About Stress Test
Is a $100,000 salary enough for a comfortable life any more? Where are mortgages headed next? Are you electric car curious? Rob and Roma chat with the reporters who wrote some of the best-read personal finance stories from The Globe and Mail this year.
Many Canadians have become first-time pet owners since the pandemic. But with the price of pet food and vet costs soaring, owners are struggling to afford their COVID companions. In this episode, Roma speaks to Shawn Morey, the executive director of the Peterborough Humane Society. We’re also joined by two people that became first-time pet owners in their 20s.
During the pandemic, employees had the upper hand in the job market. But the balance of power has shifted back to employers. They’re more hesitant to hire, less willing to offer remote work and less generous with what they are offering. We hear from a recent grad who applied for more than 100 jobs before landing a role, and a recently laid off tech worker with over a decade of experience. And Rob talks to Jermaine L. Murray, a Toronto-based tech recruiter and career coach.
The urge to splurge is universal. After the bleakness of the pandemic, people are spending more on the big and little things that bring them joy. But there are healthy ways to manage splurge-spending that don't leave you buried in debt. In this episode, we hear from a Swiftie with a “Taylor Swift" concert obsession. And Roma speaks with Shannon Lee Simmons, a certified financial planner and founder of the New School of Finance.
First, home owners with variable rate mortgages felt the pain of soaring interest rates. Then, people with fixed rate mortgages began to renew at sharply higher rates. In this episode, we hear from first-time homebuyers in Vancouver and Kingston who are now spending more than half their income on housing. And Rob talks to Victor Tran, an Ontario-based mortgage broker.
The appeal of the DINK lifestyle – that’s double income, no kids – might seem obvious. But having more control over your life and finances comes with questions about your social safety net in retirement. We spoke to two women who are embracing the DINK life, along with Jay Zigmont, the founder of Childfree Wealth, a financial planning firm that serves people who don’t have kids.
A growing number of Canadians are living with roommates longer than they ever expected. What once was seen as a short chapter in life is turning into a long-term way to find affordable housing. Soaring house costs has people searching for roommates well into their 30s and beyond. We spoke to three women in Vancouver, Toronto and Halifax about how living with roommates is helping them make ends meet.
What does the “new normal” look like these days? In a period of soaring costs and rampant uncertainty, it means spending a larger chunk of your income on housing—whether that’s high rent or supercharged mortgage payments. Here to help you make sense of it all, join hosts Rob Carrick and Roma Luciw for another season of Stress Test, The Globe’s personal finance podcast for Gen Z and millennials. Also coming up this season: how to talk to your family about inheritance, the economics of child-free couples, and the splurges that are bringing you joy.
After years of soaring home prices, there was hope that rising interest rates would lead to lower prices in 2023 and give young Canadians an entry point into the market . And while they did go down, higher mortgage rates have left housing as unaffordable as ever. For those without family help or oversized paycheques, buying a home is just not financially realistic. We’re dedicating the last episode of this season of Stress Test to exploring why people are giving up on homeownership and how they see their financial future.
Student debt is a growing problem in Canada - one that’s set to get worse in the coming years. And although tuition has crept higher, it’s the soaring cost of rent and everyday living that's causing the trouble. So what should students consider before making decisions for their post-secondary lives? Paul Kershaw, founder of Generation Squeeze and a professor at the University of British Columbia, describes how expensive student life has become - and how students are coping. We also hear from a 33-year-old who graduated 10 years ago with $40,000 in student debt, which she’s still paying off. Plus, The Globe’s personal finance reporter Erica Alini shares how rent in both large and small cities is changing the Canadian student experience.
It’s tough to save money to invest in the first place, so it stings to watch your investments drop. If you’ve started in the last few years, you’ve just seen your first large ups and downs in the stock market. So how do you know if you’re on the right track? And how do you keep emotions in check? A 38-year-old from Mississauga who started investing during the pandemic shares how he handled the rollercoaster ride and what he’s learned. And Rob speaks to Darryl Brown, an independent investment consultant, about why investors are nervous and how they can better endure big swings in the stock market.
