Help me get on the right track

  • Last Updated:
  • Sep 13th, 2017 11:00 pm
Jr. Member
Jun 18, 2011
177 posts

Help me get on the right track

I'm the type who hums and haws when buying furniture because I don't want to make the wrong choice for something that I will need to live with for 5, 10, 20 years. I need some guidance on choosing the right type of investments since I want to avoid ever needing to change strategy. I have lost a a decent amount of money playing penny stocks 5-10 years ago which got me to stop; shifted to focusing on contributing as much as possible to my DC Pension and RRSP through my employer/Manulife, and have been enjoying 12-13% annual returns which is a nice change. My employer has decided to change their benefit provider from Manulife to Desjardins and I now have $60K in RRSPs that I need to decide what to do with.

Current Portfolio:

TFSA: $45K
25% Marijuana stocks (bought in 2017 - medium/long term)
10% Gold stocks (bought in 2011 - holding until I can break even)
15% Large Canadian Equity (Bought in 2015 - short-term, planning for a 2017/2018 exit if stocks hit target)
25% VCN.TO (bought in 2017)
25% XAW.TO (bought in 2017)

DC Pension: $30K
Desjardins Mutual Fund (0.45% mgmt fees)

RRSP: $0K (starting)
Desjardins Mutual Fund (0.45% mgmt fees)

RRSP: $60K
Manulife 2050 mutual fund (0.32% mgmt fees)

Cash: $50K

Rainy-day fund cash: $80K (I have a crazy mortgage and plan on moving this around whenever there are high interest savings account promos)

Going forward I plan on continuing to contribute 20% of my paycheque, including Employer match, to my Desjardins DC Pension and RRSP account. I need to decide what to do with the $60K sitting with Manulife. I'm considering two options but leaning towards option #2. Option #1: keep it with manulife, automatic rebalance, suck it up and pay 1.5-1.7% mgmt fees or Option #2: open self-directed RRSP account with Questrade and purchase ETFs to balance my portfolio to model aggressive CCP (90%/10%). I don't mind rebalancing semi-annually so I think option #2 is the right choice. Option #3: transfer it all to Desjardins RRSP account.

What I probably won't be doing is adding contributions to this ETF portfolio since I much prefer my payroll deductions being automatically invested in my Employer's Desjardins DC Pension and RRSP funds. How should I approach having a mixed portfolio of ETFs and mutual funds. If I'm not actively growing my ETF portfolio with regular contributions, does it still make sense as an investment vehicle?

I would greatly appreciate any input.
1 reply
Deal Fanatic
Mar 24, 2008
5503 posts
Overall a good plan. I'd keep 3 months worth of mortgage payments in my emergency fund and put the rest of it on my , "crazy mortgage". Also, get rid of your gold stocks... What's the point of that? If you want to invest in gold, just buy gold.

20% is a healthy amount to invest, more than enough for your goals if you don't owe people money.
Illegitimi non carborundum