Jeffrey Schwartz
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Jeffrey Schwartz is the Executive Director of Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada and President of the Credit Association of Greater Toronto (CAGT). Consolidated Credit is a national non-profit credit counselling organization that teaches consumers about personal finance through web-based budget and debt analysis tools, financial literacy community outreach programs and in-person or telephone counselling. CAGT is a non-profit association with a mission to provide a dynamic forum in which members can share information and expertise.

Entries by Jeffrey Schwartz

Kid Off To University? Give A Lesson In Money Management

(0) Comments | Posted April 6, 2017 | 2:10 PM

It's that special time of year again. Now is when the mailperson is in high demand. It's time for universities and colleges to mail out their acceptance letters to millions of high-school students across Canada.

It's an exciting and nerve-wracking time for students and also their parents. So, what...

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How To Protect Yourself From Becoming A Victim Of Identity Theft

(0) Comments | Posted March 15, 2017 | 4:50 PM

identity theft

I know no one wants to think they could ever be a victim of fraud however the reality is thousands of Canadians lost more than 10 million dollars to identity fraud in 2014 and authorities say this figure is on the...

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Your Guide To An Affordable Valentine's Day

(0) Comments | Posted February 3, 2017 | 2:11 PM

Let's be real -- Valentine's Day used to be about showing love and affection to the love of your life, now it has grown to a billion dollar holiday. Last year sales were expected to reach $19.7 billion U.S. according to the National Retail Federation.

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Cut Down Your Holiday List Without Looking Cheap

(0) Comments | Posted December 6, 2016 | 11:22 AM


Holiday gift giving can be really stressful, so now it's time to take a different approach. Let's take a step back this year and take a frugal approach to the holidays. I know when it comes to gift-giving; the holidays are filled with...

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Save Big: Go On A Fall Savings Diet

(0) Comments | Posted October 5, 2016 | 1:14 PM

As the warmth of summer disappears from the air, it is replaced by a cool fall breeze which gently tugs at the leaves on the trees. One by one, the leaves begin to fall to the ground. Some change to beautiful colours of red, orange and yellow while others fade...

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Stay In The Black This Holiday Season

(0) Comments | Posted September 27, 2016 | 2:19 PM

Now is a busy time of year in Canada. There are so many events to look forward to. There's Thanksgiving, Halloween, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and Christmas etc. It's definitely an expensive time of year for most Canadians.

How expensive? The average Canadian spent $1,164 last...

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Never Overspend On Back-To-School Shopping Again

(0) Comments | Posted August 31, 2016 | 10:09 AM

Dear parents:

I understand what you're feeling this time of year. I am a parent too. Some of you may be excited for your kids to head back to school; some of you may be scared little Johnny is heading to kindergarten for the first time; while others are...

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5 Ways To Slay That Massive Mountain Of Wedding Debt

(2) Comments | Posted August 18, 2016 | 12:57 PM

You found the love of your life and you planned the wedding of your dreams. To keep family members happy on both sides, you even incorporated many family traditions and perhaps even created some of your own along the way. You said your vows before your family and friends and...

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Talking Money Before You Say 'I Do' Can Save Your Marriage

(0) Comments | Posted July 28, 2016 | 12:21 PM

So much time and consideration goes into planning your big day. Couples decide on everything from an overall wedding theme (formal, casual, semi-casual, etc.) to the colour of shoes the bridal party will wear. It is common for couples to be caught up in their wedding plans, honeymoon and even...

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How To Maintain Your Budget While On Vacation

(0) Comments | Posted July 6, 2016 | 5:09 PM

It is the official vacation season in Canada. Many Canadians from coast to coast are getting ready to head down south to enjoy some play time in the hot sand and fun time in the water.

Although the fluctuating loonie may be annoying, you better believe there...

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6 Practical Ways To Save Money This Summer

(0) Comments | Posted June 24, 2016 | 11:53 AM

Summer is here. It is the time of year when many Canadians let their guards down and sometimes spend more money than planned on a variety of expenses from impromptu road trips to hosting various summer parties.

In the midst of all of your spending, you may have been...

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Teach Your Children Financial Lessons While They're Young

(0) Comments | Posted June 16, 2016 | 3:17 PM

Children are the future. They watch and learn from everything their parents do from proper etiquette to healthy eating habits. It is never too early to teach your children the importance of money. Teaching your child about the concept of money will help them as they grow and...

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How To Give Your Budget A March Break

(0) Comments | Posted March 3, 2016 | 11:51 AM

March Break is just around the corner, and if you're like many Canadians, you're probably wondering how you're going to afford to pay for it.

Chances are, your credit cards are still smoldering from the holiday season (the average Canadian planned to spend $1,600 on Christmas cheer)....

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The Biggest Personal Finance Fails Of 2015

(0) Comments | Posted December 31, 2015 | 1:42 PM

To err is human.

Mistakes can be a valuable learning opportunity, and sometimes, the bigger the mistake, the bigger your lesson will be. Lucky for us, there are plenty of people out there who made huge personal finance mistakes in 2015, and we have the benefit of being able to...

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Albertans Need To Set Their Personal Budgets To Survival Mode

(0) Comments | Posted November 25, 2015 | 3:14 PM

Credit bureaus use the term "delinquent" to describe bills that are 90 days passed due. I've never been a fan of that term. It seems too playful, like it's describing a child who is being naughty and deserves some time in the corner. It implies that the delinquent account is...

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Canada Needs A Seismic Shift In Financial Literacy

(2) Comments | Posted November 2, 2015 | 2:26 PM

The Financial Consumer Agency of Canada's (FCAC) Count Me In strategy is about to take centre stage in November during Financial Literacy Month.

Jane Rooney, federal Financial Literacy Leader, said in June that the strategy is "a call to action for every Canadian to make financial literacy a matter of...

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How to Recession-Proof Your Finances

(2) Comments | Posted September 1, 2015 | 12:28 PM

Well, it's official, or at least technically official: we're in a recession.

Tuesday morning, Statistics Canada released its latest GDP numbers showing that the Canadian economy shrank for a second consecutive quarter, meaning Canada has slipped into a recession for the first half of 2015.

What this means...

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5 Ways to Ensure a High Credit Score

(1) Comments | Posted August 20, 2015 | 8:34 AM

It's a three-digit number that can make you or break you -- it can affect your ability to buy a home, rent an apartment, buy a car, and in some cases prevent you from getting a job. But despite its value, many of us are blissfully unaware of our

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Newlyweds Need to Talk About Finances Beyond the Wedding

(2) Comments | Posted July 24, 2015 | 5:52 PM

Struggling to come up with a wedding gift idea? Forget the toasters -- Mr. and Mrs. Newlywed would probably get more use out of a bit of financial advice.

Canadians are into the height of wedding season, and while brides and grooms may have carefully budgeted for the wedding ceremony,...

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Let's Become the True North Strong and Debt-Free

(7) Comments | Posted July 1, 2015 | 8:53 AM

Canadians have many reasons to celebrate as their nation turns 148 years old tomorrow. They can even feel a bit of pride in an area that normally provides a healthy dose of shame in the headlines: personal finance.

Yes, household debt levels are as high as the CN Tower and...

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