The Mogo Blog

First comes denial...

Credit cards have this sneaky way of keeping us in debt, and even encouraging overspending. In fact, people spend 12-18% more when using credit cards*. They’re what’s considered “revolving debt” - meaning you can continue to spend what you pay down. If you’re like 46% of Canadians who carry a credit card balance every month*, you’ve probably experienced what we like to call... The 5 stages of credit card debt. Giphy Stage 1: Denial Your bank upped your’re feeling super rich. You can totally handle this extra room on your card like an adult. Right?? Giphy Stage 2: Anger Okay the extra limit maybe got the best of you. You “accidently” balled out on VIP Drake tickets...oh and that brand new outfit to wear to the concert too. Oops. SH*T! You know you’re maxed out and you won’t be able to pay the balance off this month. We probably shouldn’t mention that maxing out your credit card wrecks your credit score as well… Giphy Stage 3: Bargaining Okay okay...what if you can just majorly cut back on everything else this month... You consider eating only instant noodles,

How to pay your mortgage off faster

Buying a home is one of the best investments you can make and a super exciting milestone. But, your 25 year mortgage amortization period can sometimes feel like a life sentence. There’s actually a lot of ways you can pay it off faster - without sacrificing your other money and life goals in the meantime. Putting extra money towards your mortgage means huge interest savings and being mortgage-free faster. And, who doesn’t want that. Set up bi-weekly payments Once you have your monthly mortgage payment figured out, set up bi-weekly payments rather than monthly payments. By paying every two weeks rather than once a month, you’ll actually end up paying 13 monthly payments a year - which is an extra payment every year. This will cut your 25 year mortgage down by a few years and will save you money in interest. Put “extra” money towards it If you have a yearly bonus, or get money back on your tax return, (and you don’t have other high interest debt to pay off) consider putting that amount directly towards your mortgage. Look at your housing situation for opportunities Consider ways you could supplement your mortgage payments using

#MogoLife Interview: Meet Sean Cooper, the guy who “Burned his Mortgage”

Meet Sean Cooper, he paid his $420,000 Toronto mortgage off in 3 years before he turned 30, and then wrote “Burn Your Mortgage” to tell his story. How did he do it? Not gunna lie, he took some pretty extreme measures. He lived in the basement of the house and rented out the rest of the house. He lived super frugally and cooked all his own meals - hooray for KD! He also took 2 extra jobs, working around 100 hours a week, and rode his bike everywhere. Sean’s story is super crazy and super cool. It’s all about having a goal, and figuring out what you’re willing to sacrifice to get there. You might not be keen to kill your social life to get where you want to be financially, but you can definitely take a page out of Sean’s book (pun intended) and set your own #DoMoreSpendLess money goals. Sean Cooper | Personal finance expert | Financial journalist | speaker and money coach How did you get into personal finance? Sean: My reason is altruistic. I am passionate about financial literacy. I want Canadians to be better informed when making

5 steps for buying a home in the next 5 years

Buying a home is one of the biggest and most important investments you’ll make in your life (did someone say adulting?). It’s still the single largest source of savings for Canadian households, since every payment you make builds equity. If buying a home is in your 5 year plan, there’s some key steps you should take to make sure you reach your goal and get those dream digs. Know your current credit score and improve it You might not realise how much your credit score matters when buying a home. Ultimately, having a high credit score could mean you qualify for a higher mortgage. A good rule of thumb: if your credit score is between 620 to 680 you’ll qualify for a good mortgage product - BUT if it’s 680 and above you’ll qualify for a significantly better mortgage. So, get your credit score looking good before you apply for a mortgage. If your score is below 680, good news: you can improve it. If it’s low strictly because of debt utilization ratio, it could improve in as little as 30 days if you pay down your credit card balance so it’s

New Year's Money Remedy #3: Get your utilization ratio in check

In our first blog post in the New Year’s Money Resolutions series we talked all about facing your holiday credit card debt head on (and what to do about it). Check it out here for a refresher. If you’re like a lot of Canadians and you blew the budget over the holidays, let’s talk about that credit card that’s maxed to the limit.... Maxing out your your credit card has a negative impact on your credit score. And we’re not just talking about the 46% of Canadians who carry a monthly credit card balance. That includes you punctual peeps who pay it off every month. Your debt “utilization ratio” (aka your level of indebtedness, or how much of your total available credit you’re using) makes up approximately 30% of your overall credit score. Say what? ...We know what you’re thinking, Why didn’t anyone tell you this!?! Well, now that the bad news is out of the way, here’s the good news: Fixing your utilization ratio is one of the fastest ways to fix your credit score if it’s not so hot, or even just needs a little improving. You just