27 Apr

Cleaning & Greening

You can take control no matter your stage of life!

Have you heard of Swedish death cleaning? It’s not about finding out what items “sparks joy” but rather making sure we’re not leaving a mess behind for those we love. Surprisingly, doing this can lead to treasures and experiences to be enjoyed now!

We also got into the nitty gritty of the green end-of-life options, what you can do about it now, and why you may want to reconsider what you think you know about your choices.

Disclaimer: We are not lawyers, and this shouldn’t be taken as legal advice. And remember that we’re usually referring to how things are in BC, Canada, so things might be different where you are.

Watch the entire event

“Cleaning” Video Clips:

“Greening” Video Clips:

Additional Resources:

31 Mar


How do you want to be remembered?

This was more of a workshop, so while we have provided some short video clips, we’d encourage you to watch the entire event to get the real value out of the information. We promise you’ll leave feeling accomplished and inspired!

Disclaimer: We are not lawyers, and this shouldn’t be taken as legal advice. And remember that we’re usually referring to how things are in BC, Canada, so things might be different where you are.

Watch the entire event

Video Clips:

Additional Resources:

  • Julia Chung of Spring Planning Inc Financial Planning Advice / Retirement Planning
  • Willow – Free 5-minute Legacy Love Letter worksheet
02 Dec

I’m Dead Now What – 101

Welcome to “I’m Dead, Now What?”

For something with a 100% likelihood, most of us don’t do a great job of planning for death.

We’re running this series to explore life transitions, death, and how to plan for the inevitable.

I’m Dead, Now What features Christa Ovenell, aka Death’s Apprentice. Christa is a licensed funeral director and a certified Elder Planning Counsellor, specializing in end-of-life education and planning. You can catch her monthly on CBC’s North by Northwest.

Christa and Danielle

“Most of us will spend significantly more time researching which phone to buy than contemplating any element of our own advanced care or transition planning.

Do you know the simple steps you need to take to get your affairs in order?

It’s remarkably easy, incredibly empowering, and trust me: being ready is the biggest gift you can ever give.” ~ Christa Ovenell

Our first event focused on the legal basics – the what and why of:

  • Wills
  • Powers of Attorney
  • Representation Agreements

Disclaimer: We are not lawyers, and this shouldn’t be taken as legal advice. We know some great lawyers (recommendations below) if you want to follow up with them and get specific direction. And remember that we’re usually referring to how things are in BC, Canada, so things might be different where you are.

Feel free to click through the individual topics to learn more. The full recording is also below.

Video Clips:

Summary of the 3 Legal Basics

Representation Agreements

Powers of Attorney


“I don’t own anything of much value”

“I’m too young to need this!”

Watch the entire event.

(includes info on what if you expect to inherit someday; what’s the bare minimum you should do; online platforms to do this yourself; what are “funeral wishes” anyway; what is a co-executor; I’ve moved; rush to cremation; etc.)

Additional Resources:

Online wills, powers of attorney, and representation agreements, including discount codes for you! (Simple, legal, and under $250, so no excuse not to do it.)

  • LegalWills.ca – any product is 20% off by using code “deathsapprentice” at checkout
  • Willful.co – any product is 20% off by using code “ALLANFINANCIAL20” at checkout

Local lawyers who specialize in simple estate plans and price accordingly –

30 Dec

What to Expect

What to Expect

A Quick Overview 

Getting life insurance can be quite a process, but we’re with you every step!

First, we’ll get to know you and how life insurance can help your specific situation. We’ll recommend something based on your age, gender, health, and lifestyle. You’ll apply for the insurance by answering lots of questions about those things. 

After we send in your application, the insurance company might ask you to verify or give further info. Once they’ve reviewed everything, they’ll make you an offer. If we all like it, you accept, and you’re insured!


Learn more about each step of the process

The first step in getting you insured is to get to know you – what your specific life circumstances and goals are, and how life insurance can help. Then we’ll do an application, which is totally cost and commitment-free.

We’ll recommend the life insurance company that has the best option for you. We use industry rules of thumb to figure out how much you need, and how much it’ll cost. Our team will take your details for your application.

The insurance company needs to know all about you – where you work, how much you make, your family medical history, if you smoke…what you smoke. They’ve got a lot of questions, so prepare to share! It’s important to be totally transparent at this stage, otherwise you risk jeopardizing a potential claim.

You’ll answer these questions with one of us, either over the phone or in person, which takes about 20-30 minutes. To complete your application, you’ll sign off on a bunch of documents – at this stage, your signature only means you’re asking them to consider you.

Once we’ve submitted your application, the insurance company we’re applying with might ask for further info or verification.

