Moving to a new country can be overwhelming but starting your finances off right can make all the difference as you build your new life.
As you begin your new life in Canada, here are three tips can get you headed in the right direction.
- Connect with resources that can help your family get settled.
There can be so much to do when you arrive in Canada—find a home, a job, schools, a bank—it can be hard to know where to start.
Scotiabank’s Newcomer Handbook gives you quick and easy access to things you need to know as you build a new life here. It’s available for free online and includes advice on:
- 10 Things You Need to Know About Banking in Canada
- Top 10 Tips for Settling in More Easily
- Government Information and Assistance
- Jobs and Careers
- Health, Safety and Your Rights
- Education and Training
- Embassies in Canada
After friends and family, a good place to begin when looking for a job is the Service Canada website as well as online job boards. If you need Canadian work experience, consider volunteering in your community.
The federal government also offers other newcomer support, to help get a language assessment and finding a language class, finding a place to live, signing up kids for school and learning about community services.
Your province is responsible for providing services like health care. All Canadian citizens and permanent residents are eligible for public health insurance, which provides most services free of charge (health care in Canada is paid for through taxes). Information about your province’s health care program is available through the government of Canada website.
- Learn how to manage your money.
Building a relationship with a financial advisor at a bank in Canada is an important step in creating your new life. Start by visiting your local branch to open chequing and savings accounts and consider applying for a credit card. Your advisor can help you understand your needs and suggest the products that are right for you and your family. Check out the popular credit cards that the Scotiabank StartRightprogram has to offer. With more rewards than any other bank, you’ll be sure to find a card that meets your needs and rewards you in the process.
A credit card not only lets you charge purchases rather than pay cash, it also helps you establish a credit history in Canada. This will be crucial when you need to get a loan to start a business or buy a home. Banks learn a lot about your financial health by accessing your credit history and use it to decide whether they should lend you money.
More important information about credit history:
- It’s your responsibility to review your credit report and ensure it doesn’t contain any errors
- Try to pay your bills on time and in full to avoid a negative rating
- Make sure you understand the terms and conditions
- Never go over your credit limit
- Make sure to contact local credit agencies if you need help managing debt
- Plan for your future.
Before long, you’ll find that you and your family have settled into your new life in Canada and will start thinking about buying a home or car, putting money aside for your children’s education and investing for your retirement. Having a financial plan is an important element to help you take control of your finances.
One of the first things you can do is evaluate your day-to-day cash flow and think about spending only on things you really need or value. Cutting a few dollars here and there from your daily expenses, even if it’s just $5 a day, can add up to big savings year over year. Where can you start? Cut out your daily luxury coffee, bottles of water, or lunch out once a week. If you saved and invested that daily $5, in 20 years you would have more than $50,000!1
A “Mapping Tomorrow” session with a Scotiabank advisor will go a long way in helping you achieve your unique goals in Canada. Want to learn more? Our expert advisors can offer practical advice and smart solutions to help you have the life you want in Canada.
Source: by Scotiabank Learn more about Scotiabank’s StartRight Program.