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J. Douglas Hoyes
Works at Hoyes, Michalos & Associates Inc.
Attended University of Toronto
Lives in Ontario, Canada
233 followers|107,685 views


Debt Study Released

+Sands & Associates, a consumer insolvency firm in British Columbia, released a study on consumer debt.  Follow the link to read the entire study.  There were many interesting aspects, including their findings on the warning signs of debt.

When asked "How did you know your debts were becoming a problem?", 43% said they were getting collection calls, and 65% said they were only making minimum payments.  Missing payments and wage garnishments also made the list.

My take-away from this question is that you shouldn't wait until you are getting collection calls to take action.  If you are only making the minimum payments you are not dealing with your debt, and the time for action is now.

#debt   #statistics   #britishcolumbia  
Sands & Associates's profile photo
Thanks for sharing +J. Douglas Hoyes! 
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Eliminate debt before retirement

In an interview with, I make the point that debt is not something you want to carry with you into retirement.  I give some tips, including eliminating high interest credit card debt first, and then working through and eliminating all other debt.

#debt   #retirement  
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Good vs Bad Debt

Do you believe that all debt is bad?  Or do you believe that debt can be good, depending on what you use it to purchase?

I invited four experts to give me their take on it, and their comments are quite illuminating.  It's not a simple discussion, because you may only know what debt is good in hindsight, after the fact (depending on whether or not you were able to pay it off).

My opinion?  If you can avoid debt, avoid it.  It makes your life much more simple and stress free.

Debt Free in 30 sits down with four financial experts to consider whether a debt can be good or bad and how to avoid taking on too much debt.
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If I declare bankruptcy, how will I survive without a credit card?

You travel for work purposes, and you need a credit card to book a hotel room; how can you do that if you lose all of your credit cards when you file bankruptcy?

In this just-released video, +Ted Michalos and I discuss how to survive a bankruptcy or consumer proposal when you surrender your credit cards.

#bankruptcy   #creditcard   #consumerproposal  
Rebecca Martyn's profile photoSands & Associates's profile photo
Absolutely agree with you on that +Rebecca Martyn & +J. Douglas Hoyes!  We so often see people so focused on "How will I live without credit?', but they're forgetting the more pressing current crisis they're facing. 
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Orchestra London Considering Bankruptcy?

Sadly, no-one is immune from math: if you spend more than you bring in, you have a problem.  It appears that Orchestra London was counting on a large donation that didn't happen this year, but they had already committed to spending the money, so now they are considering bankruptcy.

As I discuss in today's article, there are options, but quick action will be required.

#bankruptcy   #london   #debt  
Why is Orchestra London facing financial difficulty and what you can do to prevent the same situation in your own financial future.
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Why Conventional Wisdom About Mortgages is Wrong

"Buy the biggest house you can afford", we are told, because that will generate the maximum profit.  Interest rates are low, so you can afford a bigger mortgage, or so they say.

Unfortunately interest rates can do up, and it's not just the mortgage that you should be concerned about, as I explain in today's article.

#mortgage   #debt  
Is it possible to have a mortgage that is simply too large?  Here is the conventional wisdom: Buy as big a house as you can afford, because long term house prices always go up, so you can’t lose.   or It’s okay to take out a bigger mortgage, to increase... Read more
Keith G. Collins Ltd's profile photoLeigh Taylor's profile photo
Really informative article +J. Douglas Hoyes 
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Have him in circles
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Bankruptcy numbers turning upward?

In statistics just released by the Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy, insolvencies increased in December, and that's the first time that's happened in quite a while.

My guess is that the five year decline in bankruptcy volumes has ended, which is not good news for the Canadian economy.

#debt   #bankruptcy   #statistics  
Highlights of the Insolvency Statistics in Canada, December 2014. Includes data on bankruptcies and proposals.
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Pay off debt, or contribute to your RRSP?

In an article published today, +Jamie Golombek of the CIBC is quoted as saying that, with interest rates at record lows, and the stock market doing well, you should contribute to your RRSP before paying off debt.  His point is that if you have a mortgage at 3%, and are earning more than that on your RRSP, it makes sense to get the tax break and the higher yield on your RRSP, as compared to paying down a low interest rate mortgage.

I don't disagree with that math, but I have two comments:

First, as Mr. Golombek states, you should pay off high interest credit card debt, since it's unlikely that you are earning 20% in your RRSP.  I agree.

Second, Mr. Golombek does acknowledge that equity investment carries risk.  If you could guarantee that you would make 7% on your investments for the next five years, locking in a mortgage at 3% makes sense.  Unfortunately, there are no stock market guarantees.

Markets are at record high levels, and interest rates are at historic lows.  Will that continue forever?  I suspect not.  A not-unusual 10% stock market correction wipes out the investment advantage, so under that scenario paying off debt is the safest, and best, alternative.

My point: before you speculate with borrowed money, consider the risks.  Paying down a low interest mortgage may not seem sexy, but if the markets fall we will all wish we could achieve a 3% after tax return, guaranteed, which is what you get when you pay down your mortgage.

