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Old 07-31-12, 11:12 PM
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Default Money tips for Canadian Parents

I put together a list of finance tips for parents-to-be and most of them are geared towards Canadians. Here they are:

- Plan well for your maternity/parental leave. Your income will be reduced to %55 of your regular salary and there's a two-week exemption period. Also, you won't be receiving the EI payments for at least 5-6 weeks, so don't plan to spend that money for necessities like food/rent.

- It might be a good idea to start living on 55% of your current income and put the rest in savings, to get used to living on that amount.

-Do your homework on RESPs. It's a good idea to get a Social Insurance Number for your baby right after the birth and open an account. So, you can put some of the cash gifts towards teh RESPs. And remember, the government matches your contribution by 20%, it's free money for your child's education, so start as soon as possible.

- Re-make your budget to include items like baby's food, clothing as especially personal care (diapers, creams, shampoos).

- Check the government websites to find out which child benefits you qualify for. Some benefits are automatically given to all parents, some you have to apply for and some are only for low-income families. Don't wait until the tax time to see which benefits and tax exemptions you can get.
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