Holiday Financial Gifts
It’s time for the second annual holiday financial gift guide from your Spring Planning team!
What follows are gift ideas for the financially inclined, but before you start making your list, check it twice¹ to make sure the recipient receives it as the kind, generous gift you mean it to be, rather than an (unintentional) criticism of their personal financial habits.
Remember that Spring doesn’t participate in any affiliate or referral programs as part of our conflict-avoidance policy, so none of the services or products listed below have been or ever will compensate us in any way for putting these ideas in front of you.
You might already be aware of the benefits of being a member of the Canadian Automobile Association, which include emergency roadside assistance (even if you’re a passenger in someone else’s car), but did you know that discounts at the movies, restaurants, gas stations, and even the symphony are available to members?
When you take sample days into account, giving someone a Costco membership is also like buying them lunch once a week (if they’re not one of those people who gets embarrassed by trying free samples :coughSandicough:) Plus, Costco sometimes throws in a couple of sweet discount vouchers when you buy a gift membership, so make sure to check their current offers.
Is there anyone who doesn’t like ad-free music without having to wrestle with $%#@* iTunes? No. No, there is not.
We haven’t found a good way to gift a Prime membership other than via an Amazon gift card (but tell us if we just got distracted by All The Books and didn’t look carefully enough). If you can help your senior family members with account set up and learning how to search and order, this can be a great gift for people who may have a tough time getting out to shop locally.
(We wholesale copied this from last year’s gift guide…because it’s still an excellent idea!)
Do you have a grandchild who has everything? Help their parents out by giving a deposit to their RESP. No, it’s not as much fun to see them open up paper as it would be to provide a gift, however we know quite a few young adults (including Julia’s son) who were mind-blowingly ecstatic when they realized their grandparents had made it possible for them to attend post-secondary school. You might not get smiles that one holiday morning, but you’ll get a lifetime of gratitude from an adult who knows just what it means to graduate with reduced debt.
Is your young adult too old for an RESP but not making enough money to really start saving? Start them off with a deposit, and help them to open an account with their local financial institution or a roboadvisor. Spend time talking with them about how TFSAs work, and get them a (free) copy of our Women & Money ebook – which is actually fantastic for everyone – to get them started on savings habits that will change their lives.
Although not technically money-related, but giving the gift of experiences like a supper out, a sleepover, a concert, or a movie night helps kids especially see time spent together as something that’s valuable in and of itself.
(Come on, you knew we were going to have a list of book recommendations as long as your arm. Here are a select few, some from our last year of book reviews and some new additions (that you may see on next year’s review list). You can also check out all of our past book reviews and summer reading lists for more suggestions)
While we can learn financial skills at any age, it’s critical to start working with children when they’re young. Studies have shown that life-long attitudes and habits are often solidified by the time we’re 7 years old. This includes our attitudes and expectations around money. This book is perfect for littles learning about money, and this page has tons of free worksheets for you to use with them as well.
This is the book you should give everyone you’re going to sit around a holiday table with…and might appreciate reading yourself first! For many of us this can be a season of difficult relationships, and improving how you listen may improve how you connect with the important people in your life.
Although you should be careful who you give this to (see above about inadvertent messaging), it’s the perfect book for someone with debt (and enough income to keep them safe with a little extra left over) because it’s shame-free.
Although not an investing 101 book, this is a great gift for beginner investors who may otherwise be seduced by flashy, secret-sauce investing methods and need to be encouraged by the fact that investing well is “arduous, boring, and commonsensical”.
This is an intense present to give, but perfect for the deep thinkers in your circle who may be interested in a fully researched, meticulously crafted study of the historical, cultural, and economic path we’re currently on, the terminology to discuss it, and the tools to recognize it as it shifts and morphs to evade detection.
Just right for the women, not only is Theemes’ own journey inspiring, so are her revelations around money behavior and why women don’t feel empowered when it comes to finances. Financial literacy topics are discussed in a way that connects specifically with most women.
Perfect for the entrepreneur in your life who may have been conditioned to analyze their accounting and financial statements without a system in place to have an immediate, stress-reducing view of their business cash flow.
This is a book for anyone who is truly curious about how human beings (alone or together) can create success – whether that success comes in the form of physical achievement, productivity, relationship management, memory improvement, team work, or fat wads of cash.
A gift for the almost-retired people in your life that will equip them well for retirement planning – on their own or with a planner.
That’s it from your Spring team. Special thanks to lead administrative slayer Lindsay, lead marketing slayer Jiveney, CEO Julia, and cash flow and financial planner Karen for their help pulling this together!
¹ See what we did there? Ho, ho, ho! (see what we did there?)