A new trend in generational wealth transfer promises to change the way Canadians look at inheritance, and how they plan for retirement. New research released today by Investors Group shows that Canadians are looking at inheritance in a whole new way-in fact, the majority of Canadians (63 per cent) believe its best to give children financial gifts while the giftor is alive.
"Whether they want to lend their children a helping hand as they're getting their feet on the ground, or they want to watch their children enjoy the gift, Canadians are telling us that they believe its best to give financial gifts to their children during their lifetime," said Debbie Ammeter, Vice President of Advanced Financial Planning Support with Investors Group. "This represents a significant change from the traditional practice of leaving an inheritance to children in a will, and it has significant implications for tax and estate planning."
It seems that more younger Canadians are also counting on an inheritance for their own financial security-more than 20 per cent of non-retired Canadians are counting on inheritance as a source of income in retirement, compared with 10 per cent of retired Canadians.
"As Canadians plan for their retirement, many are counting on an inheritance as a source of income. While the results of our research indicate that this may be a reasonable expectation, it may be difficult to determine when and how much inheritance one will receive," Ammeter noted. "It is important to look at any financial gifts from a parent as 'extras' and ensure your core retirement plan is solid. Similarly, it is important for retired Canadians to consider whether they wish to give their children financial gifts during their lifetime, and whether their own finances will allow for this."
The Decima data were gathered between October 20th and October 30th, 2006, through Decima eVox, the company's large national online panel. Results are based on a sample of 2,170 Canadians, and the corresponding margin of error is 2.2%, 19 times out of 20.
Investors Group, founded in 1926, is a national leader in delivering personalized financial solutions to Canadians through a network of approximately 3900 Consultants located throughout Canada. In addition to an exclusive family of mutual funds and other investment vehicles, Investors Group offers a wide range of insurance, securities, mortgage and banking services. Investors Group is a member of the IGM Financial Inc. (TSX: IGM) group of companies. IGM Financial is one of Canada's premier financial services companies with over $119 billion in total assets under management.