We’ve got great things in store…
At Oaken we’re all about personalized, friendly service, and we’re always looking for ways to make good on that promise. That’s why we’re delighted to announce the opening of our first Oaken store, in the heart of Toronto’s financial district.
The store will be completely different from that of any typical bank branch, replacing a teller-based environment with one that is dedicated to discussion and collaboration. It’s a place where you can come in, have a coffee and chat with us about anything related to your savings. Simply put, our mission for the store is to educate, inspire and engage.
It’s also a dual-purpose space that we’re making available for fundraising events outside of business hours—our way of giving back to the community. So if you have a related need, just get in touch and we’ll be happy to discuss it with you.
Special sneak peek event
The store will be opening to the public on Monday, May 11, but for Oaken customers we’re preparing a special sneak peek event on Thursday, May 7. If you’re an Oaken customer, we’d love you to join us for an exclusive preview and reception, where refreshments will be served and all the great features of the store will be showcased. Oaken customers in the Greater Toronto Area will be receiving an invitation by email and regular post, so look out for that if it hasn’t arrived already.
We’re also opening a second store in Calgary this summer. While we haven’t finalized a date for this yet, the work is already well underway, so we’ll be letting you know nearer to the time. Stay tuned for more details in the coming months.
The Federal Budget—good news for Canadian savers
The federal budget was brought down on April 21, and it contained some of the biggest changes we’ve seen in years, especially when it comes to savings and retirement. We’ll go into them in more detail in future Oaken Updates, but for now here are the two main changes you need to know about:
1. You can keep more money in your RIF
Under previous rules, seniors had to withdraw a minimum of 7.38% of their RIF in its first year, with the percentage gradually rising in subsequent years. Now the initial withdrawal required is 5.28%. This means that seniors will find it easier to preserve their capital into old age, as they will potentially face a lower tax bill than they did previously. The greatest benefit will be felt by those retirees who have fairly large RIFs, as they are the ones who are most likely to be able to live on the minimum withdrawal amount. The upshot is clear: there is now an even stronger reason to build up your RSP, as it will benefit from longer tax-sheltering than ever before.
2. You can invest more money in your TFSA
Effective immediately, TFSA contribution limits have been increased to $10,000 annually. This means that you have an additional $4,500 of contribution room for 2015, and starting in 2016 you can contribute $10,000 a year. This is a great windfall for savers, as you can now shelter more of your interest, dividends and capital gains from taxation. We have always encouraged customers to view their TFSA as more than just a vehicle for short-term savings, and this change only reinforces that view. The TFSA is increasingly becoming an important part of long-term investment and retirement planning.
And the winner is…
Spring was definitely in the air at the Vancouver ZoomerShow in March! Held at Canada Place on the waterfront, the show was a great weekend full of fun, music and lifestyle information. We were delighted to welcome so many people to our booth—both old faces and new—and provide information and advice on what Oaken has to offer.
Of course, the ZoomerShow wouldn’t be complete without our regular Oaken prize draw. Our winner this time was (Tiffany) Swee Chen Tang from Vancouver, BC, and she is now the lucky holder of a $500 GIC from Oaken—congratulations!
Our next ZoomerShow will be at the Ottawa Convention Centre on May 9 & 10. If you’ll be in or around our nation’s capital that weekend, we’d love to see you there. To get your free tickets to the show, click here.
Spring is the time to grow your finances (or just your garden)
Our recommended readings this month are all about growth: from a Spring tune up for your finances, to investing in GICs online, to planting for growth in the summer.
- A great set of simple tips for planning a bit more and spending a bit less.
- A step-by-step guide to investing in Oaken GICs online from a financial blogger (and satisfied customer).
- A top gardener with tips on a different type of planting for the future (with a little inspiration from The Wealthy Barber).