One-size doesn’t fit all when it comes to investing, so it’s important that your plan be custom-fitted to you, says Courtenay financial advisor Stu Tunheim.

One-size doesn’t fit all when it comes to investing, so it’s important that your plan be custom-fitted to you, says Courtenay financial advisor Stu Tunheim.

One size doesn’t fit all: Why retirement planning begins with a custom fitting

RRSPs? TFSAs? The right choice depends on you!

We know that for many people, Registered Retirement Savings Plans – RRSPs – are a smart investing tool to save for retirement while also offering tax benefits today.

But because one-size never fits all when it comes to investing, it’s important that your plan be custom-fitted to you and regularly reviewed to incorporate changes like promotions, marriage, home purchases and children.

Part of that assessment will include whether investing in an RRSP will provide you best bang for your buck, or whether another option, such as a Tax-Free Savings Account, is a better fit for now, explains Stu Tunheim, a Consultant with IG Wealth Management in Courtenay.

First, it pays to understand just how an RRSP works. By putting money into an RRSP, either in regular payments throughout the year or in lump sum deposits, you’re building retirement savings to be accessed later. In addition to providing for retirement income, the funds can also be used for a first-time home purchase or post-secondary education down the road.

Additionally, RRSP contributions also qualify for a tax deduction come income tax time – an added benefit that lets you see real benefits today.

However, because the tax benefits rise with your income level, someone earning less – say someone just embarking on their career – might find greater benefits in other investment vehicles, such as a TFSA. Not only does it allow more flexibility in that you can remove funds without penalty, but you always have the option of moving it into an RRSP once you’re earning more, letting you maximize those tax benefits, Tunheim explains.

“There’s no cookie-cutter solution for investment planning, but what is true is that it’s a good idea to diversify your retirement planning through RRSPs, but also options like TFSAs, a personal corporation for those with a high enough income and life insurance,” he says.

“The whole idea is to have several avenues for investing in a way that also lets you maximize the tax benefits.”

“What should I invest in?” is another common Tunheim receives as people assess their options.

“The right investment for you is the one that matches your tolerance for risk and your time horizon, but regardless of where you are in your investment plan, there is something for you,” Tunheim says.

And remember that it’s never too late – or too early – to start your retirement planning.

READ MORE: Why ‘mortgage insurance’ may NOT be best option


Courtenay’s IG Wealth Management team is working remotely, but you can reach Stu on his cell at 250-218-6693 to set up a call or a video conference. You can also email him at and find other investment tips on Facebook or on IG Wealth Management’s Twitter page.

Investors Group Financial Services Inc.

Insurance products and services distributed through I.G. Insurance Services Inc. Insurance license sponsored by The Canada Life Assurance Company. Trademarks, including IG Wealth Management, are owned by IGM Financial Inc. and licensed to its subsidiary corporations. This is a general source of information only. It is not intended to provide personalized tax, legal or investment advice, and is not intended as a solicitation to purchase securities. Stu Tunheim is solely responsible for its content. For more information on this topic or any other financial matter, please contact an IG Wealth Management Consultant.

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