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Financial Literacy Month-BMO's Tip of the Day: Housing Affordability and the One-Third Rule

TORONTO, ONTARIO -- (Marketwire) -- 11/11/12 -- To mark Financial Literacy Month, BMO Financial Group is releasing a series of financial tips throughout November. As part of BMO's commitment to 'Making Money Make Sense', the tips are designed to help individuals and families save and manage their day-to-day finances more effectively.

BMO's Tip of the Day: Stick to the one-third rule when planning the purchase of a home.

When assessing whether or not a new home is financially realistic, remember that housing costs - including mortgage payments, utilities and taxes - should not take up more than one-third of your total household income.

"If you can land safely within these parameters, then homeownership is an affordable and realistic option," said Laura Parsons, Mortgage Expert, BMO Bank of Montreal.

Ms. Parsons added that Canadians looking to buy a home should choose a shorter amortization, which will save homeowners thousands of dollars in interest over the life of the mortgage and ensure Canadians can begin building equity in their home faster.

For those looking to buy a home, try the BMO Mortgage Calculator to determine how much you can realistically afford.

"CFEE commends BMO's ongoing efforts to support Financial Literacy in Canada and promote ways in which Canadians can increase their competence and confidence when managing their personal finances on a day-to day-basis," said Gary Rabbior, President, Canadian Foundation for Economic Education (CFEE).

BMO Financial Literacy Month Tips

November 1: Maximizing TFSA investments annually over 20 years can save nearly $30,000 in taxes.

November 2: Utilize rewards to squeeze the most value out of every dollar you spend this holiday season.

November 3: Choose an investment advisor who is right for you and will help you meet your financial goals.

November 4: Use your RRSP to help make the down payment on your first home.

November 5: Space out payments to avoid cash-flow problems.

November 6: Take advantage of the benefits of preferred shares.

November 7: Consider investing in a Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) and taking advantage of tax incentives when saving for retirement.

November 8: Take advantage of Canada's numerous online personal finance resources.

November 9: Before you head off on your winter vacation, be sure you and your family are properly covered in the event of a medical emergency.

November 10: Understand what you can hold in your RRSP.

For more on financial literacy, Canadians can visit the Government of Canada's Financial Literacy Month website, as well as BMO's Financial Literacy online resource.

About BMO Financial Group

Established in 1817 as Bank of Montreal, BMO Financial Group is a highly diversified North American financial services organization. With total assets of $542 billion as at July 31, 2012, and more than 46,000 employees, BMO Financial Group provides a broad range of retail banking, wealth management and investment banking products and solutions.

Contacts:
Media Contacts:
Jessica Park, Toronto
(416) 867-3996
jessica1.park@bmo.com

Valerie Doucet, Montreal
(514) 877-8224
valerie.doucet@bmo.com

Laurie Grant, Vancouver
(604) 665-7596
laurie.grant@bmo.com

Internet: www.bmo.com
Twitter: @BMOmedia

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