Oh hello… I’m back!

Hi guys,

Sorry for my extended absence. I actually did write another blog entry not that long ago, and some may have read it, but then I relegated to private status for a few reasons.

So, for those that haven’t heard from me in a while, here I am! There’s so much going on!

First, I got the position at work I was looking forward to for quite some time now! I’ll be the sole financial planner at two great downtown Calgary branches, and I couldn’t be happier about this! The two teams are really great, and I’m looking forward to working with them all next month.

But first, I’m off to BMO’s learning campus on Sunday for a week – It’s called the IFL, or Institute for Learning (but some people call it the Institute for Lunch due to the copious amounts of food they serve there). I’ll be in the Toronto area for a week this time, and a week in another few months as well. I’m looking forward to meeting fellow planners from throughout the country there who are all starting with BMO around the same time.

I’m thankful to have had two great years at this FI already, and in a similar role, so I will be able to hit the ground running when I step into the new branches in October. I’m itching to get on with it and the far superior compensation model that comes along with it.

As most of you know, Barry is also a planner with BMO, and he achieved “Rookie of the Year” a few years ago (rookie at BMO, not in the role, though) being number one in the country amoung 700 other planners. This coming year, I want to step into the same honor, so I’ll be working my butt off to make that happen. Wouldn’t it be awesome for us both to have done it? Better yet, I’d love for him to also achieve number one again next year so that we can both be on the podium. I’m sure that would be a first. Who knows… It’s possible.

Things at home have been great, too! We have sold our hot tub and gazebo (the hot tub has had a leak, so we sold it at an extreme discount) – we travel so much that the hot tub was not used as much as we’d like. Also, Barry is NOT a fan of the hot tub, but was a good sport about repairing if I had wanted to keep it. In the end, we’ve decided to improve our back deck (likely ripping down the old and putting in a new larger deck that allows for a gas fire pit and sitting area). Bottom line, there’s a ton more light in the kitchen now, because the gazebo doesn’t cover the main kitchen window… It’s quite nice!

There’s so much more, but I will leave it to another update. I’ll probably blog from the IFL next week, so stay tuned!

YOUR TURN: How’s life? What’s new?


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    Oh, I forgot to add… because the last post is private, you may not have heard, if we’re not friends on Facebook — I have my PFP AND CFP designations now! I’m done with study for a while. Yippee!

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    GregM says

    Hey Tanya, congrats on your CFP – I literally just wrote my FPE1 this morning – not sure if I passed or not – but I am never sure and so far its all worked out. Takes 5 weeks to get our marks back – whats up with that! Anyway, I was wondering how you found the capstone course – was it difficult? There was a guy writing his FPE2 at our location today and said it was reallly hard and he barely passed after spending about 40 hours and 45 pages of info on it. Did you find that the same? Any tips on it? As well did you find the AFP2 and the FPE2 the same in terms of difficulty?

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    GregM says

    Also the capstone courses apparently have a small 25 question test that go with it – is that the same format as the CSIs other courses?

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    Sometimes a hot tub (like a pool) is not the best option for homeowners for any number of reasons, but the number one reason is usually frquency of use. Those who use theirs regularly love them!

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    Hi GregM – I’m so sorry I missed responding to your posts above! I’m not sure how I missed that.

    As far as the Capstone Course was concerned, it was easy. If you have access to NaviPlan, use it, and take screenshots of all the detailed cash flow statements etc. Also, I did mine through CSI, and after jumping through a few hoops they give you a sample plan to work with – that made it super easy as you know exactly what they want to see.

    AFP2 is not nearly the same difficulty as FPE2. You really, really need to know your materials, and there’s only one VERY LONG case study with the test. Plan your time accordingly. Remember to answer what they are asking and not necessarily solutions – that’s my number one tip. If they are asking for considerations, give them that. Only answer the number of options, and not more… they’ll be ignored when the examiner is marking.

    I hope that helps! Let me know how you do!

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    GREGm says

    Hey thanks for the tips a while back. I ended up passing the FPE1 though they didn’t give me a mark – only pass or fail – so I am not sure how well I did. I then wrote the capstone through CSI and passed by the skin of my teeth – which sucks considering its the most applicable course I have taken – but it was a good experience and I won’t complain too hard about a pass. Now I write the FPE2 in June. I ordered the Foran Practice Exams for the FPE2 and will spend a lot of time looking over the free FPSC cases. Any other advice? I know you mentioned the advocis case studies you found of a PDF – were they helpful. How long did you study for the FPE2? Thanks again for any info – this is the only blog I can find about writing this thing and its been very helpful – I am sure there are a lot of CFP exam takes who you have helped. Thanks again!


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