In the dark about stocks and RRIFs

Question: I became 69 years of age in March and I realize I must close my RRSPs by the end of the year but one of them is in the form of stocks which I guess must be sold. I assume this would be very costly to me in terms of income tax/capital gains etc. unless there is a way of converting the stock funds to a RRIF or could the stock be kept (it happens to be doing very well at the moment). I’m afraid I am totally in the dark -help!! – M.L.


Good news. There is no reason why you need to sell the stocks until you want to. Simply convert all your RRSPs, including the one based on equities, into a self-directed RRIF. That type of plan allows you to hold any type of qualified security, in the same way as a self-directed RRSP.

I suggest that before you make the conversion, you read a copy of The Complete Guide to RRIFs and LIFS, which I co-authored. It explains everything you need to know and, once you are finished, you will no longer be “in the dark – G.P.