They might call you to ask you some more questions (usually about your health and lifestyle) or to verify your details.

If you do any “high risk” activities (like skydiving or backcountry skiing), there could be additional forms for you to fill out and sign.

They could also ask for your driving record, a report from your doctor, and potentially even a blood and urine sample.

They’ll gather all the information they need from a number of sources to make you an offer.

Once the insurance company has reviewed everything, they’ll make you an offer of insurance.

They could say you’re a “standard risk” (which means average in their eyes) or they might give you a “risk rating.”

That means there’s something about your health or lifestyle they’re concerned about (might be the pickleball), and they want you to pay them more to insure that additional risk.

If their offer lines up with what we estimated, our original recommendation should be accurate.

If not, we’ll re-work the numbers, or explore offers with a different insurance company. They don’t all assess things the same way.

+ Step 4: ACCEPT 

Once you have an offer we’re all happy with, you can accept by signing on the dotted line. Congratulations! You now have life insurance. 

The insurance company will send you your policy and you’ve officially got yourself a contract.

We don’t just leave you here. We’ll stay in touch, checking in with you at least once a year to review your policy and send you an annual statement.

We also want to make sure your life insurance continues to meet your needs over time; so please let us know of any big changes in your life – health, wealth, or otherwise (like if you move, have a kid, get married or divorced).

We also always monitor what products are available on the market, so we may reach out if we find something that could better suit your needs.

Welcome to the Allan Financial family! We want you to enjoy your life. We’ve got a great community of financial experts and a bunch of free resources. Ready to begin?

20 Dec

Insurance 101

Life Insurance 101

Why would I need life insurance?

Life insurance helps take financial care of your family, loved ones, or even your business if something happens to you. If you have a mortgage, income that would need to be replaced, or taxes that would need to be paid, it can offer a solution.


How much does it cost?

The life insurance companies determine your cost based on your age, gender, and health. It also depends on how much insurance you want, and what type of life insurance you get. Your insurance payments are called “premiums” and are usually paid monthly or annually.


What’s the best type of life insurance to get?

Each type of life insurance has its pros and cons. In Canada we have 2 main types: “term” and “permanent.” Here’s a brief summary their differences:

Term Insurance

  • Term insures you for a set period of time. For example: years left on your mortgage, until you retire, or until your kids are no longer financially dependent on you.
  • If you want to renew your insurance after the term expires, your premiums increase, sometimes by an exponential amount. This can be problematic if you need the insurance longer than you originally anticipated.
  • Unlike permanent insurance, there’s no opportunity with term insurance to pre-pay, or to have an account inside your policy you can pay into to create additional value.
  • Term insurance is the simplest life insurance product. Permanent insurance is a little more complicated, but offers additional flexibility and financial benefit to you.

Permanent Insurance

  • The term of a permanent insurance policy never expires.
  • When you apply, you have the option to pre-pay for several years’ worth of insurance.
  • If you stop paying your premiums, you may still be insured under your policy if you’ve paid enough money into it already. This is because a permanent policy has an account inside of it where your money can grow.
  • There are actually three kinds of permanent insurance: “universal life,” “non-participating whole life,” and “participating whole life.” If you really want to get into the nitty gritty, we’re happy to chat.

The important thing to know is that universal life offers both flexibility and financial benefit at a lower cost.


How much do I need?

It depends! We’ll work with you to recommend an amount and price point customized to your situation.


What is Allan Financial’s role?

We work with several life insurance companies — Sun Life, Manulife, Canada Life, RBC, ivaribeneva, Industrial Alliance, Specialty Life Insurance, and BMO. They all have different products and pricing structures so we get to choose what works best for you! Our role is to advise you, represent your best interests, and make the process as easy as possible.


How does Allan Financial get paid?

We get paid a commission by the insurance company. Sometimes, we’ll use a portion of our commission to make your life insurance more affordable. Ask us for more details!


How do I get started?

08 Nov

Adulting IV: Enjoy Your Life

Adulting with Ross

After our intro event, we conducted a highly scientific survey and have based our sessions on your feedback. We brought in Ross Allan to talk about one of those alternative assets – life insurance!

“But isn’t that just for when you have kids?” you say. Ross shared a few reasons to have life insurance – he proved even life insurance can be funny, and showed us how it can be a tax-advantaged way to invest.

As a bonus you’ll find photos of the event below!

We discussed things like:

  • Insurance *isn’t* to protect the Golden Egg, it’s to protect the Goose that lays those Golden Eggs!
  • The different types of insurance that can protect the Goose.
  • Why life insurance is considered an alternative investment asset.

Ross’ Adulting Advice

Event Photos