Tips for Last-Minute RSP Contributions

Manitoba PostLife

WINNIPEG, MB. – For many of us, the deadline for Registered Savings Plan contributions is a source of unwanted stress. But personal finance experts say that the deadline is no reason to be intimidated — even if you haven’t been making regular contributions, you can still make a difference in your retirement plan.

“While it is much better to have a personalized financial plan with regular contributions to an RSP over a longer term, making a last-minute RSP contribution is still a step in the right direction,” explains Wade Stayzer, vice president of sales and service at Meridian, Ontario’s largest credit union. “Additionally, taking the opportunity to set up a preauthorized contribution that allows you to invest smaller amounts on a regular basis will save you a lot of stress in the future.”

Here are some tips for maximizing your last-minute RSP contributions.

Get going now. Many financial institutions will have extended hours to meet the needs of last-minute contributors, but don’t wait until the last minute – make an appointment as soon as possible. You can also consider phone or online banking. No matter how you chose to contribute, you’ll need your account information and social insurance number.

Don’t over-contribute. Due to contribution limits, be sure to only invest your allowable amount, as over-contributions are subject to tax penalties. You can find your current limit on your most recent Notice of Assessment from the Canada Revenue Agency.

Get a short-term plan. Most last-minute contributors park their money for the short-term and then decide later where to invest for the long haul. Working with a trusted financial advisor can help you choose the best option given your circumstances.

Plan ahead. Make next RSP season less stressful and set up a pre-authorized contribution now. While the deadline for contributing to an RSP is the same every year, you might not be able to make your maximum contribution in one lump sum. Creating a pre-authorized plan allows you to invest regularly through smaller contributions on a weekly or monthly basis, meaning you can start saving for your dream retirement automatically.

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