#debt   #mortgage   #interestrate  
Ted Michalos's profile photo
Respectfully, +Jamie Golombek has left out a couple of major considerations.  First, with interest rates at historic lows right now, your payments reduce more of your principle thereby reducing future interest costs.  Second, by paying down debt you reduce your risk of higher interest charges later - we don't know how long interest rates will stay this low, but at some point, they are going to rise and if you wait until rates are higher to pay down your debt you'll have missed this opportunity.  Third, if the interest you are paying on debt is at historic lows, then the interest you will earn on your RRSP investments will be even lower.  Why earn 1% on a GIC in your RRSP when you can save 18% on interest charged on your debt.  Finally, unless you can save significant amounts of money in your RRSP before you retire they may be costing you money when you retire.  Currently, Canadians have access to CPP (if they worked) and OAS when they retire.  OAS is reduced if you have other forms of retirement income - like from an RRSP that you've converted into a RRIF.  You need to do the math carefully to determine if you can save enough to justify the reductions you will have in the OAS when you retire.
Pay down your debt. 
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Can I sell my house to pay off my consumer proposal?

Yes you can.  One of the advantages of a consumer proposal is that you are in control of your assets (unlike in a bankruptcy, where you may lose them).  So, you can decide to sell your house, find a place to rent, and use the money to pay off your proposal.

Should you?  That's a more difficult question.  If your goal is to be debt free, selling your house and paying off your proposal makes sense.  If your house is expensive or larger than you need, selling also makes sense.  If the mortgage is affordable, or if you have special circumstances (like pets that would make it more difficult to find a place to rent), continuing to own your home may be a reasonable alternative.

Ultimately you should crunch the numbers and do what's right for you and your family.

#debt   #debtfree   #consumerproposal  
Ian Penney's profile photo
As an administrator of consumer proposals, I have also had instances where people who owe more on their mortgage than their house is worth have "walked away" from their house and had the shortfall covered by their consumer proposal.  This can also be great strategy.
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Insider Tips From an Actual Collection Agent

If you ever wondered what happens from the collection agent's point of view, today is your lucky day.  My guest today on Debt Free in 30 is +Blair DeMarco-Wettlaufer , an actual real life collection agent.  Read the show notes for lots of great links, and listen to the full podcast on the web, or download via iTunes.  You won't hear these tips anywhere else...
#debt   #collectionagency  
Blair Demarco-Wettlaufer breaks down the collection agency world and offers tips and advice to consumers about collection calls.
Ian Penney's profile photo
Interesting insights and tips from an expert in tough field.
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J. Douglas Hoyes

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just finished a Runtastic skiing of 19.37 km in 1h 07m

Only did three easy runs, but still covered almost 20 km.
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Will a Trustee Force you to Declare Bankruptcy?

Not at Hoyes Michalos we won't.  If we forced people to do something that wasn't right for them we wouldn't have thrived as one of Canada's largest personal insolvency firms for the last 16 years.

We want you to find the right solution for you, and that's why we explain all of your options, as +Ted Michalos and I explain in this video.

#debt   #bankruptcy   #bankruptcytrustee  
Adam Rauf's profile photoLeigh Taylor's profile photo
Thanks for posting +J. Douglas Hoyes , I've come across a few horror stories about people who meet with certain "professionals" that tell them that they HAVE to go bankrupt and that it's their ONLY option, thankfully they sought out second opinions...
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Have him in circles
233 people
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Consumer Proposal Administrator, Bankruptcy Trustee, Chartered Accountant
There is no "one size fits all" solution. Douglas reviews all options to provide a customized solution to your debt problems.
  • Hoyes, Michalos & Associates Inc.
    Co-Founder, 1999 - present
    In addition to meeting with people in financial trouble, Douglas is a frequent writer and speaker, working to educate Canadians on all of their debt management options.
  • KPMG
    Senior Manager, 1987 - 1997
  • PricewaterhouseCoopers
    Senior Manager, 1997 - 1998
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Ontario, Canada
Contact Information
310-PLAN, 1-866-747-0660 ext 4020
Helping you solve your debt problems
Co-founder, Hoyes, Michalos & Associates Inc., Ontario's largest independent personal insolvency firm.
Douglas is an expert in all aspects of debt management, including money management, budgeting, credit counselling, consumer proposals and personal bankruptcy.
Bragging rights
First trustee in Canada to electronically file a bankruptcy back in 2002. Douglas has personally filed almost 5,000 personal bankruptcy filings, and over 3,500 consumer proposals.
  • University of Toronto
    Commerce & Economics Specialist, 1983 - 1987
  • Institute of Chartered Accountants of Ontario
    Chartered Accountant, 1989
  • Canadian Association of Insolvency and Restructuring Professionals
    Chartered Insolvency and Restructuring Professional, 1994
  • Government of Canada
    Trustee in Bankruptcy, 1995
    Licensed by the government of Canada to act as a trustee in bankruptcy and a consumer proposal administrator.
Basic Information
Other names
Doug Hoyes, Douglas Hoyes, J. Douglas Hoyes
J. Douglas Hoyes's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
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