Your Down Payment Matter?

If you’re looking to finance a car, and you’re working hard to save your down payment, you might be wondering just how long you should keep saving. ...more

12 Tips For Talking About Money With Your Spouse

Money is stressful. Even talking about money can bring a heightened state of irritability....more

Hooked on Online Shopping? Beware These Common Scams

Shopping online is easy. With the click of a button, you can have anything you need, delivered right to your door in just a few days....more

Ontario Piloting Financial Literacy Program In High Schools

Most of us grew up without much of a financial education. We graduated high school barely knowing how to cash a cheque....more

Choosing a Mortgage – The One Big Mistake You Should Avoid

We are creatures of habit and we all like to turn to the same familiar faces when we need something, including banking....more

12 Income Boosters With Skills You Already Have

One of the best ways to boost your credit score, is to find income boosters and pay down your debts faster with the money you earn....more

Why Millennial Homeowners Are Feeling Regret

Angus Reid recently conducted a survey for CIBC where they reached out to millennial homeowners to find out what their attitudes were towards their home purchase. Their answers might surprise you....more

The Top 10 Reasons Why You Need An Emergency Fund

Most financial gurus these days are going to tell you that there are two first steps to financial security: pay down your debts and save an emergency fund....more

Credit Unions Vs. Banks – What Are The Differences?

If you’ve been banking for years with one of Canada’s big banks, you might wonder what you’re missing because you’re not at a credit union and vice versa....more

Tax Tips: How To Access Lost or Old T4s

It’s always important to get your taxes done each year in time. It’s not always what happens, but it’s important, nonetheless....more

The Top 10 Causes of Debt in Canada

On average, Canadians have over $20,000 in consumer debt. That means that most of us here, reading this, are in debt in some way or another....more

New or Used Car: Which Is The Best Option Financially?

If you’re in the market for a car, you’ve probably found yourself wondering the same question we all do: which is better? A new car or a used car?...more

Should You Let Your Teens Have a Job? The Pros and Cons of Working Teens

The older kids get, the more expensive their tastes seem to be. And it seems like every time you turn around, they’re asking for something else....more

To Marry or Not To Marry – The Financial Difference Between Common Law & Legal Marriage

As more and more Canadians opt out of marriage, you have to wonder, are they putting themselves at a financial disadvantage by staying common law?...more

Apple Wallet – Why You Don’t Need To Carry All Those Points Cards Around Anymore

Being members of loyalty points clubs means you probably have a fat wallet bursting at the seams with club cards, right? You don’t have to, though!...more

High Pressure Banking – Things You Should Know

It’s important to note that this isn’t necessarily how things operate across all bank branches in Canada. But just in case, here’s how you protect yourself....more

Bidding Wars: Why Buying A Home In Canada Is Becoming Harder and Harder

That’s right, Canucks… the Canadian housing market just doesn’t seem to be getting any easier to navigate for first-time buyers....more

How Much Should You Save For Emergencies? Factors To Consider

By now, you know that you should be saving an emergency fund. Tucking away a few months worth of expenses is a good practice....more

Gifting A Pre-Paid Credit Card: You Might Be Paying More Than You Realize

Buying a gift is not always the easiest task, especially when you’ve got a really busy schedule and you don’t know the recipient all that well. ...more

The Top 5 Ways To Make Use Of Your Tax Refund

It’s that time of year again when we’re all scrambling to get our taxes done. It’s worth it though when you get that tax refund....more

How To Prepare Financially For Buying a Home

Buying your first home is exciting and rewarding, but it can also be very stressful, especially if you have poor credit and bad money habits....more

What Happens To Your Pay When Your Workplace Goes On Strike

If you are a member of a union, strikes are a thing that can and do happen and you need to know what to expect if a strike happens at your workplace....more

10 Reasons Why You Should Have A Last Will And Testament

Nobody wants to think about their will. It’s morbid and scary to have to face our own mortality. It is, though, an important fact of life....more

Why Your TFSA and RRSP May Not Be Enough For Retirement

It’s not always the easiest thing to focus on saving for retirement with your RRSP when you have so many expenses right now. ...more

11 Things We Forget To Do That Could Change Our Money

We all get busy, wrapped up in the business of day-to-day life. Making dinners, doing laundry. We hardly have any time to sit down and look at our money. ...more

Parents: Make Sure You’re Claiming These Benefits This Tax Year

Being a parent in Canada is expensive. It seems like every time you turn around, there’s another huge expense on the horizon....more

