Skip to main content
The Globe and Mail
Support Quality Journalism
The Globe and Mail
First Access to Latest
Investment News
Collection of curated
e-books and guides
Inform your decisions via
Globe Investor Tools
Just$1.99
per week
for first 24 weeks

Enjoy unlimited digital access
Enjoy Unlimited Digital Access
Get full access to globeandmail.com
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
var select={root:".js-sub-pencil",control:".js-sub-pencil-control",open:"o-sub-pencil--open",closed:"o-sub-pencil--closed"},dom={},allowExpand=!0;function pencilInit(o){var e=arguments.length>1&&void 0!==arguments[1]&&arguments[1];select.root=o,dom.root=document.querySelector(select.root),dom.root&&(dom.control=document.querySelector(select.control),dom.control.addEventListener("click",onToggleClicked),setPanelState(e),window.addEventListener("scroll",onWindowScroll),dom.root.removeAttribute("hidden"))}function isPanelOpen(){return dom.root.classList.contains(select.open)}function setPanelState(o){dom.root.classList[o?"add":"remove"](select.open),dom.root.classList[o?"remove":"add"](select.closed),dom.control.setAttribute("aria-expanded",o)}function onToggleClicked(){var l=!isPanelOpen();setPanelState(l)}function onWindowScroll(){window.requestAnimationFrame(function() {var l=isPanelOpen(),n=0===(document.body.scrollTop||document.documentElement.scrollTop);n||l||!allowExpand?n&&l&&(allowExpand=!0,setPanelState(!1)):(allowExpand=!1,setPanelState(!0))});}pencilInit(".js-sub-pencil",!1); // via darwin-bg var slideIndex = 0; carousel(); function carousel() { var i; var x = document.getElementsByClassName("subs_valueprop"); for (i = 0; i < x.length; i++) { x[i].style.display = "none"; } slideIndex++; if (slideIndex> x.length) { slideIndex = 1; } x[slideIndex - 1].style.display = "block"; setTimeout(carousel, 2500); }

November is Financial Literacy Month, which means lots of talk about what people need to know about money. I’d rather show you than tell you.

Over the past few years, the Globe and Mail graphics team and I have collaborated on a series of online financial tools to help our readers work through life’s biggest financial moments. To mark FinLit Month, we’ve gathered them together into one convenient package called Calculate Your Life.

Our calculators and worksheets cover home buying, setting financial goals as a recent graduate, building a tax-free savings account, finding a good financial adviser and retirement planning. These tools reflect some of the things I’ve learned about people and money in my 21 years as Globe personal-finance columnist (my first column was published on Oct. 22, 1998).

Story continues below advertisement

For example, I’ve seen how people struggle to figure out how much house they can afford. That’s why the Real Life Ratio calculator attacks affordability in a different way than you’ll find on the typical bank website.

Speaking of banks, you’ll probably hear from them and other financial firms during FinLit Month. They’re trying to be good citizens in the personal-finance universe, but you have to remember that their main goal is to sell financial products. Always be mindful of the potential conflicts when a person or company provides you with advice on money while also trying to sell you mortgages, lines of credit, mutual funds, investment advice and more.

Give our Calculate Your Life tools a try and then let me know if there are any other calculators or worksheets you’d like to see. For us, it’s always Financial Literacy Month.

Subscribe to Carrick on Money

Are you reading this newsletter on the web or did someone forward the e-mail version to you? If so, you can sign up for Carrick on Money here.

Rob’s personal finance reading list…

Using travel reward points for all-inclusive vacations

Story continues below advertisement

The RewardsCanada website reports that while most people think of flights and hotels when using their loyalty points, all-inclusive vacations are also an option. Several cards are mentioned as being best for all-inclusive vacationers.

It’s not easy being green

An accounting of the costs a low-income family faces as it tries to make environmentally conscious spending choices on food and more.

The shaming of shoppers

In Sweden, home of the young activist Greta Thunberg, concern about climate change has led to the creation of new ways to shame people for behavior that negatively affects the environment. One is “flygskam,” or flight shaming, while another is “kopscam,” which casts a negative light on consumerism. Could concern about climate change help address the problem some people have with overspending?

In case you need extra reasons not to text and drive

Story continues below advertisement

A financial website looks into how someone’s car insurance premiums might jump if they were charged with distracted driving. It’s bad.

Ask Rob

Q: What should my newlywed son and his wife invest their wedding gifts cash in, inside their TFSA accounts? They will likely want it in less than five years to buy a house.

A: No doubts here – a high-interest savings account is best for safety while providing a modest return that is just ahead of inflation. Right now, rates in these accounts are as high as 2.3 to 2.8 per cent.

Do you have a question for me? Send it my way. Sorry I can’t answer every one personally. Questions and answers are edited for length and clarity.

Today’s financial tool

Story continues below advertisement

A thorough rundown on credit scores – what they mean and how they’re calculated.

In case you missed these Globe and Mail personal finance-related stories

More Carrick and money coverage For more money stories, follow me on Instagram and Twitter, and join the discussion on my Facebook page. Millennial readers, join our Gen Y Money Facebook group. Send us an e-mail to let us know what you think of my newsletter. Want to subscribe? Click here to sign up.

Report an error Editorial code of conduct
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies