TORONTO: Starting a new life in Canada can be an overwhelming experience. You’re often filled with uncertainty and questions – from legal, to financial and beyond. To help get you started on the path to achieving your hopes and dreams in Canada, Munsif Sheraly, Director of Multicultural Banking at Scotiabank, has four important tips:
- Connect with resources that can help your family get settled: There can be so much to do when you arrive in Canada – find a home, a job, schools, a bank – it can be hard to know where to start. Scotiabank’s Newcomer Handbook gives you quick and easy access to things like: Government Information and assistance, jobs and careers, health, safety and your rights, education and training, Embassies in Canada and more.
- Open a Canadian bank account and build a good credit history: Whether it’s your first month, or your first year in Canada – your credit history is very important. It is a record of how well you have paid off past debts or loans. It starts from your first credit card purchase, loan or line of credit from a bank. Building a good credit rating will go a long way to help you meet your future financial goals, like securing a mortgage when buying a home. A variety of Scotiabank credit cards are available to let you earn rewards or cash back with low interest while building your Canadian credit history.
- Enrol your children in school: Public education is paid through your taxes and therefore is free and available to every child in Canada. Parents must pre-register their children (usually ages 4-17) as soon as you arrive at the school or school board office in your area. The Government of Canada website is a helpful resource.
- Plan for your future: You’ll soon find that you and your family have settled into a new routine in Canada and will start to think about long term goals – purchasing a home, putting money aside for your child’s education and investing in your retirement. Having a financial plan is an important element to take control of your finances. Scotiabank offers a Mapping Tomorrow tool that will see you meet with an advisor to create a customized plan for your future. The advisors offer practical advice and smart solutions to help you have the life you want in Canada.
The Scotiabank StartRight Program is designed to support newcomers who have been in Canada three years or less. It offers services ranging from opening accounts prior to arrival, to applying for credit cards and managing your money once you are in Canada. With more than 55 languages spoken in branches across Canada, Scotiabank is committed to helping newcomers make Canada feel like home.
To learn more about Scotiabank’s StartRight program for newcomers, visit Scotiabank.com/newtocanada.