10 Facebook Pages That Every Money-Conscious Canadian Should Like

Facebook can be frustrating. With all those videos, memes and so many ads, it’s difficult to find what truly interests you. And we can hardly disconnect....more

Co-signing: Risks You Should Consider

You’re not likely going to get through life without being approached for some financial help at some point or another. Moms and Dads especially....more

Self-Employed? Here’s What You Can Write-Off On Your Taxes

Self-employment can be pretty tricky at tax time. You have to organize your business expenses and figure out what you can write-off and what you can’t....more

Tips and Tricks To Max Out This Year’s RRSP Contribution

March marks a new year for RRSP contributions, which leaves you little time to max out this year’s additions to your Registered Retirement Savings Plan....more

Kids No Longer Pay For MSP In BC – How Much Will You Save?

While we, as Canadians, take pride in the fact that we have universal healthcare, some of us make the mistake of calling it free health care....more

How To Know When It’s The Right Time To Ask For A Raise

Asking for a raise is a delicate thing. You ask too soon, or for too much and you might send the wrong message....more

So, You’re Finally Debt Free. What To Do Next

It finally happened. You made your last payment on your last debt and you’re debt free! Free to do as you please with a brand new influx of cash....more

Unexpected Cash: What You Should Do With Your Windfall

If you’re lucky enough to have come into a large chunk of money, some unexpected cash, you want to use this to your best advantage. ...more

Canadian Banks Are Raising Fees – How You Can Avoid Them

Scotiabank has announced that it will raise the fees it charges for a few of its products. This is just one instance in the trend of rising banking costs....more

Self-Employment Financial Checklist

Intuit, the financial software giant, has recently reported that they believe 45% of all Canadians will be self-employed by the year 2020....more

7 Reasons To Go Through Your Credit Card Statement Every Month

If you are struggling with debt, you probably find dealing with money fairly stressful. Sometimes, when we find things stressful, we avoid them....more

How The Rise of CMHC Insurance Premiums Affects You

This past week, the third rate hike in the last two years was announced. Once again, Canadians, your CMHC insurance premiums are going up....more

5 Money Subreddits You Should Be Subscribed To

If you don’t know what Reddit is, allow me to present you the birthplace of viral. Reddit is a global forum where users can post content & have it voted on....more

Launch of New Interest-Free Loans in BC

Starting today, BC residents who are first-time homebuyers and have at least half of their down payment saved already, will be eligible for a new program....more

With Money, There is No Such Thing as Luck

Happy Friday the 13th, money savers! Every Friday the 13th, we hear someone mention how unlucky it is....more

Finland Launches Basic Income – Should Canada Follow Suit?

Finland has launched an experimental program to get a real idea of what happens if people receive a Basic Income....more

2017 Canadian Tax Changes: Will You Be Affected?

2017 arrived fast, and with it, the federal and provincial governments are bringing in lots of changes. ...more

Money Trends to Look out for in Canada in 2017

2016 saw many things change for Canadians. Purchasing a home became quite a bit more difficult, foreign investors face new taxes, and interest rates rose....more

11 New Year’s Resolutions For Getting Rid of Debt

If this year has been another struggle capping off many years of the same, you might be fed up and ready for a change. You might be ready to turn it around....more

10 Ways Our Money Changed In 2016

Here’s a quick recap of some of the major changes we saw take place, more than one of which likely affected you personally....more

What To Consider When Choosing A Bank

If you’re working towards a better credit score, getting out of debt and saving money, chances are you’re wondering which financial institution is best....more

One Dozen Must-See Movies About Money

The holidays are here and you’re looking to relax this weekend. You just want to sit back with some eggnog and relax....more

10 Ways Saving Money Can Better Your Life

Saving your money can mean cutting other things down or out of your life and that is never a fun thing to do....more

New Canadian Debt Trends and What They Mean for You

Here’s a surprising fact: the majority of consumers in Canada are now decreasing their debt load, according to a study by the credit bureau, Equifax....more

5 Ways To Make Online Shopping Safer

Some say the best way to avoid all the traffic, the parking lots, and the line-ups during your holiday shopping is to simply shop online....more

Weekend Challenge: Go Credit Free

Black Friday and Cyber Monday are in the past, but most people are now in full holiday shopping mode....more

Student Debt & Rising Housing Costs Robbing Many of Homeownership

While browsing Reddit the other day, I stumbled upon a post where a user had proposed a new millennial version of the popular board game, Monopoly....more

Millennials Drawn To Payday Loans

We’ve talked a lot here on the Refresh Financial blog about the struggles millennials face with credit and borrowing....more

How to Spot Fake News and Bad Advice Online

Today we’re explaining how to figure out whether to trust your source on the internet. This will protect you from following bad advice about your money....more

TD Has Raised its Mortgage Rates – Will Others Follow?

