After being on our financial independence journey for close to 10 years, I have come across some excellent personal finance & investment products, tools, books, and services. Products mentioned below are things that we personally use regularly and some I have come to love.
Disclaimer: Some of these are affiliate links. I may get a small commission if you sign up through these links. If you do, I thank you in advance as they help keep this blog running.
Awesome Personal Finance, Financial Independence, and Mindfulness Books
- The Intelligent Investor by Benjamin Graham
- The Little Book of Common Sense Investing by John Bogle
- Your Money Your Life by Vicki Robin
- The Behaviour Gap by Carl Richards
- The Year of Less by Cait Flanders
- The Psychology of Money by Morgan Housel
- The Single Best Investment: Creating Wealth with Dividend Growth by Lowell Miller
- Millionaire Teacher by Andrew Hallam
- Financial Freedom by Grant Sabatier
- Work Optional by Tanja Hester
- Wealthing Like Rabbits by Robert R Brown
- The Money Master by Sandy Yong
- EQ Bank Savings Plus Account: EQ Bank has consistently offered some of the highest rates. Their high-interest savings account offers 2.00%* everyday interest with the flexibility of a chequing account. It’s a great product if you aren’t relying on a physical branch. *Interest is calculated on the total closing balance and paid monthly. Rates are per annum and subject to change without notice.
- Tangerine Banking: One of the best Canadian online banks. Open a Tangerine account with my Orange Key 17330615S1 and get a $50 bonus!
- Questrade DIY Investing: I have been using Questrade for many years and I think it’s one of the best discount brokers in Canada. The trade commission of $4.95 per trade is the lowest in Canada (Wealthsimple Trade has zero commissions but only for select accounts). Questrade also offers commission-free ETF trades, which is great when you are building a portfolio with low-cost ETFs. Use my referral link to unlock cash bonus, up to $250, depending on the amount you deposit.
- Wealthsimple Trade: Wealthsimple Trade is a great option if you’re looking into ways to do free commission trades. Right now you can only trade on their mobile apps but they’re working on a desktop app (note: the referral code is from my wife’s account). For more detailed analysis, check out my Questrade vs. Wealthsimple Trade review.
- Dividend Tracking Google Spreadsheet: This is a spreadsheet I created using Google Spreadsheet to allow you to easily track your dividend portfolio and other important dividend info like price, yield, dividend amount, etc.
- ETF Tracking Google Spreadsheet: This is another spreadsheet I created that helps you to track and re-balance your ETF portfolio.
- Wealthica: This is a great tool for tracking your investments and net worth. This is like the Canadian version of Personal Capital. Or if you’re familiar with Mint, Wealthica is like Mint but tracks your investments instead. It is compatible with over 100 Canadian financial institutions. Best of all, it’s free.
- Passiv: Passiv is a really cool tool for automate and simplify your portfolio re-balancing. What I like about Passiv is it can maintain your portfolio’s target allocation automatically. Passiv also can save you time by calculating & executing the trades needed to keep your portfolio balance. Best thing about Passiv is that if you’re a Questrade client, you get their Elite member access ($99/year) for free!
Credit Cards/Travel Hacking/Saving Money
- Borrowell Credit Check: If you want to get into travel hacking like we did and save over $10,000 for a trip to Maui, you need to check your credit score regularly to make sure you’re in good standing before applying for more credit cards. Contrary to popular belief, checking your credit score doesn’t lower your credit score. It’s also a good idea to track your credit score regularly to ensure no identity theft. Borrowell is a great place where you can check your credit score for free.
- American Express Marriott Bonvoy Personal Card: Thanks to American Express Marriott Bonvoy Personal Card, we have been able to go on multiple trips and staying at fancy hotels for free. You can earn 51,000 Bonvoy points by spending $3,000 the first three months. That’s enough points for 5 nights at a Marriott Category 2 hotel.
- Scotiabank Passport Infinite Visa: Scotiabank Passport Infinite Visa provides a lot of great benefits. By signing up, you can earn up to 35,000 bonus Scotia Rewards points which is equivalent of $350 towards travel. By holding this card, you get Complimentary Airport Lounge Access, plus 6 free lounge visits per year.
- PC Insiders Program: We have been shopping at Superstore and other Loblaws stores regularly for groceries. Given that we purchase organic produce and use PC Express for online grocery pickup, the PC Insiders Program was a great way for us to earn more PC Optimum Points. After one year of being a PC Insider, we have earned an equivalent of $478, making the $119 per year PC Insiders Program an excellent program to sign up for. Use my referral code BL1611 to get 25,000 PC Optimum Points for free (an equivalent of $25).
- Baby Freebies and Free Baby Samples in Canada: Having a baby can be expensive. Luckily many companies offer free baby samples to Canadians. All you need to do is to fill out some forms.
- Public Mobile – Since my work pays for my cell phone, we needed to find a good cell provider for Mrs. T. Years ago, Mrs. T used Freedom Mobile (now Shaw) but found the coverage to be quite spotty. She switched over to Rogers on a discounted talk & text plan for $29 per month. After going through her cell usage history, I determined that Public Mobile’s $15 plan was good enough for her. Since Public Mobile uses Telus’ network, we don’t need to worry about coverage issues.
- PolicyMe: Having the proper life insurance to cover you and your family is very important. If the unthinkable were to happen, you want to make sure your surviving family members are taking care of. This is why Mrs. T and I both have a 25-year term life insurance.
If you have found other useful products or services, please let me know.