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-- With the March 1 deadline quickly approaching, TD Waterhouse's Patricia Lovett-Reid offers advice for Canadians who are still on the sidelines when it comes to their RSP contribution --

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TORONTO, Feb. 22 /CNW/ - Tax-deferred savings. A bigger tax refund. A more comfortable retirement. Despite the many reasons to contribute to your RSP before the March 1 deadline, many Canadians may still be on the fence when it comes to deciding if they will make a contribution.

"Whether you are just starting your career, nearing retirement, or are at any point in between, RSPs are essential for building the financial foundation for a great retirement," says Patricia Lovett-Reid, Senior Vice President, TD Waterhouse Canada Inc. "Making an RSP contribution is the single greatest retirement-savings and tax-deferral tool available to most Canadians. It's also one of the best ways to generate a tax refund, which you can use to make a payment on your mortgage, reduce your debt or contribute to a Tax-Free Savings Account."

If certain circumstances like existing debt or a lack of savings are making you hesitate about whether you can make a contribution this year, Lovett-Reid offers the following advice:

1. You have some (or a great deal of) debt.

You don't need to be debt-free to start saving for your future. If you do a bit of both, paying down debt and saving for your retirement, you will likely be better off in the long run.

2. You don't have money to make a contribution.

Consider borrowing to invest in your future. Borrowing to contribute to RSPs can be a good choice financially as it increases retirement savings and your investments will grow tax-deferred. Speak with a financial advisor to see if this strategy is right for you: there are RSP loans available, and you can also use a line of credit to make your contribution.

3. It's almost the deadline and you don't have much money set aside.

This year make a contribution (no matter how small) before the deadline. But next year, don't wait until the last minute. Take advantage of a pre-authorized purchase plan and see how regular investments can compound over time, allowing your retirement savings to grow.

4. Even if you contribute throughout the year, it won't add up to a significant amount.

Every dollar counts: even if you don't have much discretionary income, it's still worth contributing. Through the power of compound interest you may have generated more savings than you expect when it's time to stop working. And don't forget: as your income or expenses change, it's essential to adjust your savings.

5. You don't know exactly how you want to invest your RSP contribution.

Contribute now and decide what to invest in later. Temporarily park your money in a cashable GIC or a daily interest savings account before the deadline, and then take the time to decide exactly what you want to do with it. Don't forfeit the tax incentive by waiting for next year simply because you can't decide how to invest.

"Speak to a financial advisor you trust about how you can build a balanced investment portfolio that gives you the rate of return you need to achieve true financial success," says Lovett-Reid. "You deserve it."

On Friday, February 25, Lovett-Reid will be tweeting tips and answering questions about RSPs during @TD_Canada #RSPFridays on Twitter. To view videos containing advice for planning your retirement and contributing to your RSPs, visit TD's YouTube page at

For more information on planning for your retirement visit

About TD Bank Group

The Toronto-Dominion Bank and its subsidiaries are collectively known as TD Bank Group (TD or the Bank). TD is the sixth largest bank in North America by branches and serves approximately 19 million customers in four key businesses operating in a number of locations in key financial centres around the globe: Canadian Personal and Commercial Banking, including TD Canada Trust and TD Insurance; Wealth Management, including TD Waterhouse and an investment in TD Ameritrade; U.S. Personal and Commercial Banking, including TD Bank, America's Most Convenient Bank; and Wholesale Banking, including TD Securities. TD also ranks among the world's leading online financial services firms, with more than 6 million online customers. TD had CDN$620 billion in assets on October 31, 2010. The Toronto-Dominion Bank trades under the symbol "TD" on the Toronto and New York Stock Exchanges.

TD Waterhouse represents the products and services offered by TD Waterhouse Canada Inc. (Member of the Canadian Investor Protection Fund), TD Waterhouse Private Investment Counsel Inc., TD Waterhouse Insurance Services Inc., TD Waterhouse Private Banking (offered by The Toronto-Dominion Bank) and TD Waterhouse Private Trust (offered by The Canada Trust Company).

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