So you left student life, got your first job and are finally making money. But what now?

At the end of the month, after student loans, rent and food, there may not be much left over in your bank account. But there likely is some, and you have big dreams: you want to take an extended vacation next year, save up for a down payment on a condo downtown and get into investing or start really growing your investments. Maybe you haven't really started to think about retirement or kids or life insurance yet, but you know these long-term financial goals will require some thought in the next couple of years.

How much should you contribute to your TFSA? Or is an RRSP better? Should you leave your savings in a high interest savings account or put it to work in the markets? And if you do start to invest, how can you ensure the right asset allocation? Oh, and what is asset allocation anyway?

A financial plan can help you feel confident and in control of your money. But creating one yourself can be confusing and leave you not sure where to start. 

That's where a banking advisor comes in!

What's a banking advisor?

A Scotia advisor works with you closely to create a detailed financial plan for your future. They first get to know you and your specific financial needs and goals and then you work out a plan together to help you move forward. They then review this strategy regularly to make sure it's still working for you.

It’s important to know that you get free access to a Scotia advisor when you are a customer!

How do I work with a Scotia advisor? Farah El-Masri, Scotia advisor



What does an advisor do?

An advisor from your bank works with you to create a realistic financial plan to manage your money. The plan is step-by-step, easy to follow and is based on what makes the most sense for you and your goals. 

A good financial plan includes:

  • Reviewing your financial situation and determining how much risk you can handle (like, how would you feel about the stock market going up and down through the year?)
  • Creating a solid budget to work towards having more money left at the end of every month
  • Managing debt, such as considering combining your loans at a lower interest rate to help pay it off faster
  • Major purchase planning, like if you're planning to throw a wedding soon or buy a car
  • Forming a long term investment plan, whether that's assessing the need for a personal investment portfolio, purchasing mutual funds or putting your money into options like a GIC*
  • Education planning, like if you have children or want to go back to school yourself
  • Retirement planning to make sure you have enough to support you when you stop working
  • Reviewing government benefits you may be entitled to, because who doesn't like extra money?
What is a financial plan? Farah El-Masri, Scotia advisor.



No two financial plans are ever the same. In your 20s, you might be focused on saving up for a down payment on a house, but someone else might be happy renting and is determined to put their extra income to work in the market. One person may be happily child-free and wanting to ensure their student loans are paid off as fast as possible so they have more money to travel, while another may be planning to have kids in the near future and wanting to create a budget that accounts for daycare and university savings.

Once you have a plan in place, it's time to put it into action. Your advisor will work with you to help pull it off, such as opening new accounts and setting up automated savings.

Do you need an advisor?

Everyone can use an outside look at their finances and help managing their money.

There is a myth that you need to have a certain amount of money before you can work with an advisor at your bank. That couldn't be further from the truth. We all have money needs, whether that's trying to reduce student loans, develop a short-term savings plan so we can go on a European vacation next year or make more money to move out of your parents’ house. You don't need wealth to start with an advisor – an advisor helps you build wealth.

The perfect time to begin figuring out a healthy financial future is when you land your first job.

Working with an advisor is especially helpful when you are just starting out with investing. For example:

  • If you're self employed, whether freelance, in the gig economy or a professional running your own business, you can get help budgeting when you are dealing with not consistent paycheques. 
  • If you're stressed about investments and trying to figure out the differences between a mutual fund, a robo-advisor and self-selecting stocks at DIY online brokerages.
  • If you recently came into an inheritance and are trying to figure out what to do next.
  • If your job is demanding and you don't have the time to research options to build wealth on your own.*
  • If you just went through a major life change, like buying property, having a kid or starting your first job.

Even getting financial advice through a review done once a year can be incredibly helpful to make sure your plan is working with where you are at currently with your life and finances.

Why does it help to work with an advisor?

An advisor can help you cut through the noise around the markets ups and downs and ensure that your goals are achievable.  They are there as a resource to help you navigate your investments through the years.

In fact, 86% of investors who met with a financial advisor in the past six months say that their advisor kept them on track to meet their goals, regardless of market changes, according to the 2021 Scotia Global Asset Management Investor Sentiment survey.

Your advisor can help you create a real roadmap towards your goals. They can also bring up financial issues you may never have thought of. Many Gen Z Canadian have savings account or have considered a TFSA, but what about other less exciting areas of financial planning — like insurance and trying to reduce your taxes?

A financial advisor can help answer key questions like:

  • Is my current financial plan working for me?*
  • Am I on track to meet my spending goals?
  • Is there an opportunity I'm missing to grow my money or cut expenses?
  • Do I have enough of a safety net in case of a job loss or emergency?

How much is a financial advisor?

If you are a customer at Scotiabank, you have free access to meet with one of our advisors.

If your money just seems to disappear every month — on exactly what you can't say — then it's time to get a plan in place. Your advisor always considers your personal needs, wants and lifestyle when helping you create a strategy for your money.

Planning for your future while working to get the most from your money now doesn't need to wait. Taking advantage of working alongside a free financial advisor now could put you one step closer to reaching your financial goals, whatever they are to you.

Ready to get your finances on track for your future? Come in and speak to a Scotia advisor