The RDSP: IF You Qualify, Don’t Leave Money On The Table

The Registered Disability Savings PlanAt the start of 2009, Canada's financial world experienced a tremendous buzz when the Tax Free Savings Account was rolled out. But just one month earlier, there was another program unveiled that has not been given its proper due. If you're eligible for it and you haven't acted on it yet, I encourage you to read on.

The Registered Disability Savings Plan, or RDSP, was introduced in December 2008 to help people with disabilities have a more stable financial future. I am a big fan of this program and think that anybody who qualifies for the program should enroll. There is a lot of money on the table in the form of Canada Disability Savings Bonds and Canada Disability Savings Grants for those who can benefit from this program.

What is the RDSP?

The RDSP is a program designed somewhat like the Registered Education Savings Plan that helps parents fund their children's education. The RDSP provides an annual matching grant that the government will kick in when money is contributed to the plan.

The amount of the grant depends on the family income of the person with the disability, but we'll get to that in a moment. For beneficiaries with a lower income, there is also an annual Canada Disability Savings Bond of up to $1,000 that can be accessed without contributing any money to the plan, again based on the level of income.

Who Qualifies for the RDSP?

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Get Loads Of Free Movies With Scene Rewards

Get loads of free movies with Scene rewards

I've been collecting Scene rewards since late last year because that is when Cineplex FINALLY came to my area after buying out Empire Theatres who had a monopoly around here. Now Cineplex has the monopoly … but at least we have points!

Given that movies at the theatre are outrageously expensive, the program is actually quite generous and there are LOTS of opportunities to maximize your points so you can get free movies almost until your heart's content.

Rob, from Boomer and Echo touched on this subject recently which inspired me to put together my own tips and tricks as I've really been loving and benefiting from this rewards program lately.

When you're done here, you'll also want to check out my guide to saving money at the movies and apply those tips in conjunction with your Scene points to get maximum value.

The Normal (Slow) Way To Earn

The normal way to earn points is simply by joining the program and then either showing your scene card each time you watch a movie at a Cineplex affiliated theatre or getting them to scan the barcode on your Cineplex mobile app.

You typically earn 100 points per movie watched and it takes 1000 points to get a free, no-restrictions, admission ticket to any movie (yes, that means 3D and other upgraded movies too).

Supercharge Your Points Earning Potential

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BMO Air Miles Mastercard Review

Class Standard
Type MasterCard
Issuer Bank of Montreal
Annual Fee $0
Interest Rate 19.90%
Min. Income N/A
Reward Type Points
Reward 1 mile / $20 spent
Reward Return 0.5% to 0.75% of spending
Sign Up Bonus 400 500 miles (limited time)
3x the miles for the first 3 months.
Grace Period 21 days
Apply Sign Up!
The BMO Air Miles Mastercard is a good choice for anyone with low to moderate annual spending on their credit card that wants to collect Air Miles without paying an annual fee.

Positives:

  • No annual fee (no fee for additional cards).
  • 25% bonus (Air Miles) at Shell locations, 50% bonus (Air Miles) at National and Alamo Car Rental.
  • No limit to the amount of Air Miles rewarded.
  • Easy to use, straight forward online account access through BMO.
  • No minimum annual income requirement, great way for those with low credit scores to build their credit history.
  • Extended warranty coverage on purchases (up to one year) and purchase protection against theft or damage (up to 90 days).

Negatives:

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When to Buy Things To Save The Most Money

When to buy things to save the most moneyAn effective and simple saving strategy is to buy items in the off–season – when they are at their cheapest. For example, the price of air conditioners is the highest in the spring when the snow melts and it starts to get warmer. Prices start to come down in the fall as temperatures across the country start to drop.

Which season (and month) you buy an item can have a big impact on the price you pay for an item. Some things are significantly cheaper at certain times of the year. Below is a monthly breakdown of which months are best for buying certain items.

January

  • Christmas stuff (decorations, candles, ornaments, Christmas trees) can be marked down by up to 75% immediately after Christmas and leading into January.
  • TVs and home theatre systems. The two weeks leading up to Super Bowl have good deals and new stock comes in January through March.
  • Gift cards. Many people who received gift cards they don't want will post them on online classifieds sites to get rid of them at a discount.
  • Bedding, linens and swimwear.
  • Broadway show tickets. January is the slowest time of the year for Broadway shows, so the best deals can often be found then.
  • Video games. New games are released in the late fall for the Christmas shopping season, and tend to go on sale once Christmas ends.
  • Organizing supplies. Many people make new years resolutions related to getting organized. Plastic storage containers, label makers and other organizing supplies go on sale in January.
  • Cold and flu remedies – the peak of the flu season is in January and medicines, vitamins and pain relievers sometimes go on sale.
  • Gym memberships – promotions begin to cater to the new years resolution crowd.
  • Boats. Many boat shows occur in January and usually promotions (discounts) are offered.
  • Fitness gear. The new years resolutions start to kick in and people start trying to get in shape.
  • Hot foods and beverages – soup, chili, hot chocolate and anything else to keep you warm.
  • Other food – bananas, grapefruit, cabbage, carrots, squash.

February

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