One of Canada’s largest banks, TD, surprised many when it raised its prime lending rate for variable mortgages....more

10 Canadian Tax Credits and Deductions You Might Not Know About

Many of us can take advantage of tax breaks if we keep good records of our spending throughout the year....more

12 Financial Gurus To Follow On Twitter

If you’re an avid Twitter user, chances are it’s where you go to get the latest in everything that interests you. ...more

Payday Loan Regulations Tighten In British Columbia

Right now, in British Columbia, the cost to borrow $100 must not exceed $23. But starting in 2017, that will be lowered to $17. ...more

The Light At The End Of The Tunnel: Why The New Mortgage Rules Could Be A Good Thing

We’ve heard our fair share of the doom and gloom following the new mortgage rules that came into effect in Canada just a couple of weeks ago....more

7 Banking Fees That Might Surprise You

Banks. Some of you winced when you read that, didn’t you? There can be good reason for that....more

Would You Move For A Job? Canada’s Top Job Markets

If you’re struggling to find work where you are, these five cities could be Canada’s best options for you....more

5 Podcasts To Listen To Over the Weekend That Are Good For Your Wealth

Podcasts are huge these days and there is one for every interest, every hobby, every topic. Finance, of course, is no different....more

Why You Might Be Having Trouble Paying With Credit at Walmart

From October the 24th 2016, Manitobans might begin to find it difficult to pay for their Walmart purchases with their Visa cards....more

7 Things to Consider Before Hiring a Financial Planner

You’re finally ready to jump into real financial change. You’ve been reading our blog for a while now, and you’ve implemented some of our tips. ...more

3 Canadian YouTube Channels That Will Change The Way You Look At Money

Some people seem to look at YouTube and see a kid’s toy. It’s nothing but funny cat videos and music; there’s certainly nothing of substance there. ...more

Weekend Reading: 6 Books That Will Make You Richer

Someone who has been there, done that, is going to impart the best tricks of the trade so that maybe one day, you can be as financially secure as they are....more

Canadian Pension Plan Changes: What That Means For You

Just recently, on October 4th, British Columbia confirmed with the federal government that they are on board with building a stronger Canadian Pension Plan. ...more

More Than Half Of Canadians Living On The Brink Of Debt Overload

What would happen if your monthly income dropped by $200? Would you still be able to make ends meet? Would any of your bills go unpaid?...more

Canadian Household Debt at Record High: How This Affects You

There have been many measures taken by governments across Canada to slow the growth of household debt, but it still rose 2% in the second quarter for 2016....more

Federal Government To Take On Credit Card Fees

Two years were given to Visa and Mastercard to prove they had lowered the fees they charge to merchants in Canada....more

Foreign Investment Tax in BC: How It’s Impacted Us So Far

This past August, the British Columbia provincial government implemented a foreign investment tax, adding 15% to the sale of homes in the Greater Vancouver area for foreign nationals. The goal was to force housing prices to drop....more

Debt Success Stories: Cheryl Strayed

Recently, I had the pleasure of sitting down and watching the flick, Wild, with Reese Witherspoon. The movie was written by Cheryl Strayed, who lived it....more

If You’re Buying Your First Home, Make Sure You’re Budgeting for These Fees

Congratulations, first time home buyer! This is a huge step in your life. ...more

Millennials Defaulting on Their Debts at an Alarming Rate

It’s brutally obvious that the cost of living in most parts of Canada is skyrocketing. Homeownership is getting further and...more

Should You Be Saving Money Or Paying Down Your Debts First?

Many of us working class Canadians are finding it difficult to save money and pay down our debts at the same time. ...more

5 Mistakes Parents Make When Giving Their Kids An Allowance

It seems these days that the majority of kids don’t get a regular allowance from their parents. Instead, they seem to just be bought...more

Debt Success Stories: President Barack Obama

Whether you’re an Obama-supporter or not, the man is a polished symbol of self-confidence and achievement....more

How To Start Saving At Any Age – A Step-by-Step Guide

If you’re not a Redditor, you really ought to be. This site has information on just about anything you can imagine, including...more

Is It Possible To Live Without Money Stress?

