Literally all posts.

This is the best place to binge-read, if that's what you're into!

5 Hard-But-Worth-It Ways to Save More Money

As a follow-up to my post about easy ways to save more money, I want to talk about the flip side of things—hard ways to save more money. Specifically, I want to talk about the very worthwhile high effort, high impact ways to make a big difference in your financial...

8 Actually-Easy Ways to Save More Money

I spoke at an event last week, and the moderator asked a great question: “What are some easy ways to save more money?” I say great question, but I completely blew it in person, and was like “Uuuhhhhhh track your spending?” Which is a great way to save more money, but...

How We Manage Money Now That We’re Married

One of the most frequent questions I’ve heard since we got married is “How do you manage your money now that you’re married?” Truly, it’s been the second-most-asked question after “How much did you spend on the wedding?” because on both counts, there aren’t many...

Focus Areas, Goals, and Tactics: Why You Need All Three

It’s almost the High Holidays of Goal Setting: New Year’s Eve. While I am not what anyone would call a master partier, and struggle greatly with staying up until midnight—seriously, we are the couple that ghosts at 12:05AM feeling very proud that we made it through...

How to Find The Right Real Estate Agent for You

This post is a paid collaboration with the Real Estate Council of Ontario, but all opinions and house-hunting stories are my own. When you're house hunting, working to find the right real estate agent is important, because you want to be ready when you find a house...

What You Should Read While I’m Away

As a lot of you know, I'm taking a few weeks off to celebrate my wedding this summer (here's a post about how we budgeted for the wedding, and the best wedding budget tips I've found this year!). That starts today, and I'll be back on August 20th with a new post! But...

EQ Bank Review: The Best Savings Account in Canada?

I have a very boring and very predictable answer when people ask me where they should stash things like their house down payment savings. “Are you in Canada? Then my answer is EQ Bank, no question.” I recommend them in comments and emails and posts so often for a...

How to Prep Financially to Go Full-Time Freelance

This post is a collaboration with TD Insurance, but all opinions are my own. I’ve been running Half Banked as a side hustle alongside my full-time job for three years now. At different points during that time, there were moments when I sat down to evaluate whether I...

5 Thoughts After One Year of Home Ownership

In honour of the one-year anniversary of moving into our house (this Friday!) I wanted to share some thoughts I have about our first year in the house has been like, and on home ownership in general.  The type of house you buy will impact your lifestyle a lot. The...

Saving For Retirement: Is It Even Possible?

The internet is so mad! Again! About retirement guidelines! If you’ve seen the “by 35, you should…” meme out of context, it’s all based on an article in MarketWatch that recommended—accurately—that you should have 2x your salary put away for retirement by the age of...

What Tracking My Calories Taught Me About Money

You would think, for all the articles I’ve written about tracking your spending, that I wouldn’t be so surprised at the power of tracking, right? Like “Desirae, you’ve been talking about this for almost three years. You are the annoying cheerleader for tracking that...

How to Save an Emergency Fund: A True Five-Year Story

If you’re looking for a quick, pithy article about how to save an emergency fund, this is not it. I mean, I can give you the basics, which is to set a goal, save money every month, and then hit that goal—but that’s not all that helpful. Especially if you’re just...

Paying Off Debt: Did I Miss The Panic Memo?

I have debt. A few years ago that sentence would have sent me into a total tailspin. I was always so adamant about not carrying credit card debt (still am, btw) and I even bought my first car in cash. Debt was not a part of my financial life. But right now, it is....

Can I Afford That Luxury Thing?

It’s so easy to feel guilty spending on things that feel luxurious—but sometimes that guilt is totally unnecessary. Here’s how you can figure out whether you can afford to spend on that luxury thing, guilt-free.

You Don’t Need to Buy a House

There’s a lot of pressure out there to omg-buy-a-house-ASAP… but it turns out, you can be a successful human who will retire just fine even if you never own property. Here’s a few of the ways people will convince you to buy, and how to reply if you’re just not ready yet (or ever).

How Much Does It Cost to Sell a House?

When we sold our place, I kept track of everything we spent on the process—and spoiler alert, it was not cheap. (And that’s not even counting the sheer stress of the process, although I did count some of the convenience purchases we made to alleviate the stress!)

Or, And, If: Three Magic Words for Your Budget

This is not some “The Secret” post about how if you just think magically, money will show up in your life. Nope, it’s much more focused on how to make choices and think of options you had never considered—especially not when every piece of standard wisdom says you can’t do this stuff.

Five Things To Do Before Buying a House

Looking for a list of things you should tackle before you buy a house? Step right up pals, because I did all the heavy lifting for you. Here are the top five things you need to tackle before you buy a house.

When is $150 More Than $150?

To celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday, RBC asked Canadians how they would use $150 to make an impact in their communities—and then they actually gave them the money to make it happen. Here’s just a few of the amazing stories.

How to File Your Taxes Online in Canada

Wondering how you can possibly do your taxes yourself? Trust me, it’s not as hard as Tax People make it seem (especially not with my one true tax love, SimpleTax, made by Really Great Tax People Who Want You to Be Happy.) Here’s everything you need to DIY your taxes this year.

How (And When) to Start Online Banking

Sure, starting to bank online is A Thing I Recommend, but I’m not naive: I know it can feel like a pretty big step for a lot of people, especially since it can seem like this big black hole of “How?!” questions. How do I actually sign up? How do I switch over all of...

How Not To Choose Between a TFSA and an RRSP

It’s been a while since I shared a hilarious tale of the times I did the opposite of what standard financial advice - whether my own or someone else’s - would have recommended in that situation. For reference, the things I’ve been an example of how NOT to do include...

How Much It Cost To Own a Used Car For a Year

I like to consider myself a fairly frugal car person. Probably because as any Real Car Person would tell you, I’m not a car person at all. That factor alone helps keep my car costs way down, but I wanted to know: how much does it really cost to own a used car for a...

How To Avoid Spending Your Savings

If you’re saving money, in an ideal world, you won’t spend it… but we don’t always live in an ideal world. This is a real-world approach to keeping your savings where you want them: in your bank account.

How to Budget for Non-Monthly Expenses

The one thing that can really throw a wrench in your monthly budget? Irregular expenses. Whether it’s an insurance payment, a medical purchase, a vet bill or something else entirely, here’s how to plan for them so you can handle them with ease.

What You Can Learn from Tracking Your Spending

I’ve learned a lot from tracking my spending, but these lessons early in the process really stood out—plus, I can confidently say they stand the test of time, since I’ve been tracking for almost three years now.

Is It Crazy to Cut Your Own Hair?

One of the weird frugal things that I actually enjoyed was starting to cut my own hair. I still do it, and am totally used to it, although I’m not sure I’ll do it forever. Here’s how I made the call to start.

Why I Wear The Same Thing Every Day

This one time, I went full Steve Jobs and decided to wear the same thing every day to work. Here’s why, what happened, and how much it cost (and yes, I’m a woman, and yes, it is possible for us to do this too).

If you made it this far, you’re a pro by now.

Time to start investing. Sign up to take my free, five-day email course to help you get started right here.