With the population of real estate franchise owners averaging over 55 years of age, it’s not surprising that a large number are increasingly concerned about cost effective retirement saving and succession planning. A relatively new retirement savings option that’s ideally suited to real estate brokers has emerged, but many people in the real estate industry don’t know about it.
The Personal Pension Plan (PPP) is a registered pension plan that is tailored for professionals looking for a better way to save for retirement. It is approved by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) and designed to make setting up a pension plan for a single person easy and inexpensive. The PPP is essentially an enhanced Individual Pension Plan (IPP) structured as a worry-free solution that solves many of the problems associated with conventional IPPs. For real estate professionals, it offers a more appealing alternative to RRSPs.
Unlike the more commonly known IPPs, the PPP is a combination pension plan – in fact, it’s the only combination individual pension plan available in Canada. It is specifically designed to help real estate professionals navigate the various economic cycles associated with running their business. It accomplishes this by providing a choice each year. In any given year the level of contributions can change as your financial situation dictates. This ensures that contributors can maximize their retirement savings, while minimizing corporate taxes, at every stage of their lives.
The PPP allows plan members to choose how to accrue retirement savings and avoid the large financial costs associated with mandatory defined benefit contributions. Clients can choose to fund their pension using a defined contribution option that alleviates the financial burden associated with funding an expensive defined benefit pension during a depressed economic cycle. Another benefit is the PPP, which is an indexed product, outperforms the conventional IPP in terms of tax deductions at any age, while the conventional IPP is designed only to benefit plan members who are over 40-years-old.
Here are just a few of the solutions the PPP offers to real estate professionals (brokers and agents who operate under a “mini-broker” program):
- Higher contribution levels than RRSPs – The PPP relies on the same federal and provincial pension legislation that governs conventional IPPs. However, since the plan’s structure relies on pension rules rather than RRSP rules, there is an ability to increase retirement savings by approximately $1 million above and beyond the RRSP maximums.
- New corporate tax deductions – The PPP generates new and additional tax deductions/savings that are not available to RRSPs: buying back past service, terminal funding, special payments and investment management fees.
- Robust creditor protection – Pension laws ensure all pension plan assets are trade-creditor protected. RRSP assets often do not receive the same protection.
- HST refund – Pension plan administrators can claim the 33 per cent HST refund that is not available to RRSP savers.
- Fiduciary oversight – The PPP’s pension provider, Integris Pension Management Corp., is legally obligated to act in plan members’ best interests. Practically, the provider negotiates service provider fee reductions, transfers group discounts to plan members and caps fees, among other things.
- Plan administration and compliance – Integris ensures member plans comply with provincial and federal legislation and completes and files all necessary documentation. The PPP model allows the client’s corporation to delegate plan administration and compliance responsibilities to Integris, thereby offering a simplified turnkey solution.
The new CRA-approved PPP is designed exclusively for business owners and incorporated professionals. It’s a powerful and flexible way to save for your retirement using a choice of three different sub-accounts that let you choose how to save your money in any given year.
Whether you’re a franchisee looking for a company plan for your management team, a family business owner wanting to set up a plan for your ownership group, or an incorporated professional, the PPP offers you the assurance and protection for your hard-earned money and assets to save for your retirement.
Isn’t it time real estate professionals got a chance to plan for retirement in style?