For some of us, money stress can be a touchy subject. The topic is avoided, and so is monitoring how much money is leaving your hands....more

Alberta Enacts Bill To Protect You From Predatory Lenders

For decades, predatory lenders have taken advantage of the financially desperate, and customer service at payday loan outlets is designed to be confusing....more

Early Retirement and No Mortgage: Yes, It is Possible!

Canadians who strive for homeownership will struggle to reach that goal, and struggle further to maintain it. Is there an alternative...more

11 Easy Steps To Improving Your Finances

Changing your financial situation can seem like an uphill path riddled with obstacles. This tends to discourage people from taking that...more

Debt Success Stories: Cyndi Lauper

You always think of your favourite successful rockstar as always being successful. Although most of them struggled on the way....more

A Step-By-Step Guide For Requesting A Raise

Do you deserve a raise? Have you been loyal, reliable and worked hard at the company you’re with for a long time and seen no increase...more

Debt Success Stories: Walt Disney

If you grew up in the western world, chances are your childhood was shaped and moulded by the visions of Walt Disney....more

Snowball vs. Avalanche Method of Repayment

We’ve all had those moments where we sit down and take stock of our debts and feel overwhelmed. Some of us more often than others....more

Debt-to-Income Ratio: What Is It & How Can You Find Out Yours?

Your ratio is definitely something you should know, especially if you’re looking to be considered by lenders for loans...more

7 Tips For Teaching Your Kids About Money

Most of us have wished at one time or another that we’d been taught more about financial responsibility in our youth....more

Debt Success Stories: ShayCarl

You probably know someone like him. He is a devoted dad, who got married and quickly had three kids, and then found himself over his head in debt....more

Canadian Millennial Unemployment: How We Can Help

Canadian millennials are living under their parents’ roof longer and longer, unable to find jobs. Like any problem though, there...more

The History of Canada’s National Debt

The history of Canada’s national debt. Basically, what happened was that some people got together and decided to change...more

‘The Surprise’ Hits You Right in the Feels

I was at my local movie theatre last night when I saw ‘The Surprise’- a short story/commercial from INTERAC*....more

Here’s What You Do If You Lose Your Wallet While On Vacation

Probably about ten years ago, I lost my wallet while in Mexico. So here’s what you do if you lose your wallet while on vacation....more

Google Says No To Payday Loans and So Should You

Google says no to payday loans and so should you. Google will no longer let these companies advertise with them, because of their predatory nature....more

Four Tips To Know Before You Get Your First Credit Card

Having a credit card might be a concept that seems alluring with its sense of freedom and adulthood, but have you ever looked at the fine details? ...more

Tips for Managing Your Student Debt

So you’ve made it through your degree and now you’re faced with real-world problems. Don’t worry, it happens to the best of us...more

5 Tips for Teaching Your Kids About Money

It might seem like an impossible task to successfully teach your children about money when you’re still struggling to do so as an adult. ...more

Money Myths – Part 5

I always pay my bills on time, and I check my bank account and credit card statements often. I don’t need to check my credit report....more

Money Myths – Part 4

Myth: Holding a credit balance is good for your credit. I actually believed this was true until I did some more research on the topic....more

Money Myths – Part 3

Every day there is new advice on how to manage your finances. From credit score education to consumer proposals, there is a lot of information available....more

Money Myths – Part 2

Every day there is new advice on how to manage your finances. From credit score education to consumer proposals, there is a lot of information available....more

Money Myths – Part 1

Money Myths – Part 1 – How debt can affect anyone, regardless of income....more

Canadian Federal Budget 2015

On April 21 2015, the Conservative government released the 2015 federal budget. ...more

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I've done pay day loans in the past but didn't know a whole lot about credit until recently. So I checked into my credit score. I was very disappointed to find that I had a 0 credit score as I have never had or needed any credit cards or lines of credit. I knew I wanted to buy the house I live in so I knew work was needed, but I never thought it would be as easy as purchasing REFRESH!!! I bought it in June of this year, waited or 2 months and was approved for my first credit card. I was so excited. It gets better!!! Then I waited 5 months, and would you believe it. Only 5 months after purchasing refresh my credit score was strong enough to finally get approved for my first brand new car with no down payment, low biweekly payments, no cosigner, and no car trade in. My bank also tells me if everything stays good I will own my home within a year. After years of thinking there was no hope I am only months away from owning my home. THANKS REFRESH!!!! Please share this story with everyone you can! ”

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