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You’re busy. To benefit the most from this blueprint in the least amount of time, I suggest that you ...

  • Skim the entire blueprint first. The key concepts are highlighted. 
  • Skip the content behind the
    These notes are for those who like some details about what’s happening under the hood.
    and especially the
    These notes are for those like me who need to know every detail, including the math.
    links, unless you’re one of those weirdos like me who needs to understand what happens under the hood.
  • ACT on the Next Steps at the end of the blueprint.

If you’re a financial “expert,” you can go directly to the “Customizing Your Blueprint” section. This summarizes the concepts with links to their explanations, which allows you to only drill down on strategies new to you.

Be sure you fully understand the Gross Up strategy, why most would benefit from RRSP Catch Ups even with negative returns, and the two lower-risk versions.

The RRSP Pasta Challenge

[ifurlparam param="firstname"][urlparam param="firstname"], if [/ifurlparam][ifurlparam param="firstname" empty="1"]If [/ifurlparam] you’re like most RRSP investors, applying the concepts in this blueprint could more than double your retirement savings, compared to your current approach. This would allow you to either retire earlier or increase your retirement lifestyle.

To start the discovery of how this is possible, take a minute to answer two quick questions.


In a 50% tax bracket with $1,000 after taxes to invest, how much could you (and should you) contribute to your RRSP?

a)  $500

b)  $1,000

c)  $1,500

d)  more than $1,500

e)  don’t know


Do you think that borrowing to make a larger RRSP Catch Up contribution can make sense?

a)  no

b)  yes

c)  sometimes

d)  don’t know


If you want to maximize your retirement savings and financial peace of mind, don’t just read. Engage. Answer the few questions.

You get to decide how nice you are to your future self. Isn’t it worth investing an hour or two to learn how to improve the decades you’ll spend in retirement?

When several small and not-so-small changes are made over decades, it can have a huge impact on your retirement. The financial return on your time could be tens of thousands of dollars an hour, or more.

And as you’re learning, think about how these ideas could improve your retirement savings, and how that would make you feel about finances and your future.

If you’re 100% confident of the answers, congratulations! If you also have the consistent discipline of a robot, you might be able to skip some of this blueprint.

You’re Not Alone

If you’re not sure of the answers, don’t feel badly.

Sad fact: We’re not taught about money. Not even the basics.

The sad result is that unless you’re one of the wealthy few, you probably aren’t even aware of fundamental concepts that can significantly increase your wealth and security. More powerful strategies used by the rich aren’t even on your radar.

And you’re not alone.

Despite 19 years of education, including degrees in engineering and computer science, I was financially illiterate. Fortunately, I discovered this reality early in life, and decided to do something about it.

In the world of finance, what you know is FAR more valuable than how hard you work.

So I read over 100 personal finance books and took courses to learn about the most effective ways to build wealth.

Then I wrote my own book Financial Freedom Without Sacrifice to share what I learned. It went on to sell over 145,000 copies, and I started teaching financial advisors coast to coast advanced wealth-building strategies to share with their clients.

But even after several more years, I still didn’t know the basic truths about RRSPs that I would discover later. This revelation was triggered by thinking about legislation that would have turned retirement planning upside down.

The Seniors’ Benefit legislation introduced in 1996 was eventually cancelled. It proposed replacing the Guaranteed Income Supplement, Old Age Security, and the age credit with a tax-free government income that would be clawed back at a rate of 20%.

When David Chilton was writing The Wealthy Barber Returnshe asked me for feedback on sections of his draft. We discussed many changes in the financial industry since we wrote our first books decades earlier. Investors had become much more knowledgeable since he wrote his mega-bestseller The Wealthy Barber, and indeed, because of it.

I suggested that despite the increased financial literacy, most savers still weren’t aware of a core RRSP idea that would increase their retirement savings by 25-100%.

This only made sense because the concept wasn’t even taught in the training programs available to financial advisors. David agreed that most investors weren’t aware of this basic concept, and added a chapter to his book entitled “A Simple Idea” to shed light on the issue.

When writing my latest book The Smart Debt Coach, I introduced the concept and more with the chapter “Don’t Put Dry Pasta in Your RRSP.”

The RRSP Pasta Challenge

The foundation of most Canadians’ voluntary retirement savings is RRSPs. This is especially true for the millions of middle- and upper-middle income savers who need to fund the majority of their desired retirement lifestyle on their own.

Because of the importance of retirement savings and the number of people impacted, my commitment and challenge is to help the millions using RRSPs to benefit from these untaught, fundamental concepts.

To achieve this, naturally I’m working with the financial industry — especially the financial advisors who are committed to the same goals, like [advisor_data param="Firstname"] [advisor_data param="Lastname"].

I’ve made educational resources addressing the core concepts available for free, for investors, advisors, and educators. More will be created and shared.

In addition, some brandable education resources, like this blueprint, allow others to align their brand with these win-win concepts.

This blueprint, and the system that advisors receive, organize the related strategies into a process that makes it easy to identify the combination of RRSP Refund Strategies that is mathematically and behaviourally optimal for you — to “MAX your RRSP Strategy.”

But [ifurlparam param="firstname"][urlparam param="firstname"], [/ifurlparam]I also need your help.

You see, I don’t just want you to be aware. And I don’t even want you to just understand.

[ifurlparam param="firstname"][urlparam param="firstname"], [/ifurlparam]I want you, and everyone you care about, to actually benefit from these ideas. Both in financial terms, as well as the emotional peace of mind of having more confidence about your financial future.

For you to fully benefit, and “MAX your Wealth,” my RRSP Pasta Challenge for you is to …

  • Understand how the RRSP Pasta Question can increase your retirement income 25-100%.
  • If these ideas benefit you, tell two friends so they can also benefit.

My hope is that this “MAX your RRSP Strategy” Blueprint improves the RRSP conversation, and with the guidance of advisors like [advisor_data param="Firstname"], makes it easier for you to understand and benefit from these concepts.

So let’s get started, and find out what pasta has to do with RRSPs!

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