Apple Pay and Interac Together

Is this a good thing is the question to be answered, but later on in this I will discuss that. I have written about Apple Pay and Near Field Communication (NFC) before, but now it seems to be really will be usable in Canada, with Interac announcing an agreement with Apple on using this technology.


NFC an interesting idea?

Before you leave this page to go set this up remember there are a few limiting factors here:

  1. You need an iPhone 6 series (or above) or a later iPad series (although who would wander around with an iPad to buy things). The Apple Watch also supports this, but it ends up being “attached” to an iPhone as well.
  2. You need a bank account that you can access via Interac (figured I’d point that one out, just in case you were not sure).
  3. For the Interac part, you need to have an account with RBC or CIBC. CLANG!!! I knew there was going to be a catch.
  4. It also works with Amex cards, ATB Mastercards and Canadian Tire Mastercards

OK, so the title is a little bit misleading, as only a few banks are covered here.

The real question, is NFC (Near Field Communication) a good thing? Depends on who you ask. If you read the link I supplied you will know:

NFC is a set of short-range wireless technologies, typically requiring a separation of 10 cm or less

Sounds perfectly safe, doesn’t it? PC World has a very good article about a few steps to take if you are going to use this technology (the reading the fine print and your agreement on use of the technology). The other thing to remember is if you are going to use this technology, your phone had better be secured (i.e. password locked, at least).

It will be interesting to see how well this whole thing works, now that it is more in general usage (in Canada).


For a while it has miffed me that every time I have ranted about PayDay Loan places, Google Adsense (my major advertiser) decides that the article should be surrounded by advertising for those very same PayDay Loan places, but evidently this will be changing! Google will be removing PayDay Loans from their Adwords networks, but I remain skeptical. My guess is that the High Risk Loan industry will just market themselves in a different manner, but, good on Google for taking this step (wouldn’t it be nice if the CRTC did the same thing for those ads on TV?).

Full Moon

Will This Be a Bad Moon Rising?

Are you curious whether your boss or your neighbors (or even family) are mentioned in the Panama Papers? Now, you, can search and see what is going on at ICIJ Offshore Leaks. Yes, I did search, but none of my relations seem to be mentioned. As I have mentioned, I aspire to be in that kind of a database (i.e. having that much money).

Fort MacMurray is still under threat of forest fires, but it is good to hear the damage to the city is not as extensive as it might have ended up. Remember you can donate to help at many different outlets (including most on-line banking web sites).

I didn’t realize that there are over 500 Billionaires (with a ‘B’) in the United States. #TIL

My Writings for Week Ending May 13th

I guess the fires in Fort Mac had me thinking about house insurance and claims, and thus the two posts from this week were in that area.

Home Insurance Gotchas was from my archive of unfinished stories, outlining the importance of making sure you are always following the rules of your Home Insurance Policy. If you think something is covered by your policy, it never hurts to ask your agent whether it is covered or not (finding out later it is not, is a likely outcome if you do not ask).

In Home Insurance Follow Up I point out again, that exceptional things in your house need to be identified in your Home Insurance Policy, or you may not get them replaced, should there be a fire at your home. Ask your agent if you are not sure what is or is not covered (I do seem to be repeating myself here).

Evidently in Ottawa there is a full moon tonight, and it is Friday the 13th as well, for those interested in that type of stuff.

Where do Bitcoins Come From Mommy?

For those curious, here is a tweet about where some of them come from.

[click to continue…]


Home Insurance Follow Up

I wrote about Home Insurance Gotchas, and in it, I outlined how you need to tell your Insurer (for your home) about anomalies in your coverage like expensive jewelry, art or changes to your home. For long time readers you will also remember I have written (or paraphrased from Tom Clancy) if it is not written down, how do you know it happened? Let me take these two articles together to make a point when dealing with insurers, if you don’t write it down, and they don’t acknowledge your statement, you may not be covered.

Home Insurance

Home Insurance are you really covered ?

This advice is simply, better safe than sorry, in terms of thematic premises. As an example, if you have a comic book collection that you think is worth $4500 in terms of replacement cost, you should:

  1. Get an estimate done by an authoritative appraiser, about the real value of the set.
  2. Call your insurer, and fax them the appraised value
  3. Wait for whether they will insure this and whether they will charge you a higher premium for this privilege
  4. Pay whatever extra premiums are needed, and get an updated policy from your insurer, which mentions your comics and their current value
  5. Any time you feel your collection has increased in value, contact your insurer and start at step (1) again
  6. If you sell your collection, contact your insurer to have it removed from your policy.

