BANKS, CREDIT UNIONS AND TRUST COMPANIES
You can open an account at a bank, a credit union, or a trust company. Before banking,
find out what kind of accounts it has and about interest and service charges for them. It
PAYING BY CASH, CHEQUE, CREDIT CARD, OR DEBIT CARD
To pay by cheque, you must show the cashier some ID. For that, the driver’s licence, or the
passport, or a credit card are the best best. If you don’t have the driver’s licence, you may get
a ID card from a Driver Services Centre. Look in the Blue Pages for that section.
You can get credit cards from department stores or gas companies. You can also get
bank credit cards like Visa and Mastercard.
Debit cards can be used instead of a cheque or credit card to buy things in some
stores. You get these cards from your banking institution. When you buy things using these
cards, the money gets deducted from your account immediately. You may also ask for
some cash for your own use at that time. Each time you use your debit card, there is a fee
for the service.
BANKING BY PHONE AND INTERNET
You may be able to do some of your banking from home with a touchtone phone such as
Paying bills. You may also be able to do your banking from home over the Internet. For this,
You need a computer, a telephone/cable line to connect to the internet and a software to
Access the Internet. You can get more information about these services, both from the
telephone company you are using and your bank.
MORTGAGE AND LOANS
A mortgage is borrowed money to buy a home. A loan is also borrowed money for other
Reasons, such as to buy a car, or a TV. You must pay back part of the borrowed money
Each month with interest. If you end up not being able to repay the borrowed money, there
Is a provincial government agency that will give you free advice and counselling on what to
Do. Look in the provincial government section in the Blue Pages under “Debt Counselling”
Or “Debtor Assistance” for address and telephone number.
PST AND GST
Whenever you buy something in B.C., you must pay seven per cent Provincial Sales
Tax ( PST) and seven per cent Federal Goods and Services Tax ( GST). There is, however,
No PST on clothes for children under 15 years old. If you have a low income, you can get a
GST credit, meaning the government sends back money to you four times a year. To apply
For this return, you need to fill in the special page of the income tax form.
All the working people have income tax taken off their pay cheque each time. Still,
Everyone has to fill in a tax form each year and send it to the Revenue Canada by April
30th. If too much tax was taken off your pay cheques, the government may send you
back that amount. Similarly, you may have to pay more to the government because not
enough money was taken off your pay cheques.
Self-employed people who own businesses have to pay income tax as well. Non-working
people, or no income people also have to fill in the tax form. During March and April, many
community organizaitons give free help with filling in income tax forms. You can also pay
someone to help you fill up the forms. For more information, contact Revenue Canada
at 689-5411 ( in Vancouver), 363-0121 ( in Victoria) and 1-800-959-8281 ( elsewhere).
Everyone who owns a house, land, or buildings must also pay property tax. Your
municipality office sends you a bill once or twice a year. You can also pay your property tax
as part of your mortgage.
Depending on you need, there are a number of ways available to invest your money.
TERM DEPOSITS AND GICs :
Term deposits or Guaranteed Investment Certificates ( GICs) pay more interest than
CANADA SAVINGS BONDS AND TREASURY BILLS :
When you buy Canada Savingsbonds and Treasury Bills, you are lending money
To the government. In return, the government pays you interest on the bonds.
Registered Retirement Savings Plan ( RRSP) let you invest money for your
Retirement. Putting money in a RRSP can lower the taxes you pay every year. If you
Are working or earning money from a business, you can put money in an RRSP. If
You take out some or all of the money before you retire, you will have to pay tax on it.
In that case, the tax is lower if your income is low.
LARGER INVESTMENT :
You may want to buy shares in a corporation, join with others in a “mutual” investment
Fund, or invest in other ways that may fit your need.
For further information on the options available, contact any bank, credit union, or trust
Companies. You may also talk to an investment/financial planner for advice.