Climate change is a growing concern for many young Canadians, with some questioning where they should live, what they should be saving for and how they should invest. Others wonder whether they should bother planning for a future at all. But is there a smart way to weave our climate concerns into our personal finance decisions? Certified financial planner Shannon Lee Simmons, who says this issue comes up all the time among her clients, shares her thoughts on how to arrange your finances amid climate uncertainty. Plus we hear from a 36-year-old Torontonian who considers his environmental footprint with every decision he makes.
A $5,700 wedding dress for $64. Expensive baby items for a fraction of the price. Construction materials to renovate a home. When you need something, buying used is a great way to save a pile of cash and keep perfectly good items out of landfills. It isn’t a new phenomenon, but it’s gaining more popularity as living expenses soar. In this episode, three guests share their experiences thrifting and their advice for others to get a good deal.
For the one in six Canadian couples who experience infertility, the path to having a baby can be difficult emotionally, physically and financially. Same sex couples and people trying to get pregnant without a partner are on the same road. And for all these aspiring parents, fertility treatments aren’t cheap. In this episode, Roma speaks to Dr. Tamara Abraham, a reproductive endocrinologist and infertility specialist, about the IVF process. Plus, several Canadians who are undergoing fertility treatments share what it’s costing them and things to consider now if you’re interested in having kids one day.
Tax season can be, well, taxing. Whether you’re a gig worker trying to keep track of receipts or a remote employee struggling to figure out how much home office space to claim, filing a return can be daunting. We know most of you don’t have an accountant on your favourite contacts list, so we’re dedicating this episode to all things taxes. Rob speaks to expert Jamie Golombek to demystify some tax basics and offer tips to get you through this tax season.
In 2022, the number of people moving to Alberta hit its highest level in almost a decade. At the same time, a record number of people left Toronto for other provinces. And it all comes down to affordability. In this episode, we’ll delve into the factors contributing to the rise in interprovincial migration and hear from Canadians who made the move - and how it’s worked out for them.
The economy is looking shaky and everyone’s trying to save money, whether it's on rent, groceries or just living life. The good news? The Globe’s personal finance podcast for Gen Z and millennials is back for another season. Join hosts Rob Carrick and Roma Luciw as they make sense of a changing financial reality - and help you achieve your goals. Up this season: how thousands of Canadians are leaving Toronto and Vancouver for cheaper living in Alberta, why you should care more about tax season and the high cost of fertility treatments for those struggling to have a family.
When we first launched Stress Test, the homeownership story was one of low interest rates, climbing prices and bidding wars. But the real estate market has changed drastically this year - now it’s a story of rising interest rates, falling prices and fewer listings. So what does it mean for new and potential homeowners? In the last episode of the season, we’re checking in with recent buyers to see how they’re feeling in this changing market - and whether recent changes have helped them or hindered them. We hear from two Canadians with variable mortgages - one who bought at the top of the market and is feeling the pain of rising mortgage payments and another who has made peace with his scenario since he got the house he wanted. Plus, we hear from a couple who was finally able to buy a home due to lower real estate prices, regardless of higher rates.
Canadians are waiting longer to have kids. If they do, they’re having fewer. And people say money is one of the big reasons why they’re going childfree. In this episode, we’re looking at the most personal of personal finance topics: the cost of deciding whether to have children, when and how many. We hear from a 27-year-old woman from Mississauga, Ont., who is pushing back plans to have kids until she can afford a home. We also hear from a 28-year-old from Vancouver who has decided not to have kids at all for financial reasons. Plus, Roma speaks to Melissa Leong, a Toronto-based personal finance expert and mom of two, about how much kids cost and why people are delaying the expense - or avoiding it altogether.
Chances are your salary isn’t rising as fast as inflation. But before you march into your boss’s office to demand a raise, remember there’s a recession looming. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t ask - but your pitch needs to be researched and realistic. In this episode, Rob speaks to compensation expert Manny Campione about what’s going on in the job market and how to effectively negotiate your salary. Plus, we hear from a 27-year-old from Edmonton who first tried to negotiate a raise at his work, but wound up switching jobs to get the pay he wanted.