If you miss any of these steps (maybe not step (6)), you may not be insured or covered they way you think you are.

Before I get my insurance friends slamming me about how I am being anti-Insurance (which at times I have been) this is more a Caveat Emptor statement. If you want the insurance business to work for you, you must abide by their rules (unfortunately).

Image courtesy of fantasista at


Home Insurance Gotchas

A CBC story of a local woman, who was in Ottawa for Cancer treatment and got a rude surprise from her home insurance policy (when she got home), highlights the importance of reading your entire insurance policy and understanding all of the “ins and outs” of your policy.

The lady was in Ottawa for cancer treatment, and left a neighbour to check her mail, but the neighbour never went into the house. Since the poor woman was undergoing cancer treatment, she was away from her home for more than three days, and unfortunately her furnace “scrammed” (i.e. turned off, to protect itself), the house froze, the pipes exploded and her insurance company is now saying, she is not covered. Sounds awful doesn’t it, but the same thing is true of your home policy as well, go read it and you will see that if you are away from your home for a period of 2 days or more (especially in the winter) if no one checks your house, any damage done to your home is your own responsibility.

Home Insurance

Home Insurance is Important, but if it doesn’t pay out, that is a bad thing

The CBC was also kind enough to post a good article 6 Big Home insurance Misconceptions, that is well worth reading, but I will paraphrase some of the areas they cover in their article.

  • Rare or exceptional things in your house are covered under your insurance. No, unless you have told your insurance company about art, jewelry, or other cool things, your fancy things may not be covered under your home insurance policy. If you tell them, they will most likely raise your rates, but at least you will be covered.
  • Sewer backups, floods, earthquakes and maybe even forest fires are covered. Maybe, but you had better see that they are explicitly mentioned in your policy (yes read your entire policy). If they are not mentioned, ask your insurance provider the exact question, to ensure you are in fact covered, or you may get a rude surprise. Basement sewer backups were covered, but not necessarily any more. Will the city pay? If they think it is their fault, maybe.
  • If you are not taking care of your house, and that neglect causes damage to your house (and it can be proven), you might end up paying for the damage yourself. Keep your property well maintained.
  • Did you upgrade your house? Did you finish the basement, and did you tell your insurer it is now “finished”? If you added a room, is your insurer aware of it? If the answer is “no”, do you think they will pay out? They might, but it is better to be clear with your insurer, than hope they do something out of the goodness of their hearts™.

Also remember with home insurance, 3 Strikes and You are Out, so careful what you make a claim on (as well). Check with your insurer, and read your policy closely.

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at


Fort Mac, Mothers and #MoneyTalk

Our thoughts and hopes for a better day are with the folks in Fort McMurray and the areas around that are being devastated by forest fires. Now is not the time to be partisan, now is the time to support our fellow Canadians:

Click Here to Give to the Red Cross’ Alberta Fire Appeal


The Ultimate Mother, “Gran” from Giles

You can also text “REDCROSS” to 30333, which results in an immediate $5 donation to the fund. Canadians stand together against this kind of devastation.

For those of  us not directly affected, maybe it is time to check your home insurance policies to see whether this kind of event is covered or not? It would be less than prudent not to do that right now. I wonder what this might do to home insurance rates?

Not sure how you could be unaware Sunday is Mothers Day, but it is time for you to remember the woman that was (and might still be) the center of your world. The one that guided you to where you are today. For those who no longer have their Mother, my sympathies, for those who still have their Mother, what are you going to do for Mom on Sunday? Why do you have to wait until Sunday to do it?

New fathers remember this advice I gave a while ago

A helpful hint for new Fathers out there, you may have the idea that your wife is NOT your Mother so you don’t need to get her anything, you are mistaken. She is your children’s mother, and if you don’t get her something expect a very cold and quiet Sunday (and the argument, “You aren’t MY Mother!”, really seems to exacerbate the whole thing), not that I am speaking from personal experience.

My Writings for Week Ending May 6th

A lovely spring week in Ottawa, with the Tulips starting to bloom (the squirrels have eaten mine already), but some interesting articles written as well.

With Fees and Penalties I wondered if some existing fees might disappear like the rewind fees on VHS tapes? I somehow doubt many are going away any time very soon.

Debt Consolidation and Tattoo Coverups has me making a connection between bad tattoos and debt (remember I have previously said that Debt is Like Fat and Debts are Like Weeds), and I think the point is well put.

A Money Thought

Don’t buy stuff just because it is on sale! –Anon

👇 For more great financial articles from this week click here 👇


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