015: Online Meetup | ChooseFI, EFIC, and TFSAs

Welcome to the inaugural episode of another new series for Explore FI Canada! This time, it’s online meetups! This series will be bringing us back to the original intention of EFIC: to have roundtable discussions with Canadians on the FI path.

Every other week, Ryan will be hosting virtual meetups where we get to hear from you, the listener. We’ll be discussing all things personal finance in Canada and all recordings will be authentic and unedited!

Featured in this week’s meetup:

  • Ryan from Kitchener, Ontario.
  • Thanh from Kitchener, Ontario.
  • Carly from Vancouver, BC.
  • Kayla from from Edmonton, AB.

Topics of discussion:

  • Real-life meetups.
  • Explore FI Canada.
  • ChooseFI.
  • Early retirement.
  • What we hold inside our TFSAs.

Want to join the conversation?

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11 Replies to “015: Online Meetup | ChooseFI, EFIC, and TFSAs”

  1. Just listened to this.

    Thanks for sharing. Appreciate you guys sharing your holdings/strategies – curious to know if you’d each be willing to share your returns over the last year, 5 year, 10 years, etc.

    Just curious if you benchmark your returns against anything, and if so – how you guys are doing.


    1. Thanks for your comment, Jordan! Were you wondering about Ryan and our guests’ returns, or ours? Let us know so we can best answer your question. It could actually be an interesting future show topic as well. 😉

    2. I think the best way for benchmarking your returns is against the index or sector you’re attempting to beat. For example, if you’re picking blue chip Canadian stocks was is better than XIC? First year, 5 years? That’s how I would do that.

      As for sharing our returns, I think maybe one day in the future but that’s on the back burner for now. We’re easing into this!

    1. As always, thanks for listening Mr. PF. I loved Playing With FIRE and was hoping that it would be an easy way to teach others about FIRE.

      So far, it seems like it’s doing just that! I watched it with my kids (11 and 14) and they totally get it now. Thanks for sharing the Rational Reminder episode. I’m adding it to my playlist.

  2. Hey Guys

    I understand not wanting to share total portfolio value – but a return as a % …I don’t see the issue?

    I agree with using a simple benchmark – whether it be S&P, TSX or even a simple all in one ETF like VBAL/VGRO.

    I’ve been trying to encourage people to share their returns more often, as I think it’s important for readers to see our results.

    1. Hi Jordan,

      I agree that it’s valuable for others if we share our returns. I have no hesitation in doing so, but for me, the issue is I’m too lazy to figure this out!

      Going by my very inexact calculations, my portfolio is up 12% or so for 2019. As for my portfolio’s compound growth over the years, I’m afraid I’ll likely never get around to figuring that out! My best guess is it’s pretty similar to the average of the index benchmarks I follow (S&P, TSX, FTSE).

      Note: My portfolio is allocated 1/3 each to Canadian/US/International equities. We hold zero fixed income.

    2. Hmm, good points Jordan.

      Okay, I just looked and I’m up 16.34% going back one year. Compared against VCN, which returned 14.73%, I’m doing pretty good. VCN is the closest ETF to my individual stocks. Still, I’m taking risks by holding individual stocks (even if my bank stocks are considered “safe”) so I’d like to kick those to the curb sooner rather than later and go all ETF. My holdings are pretty diverse but it doesn’t beat VCN’s diversity or the rest of the world for that matter.

      Okay Jordan, let’s hear yours!

  3. I try to post my Trailing 12 month returns in my monthly updates each month (though actually forgot last month)!

    Looking at them right now, they are:

    TFSA: 24.33%
    RRSP: 15.23%

    The TFSA is 100% Canadian stocks (you can view holdings on my portfolio page)

    RRSP is mostly ETFs/FUNDs, with a few stocks. The majority is XAW & RBC Canadian Equity Income fund.

    The returns look amazing – and most years would be…but I believe the S&P is up about 25% for the year though…haha

    My annual returns “since inception” are:

    TFSA: 13.58%
    RRSP: 9.60%


    1. Are you tracking your returns using the info provided by the brokerage or are you tracking it yourself?
      I have to admit I’m not very good at tracking my returns, I do like to track my dividends though. According to TD my TFSA is up 19.39% this year, mostly dividend stocks in there. My RRSP is 15.6% and that is a big mixture of CDN & US stocks and a bunch of ETFs. I think 2020 should be the year I simplify!!

    2. Good looking returns Jordan, thanks for sharing. FI Garage did a year end episode talking about their dividend stocks returns. While I think ETFs are generally boring I wouldn’t mind doing something similar on EFIC next year – perhaps to spice things up we can compare our listeners portfolios to our portfolios, heck we could even throw in a high MER mutual fund in there for kicks and see where we all land. That’s an episode I would listen to!

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