Taxes! While most people hate them, I’m the strange type that enjoys optimizing tax strategies.  Surprisingly, I’m not alone in this.  Fellow blogger, Mark Goodfield from The Blunt Bean Counter, is an expert in the field of tax planning and has put together his first book “Let’s Get Blunt About Your Financial Affairs.”

About the Author

While I know Mark Goodfield as the blogger behind The Blunt Bean Counter, in his professional life, he is an accountant with a bunch of fancy designations after his name (CPA, CA LPA).  The book explains his credentials a bit better:

Mark Goodfield has been a Chartered Professional Accountant for over 25 years.  He is a tax, business and financial advisor who brings a wide range of experience and insight to private corporations, their shareholders/owner managers and individuals.  He is the author of The Blunt Bean Counter, a popular blog that shares advice on income taxes, finance, and the psychology of money.  In 2014, Mark won the Platus Award for the Best Tax Blog in Canada and the U.S.  Mark frequently speaks on financial, tax and estate planning matters for various small business groups and professional associations, and is often quoted by various national newspapers and financial publications.

About The Book

For this book, Mark has put together a collection of his best blog posts.  While you would expect the book to be 100% about tax, it’s actually much more broad than that.

The topics covered include:

  • Executors
  • Inheritances, wills and estates
  • The psychology of money
  • Audits and being audited
  • Tax topics
  • RRIFs and RRSPs
  • Family assets – Dividing, Sharing and Taxing
  • Retirement – How much do I need?
  • Estate freezes
  • The family cottage
  • Proprietorship’s, corporations, holding companies and family trusts

I enjoy Mark’s blunt writing style as it is easy to understand and straight to the point.  I especially enjoyed his piece on “Stress Testing Your Spouse’s Financial Readiness If You Were to Die Suddenly” as I had the same thoughts when I wrote “Letter to My Wife – How Our Finances Work.”  Mark is one of those guys that just “knows a lot of stuff” and is one of the first people I think of when I have a tax question.

Want a Free Copy?

As you can see from the picture I took above, Mark gave me three copies of his book.  I’m keeping one for my bookshelf, but giving away the other two.  Who wants in?

I am offering Million Dollar Journey readers the chance to win a free copy of the book (2 copies available).  The details are below:

  1. Tell me about one of your financial achievements thus far in 2015 in the comments. (+1 entry)
  • Only one comment entry per person (valid email addresses only please – privacy policy).
  • Giveaway will end Sat 5pm EST Nov 28, 2014 and the winners, drawn randomly, will be contacted shortly after!

Good luck!


  1. Gene on November 24, 2015 at 2:02 pm

    Sounds like a very interesting book. This year both my wife and I maxed out our TFSAs!

  2. Pinder J on November 24, 2015 at 2:39 pm

    Ok, seriously, I love the Blunt Bean Counter Blog! Excellent writing style! Financial accomplishments: This year, I fully funded and maxed out all investments RRSP, TFSA’s No debt, no mortgage and living my dream life as a critical care flight nurse. Saving money to prepay for my masters degree in nursing, which I hope to start in September. Life is amazing! Thanks to all the amazing bloggers who share their knowledge! Keep up the amazing work! Nursepkj

  3. Derrick Goulet on November 24, 2015 at 4:01 pm

    After reading about Mark’s book, I went to Chapter’s Book store to buy it. To my disappointment, the book was not listed with them. This year I’m helping my 19 year old son open a trading account and TFSA. I want to continue to teach him the value of investing. One of the best idea’s I passed on to my kids was to think of something you want to buy not in dollars, but in hours worked (after taxes). For example, if your teenager makes $15/hour after taxes and they want to buy something for $150, they should ask themselves if working for 10 hours to pay for the item is worth it? You will find they become better managers of their money.

  4. Paul on November 24, 2015 at 5:56 pm

    Loyal follower of the Blunt Bean Counter, great blog! Two payments remain to convert mortgage in Smith Maneuver!

  5. Northeast on November 24, 2015 at 7:50 pm

    My biggest achievement was inspired by one of your posts (Letter to My Wife): I started a succession planning workbook.

  6. AL on November 24, 2015 at 9:08 pm

    I am Mortgage Free in 2015

  7. AL on November 24, 2015 at 9:56 pm

    I am proud to say I am Mortgage Free this year

  8. SM on November 24, 2015 at 10:30 pm

    The book sounds great. This week I finally got the nerve up to move a large sum out of cash savings and into the market. Scary stuff!

  9. Jamie on November 24, 2015 at 10:53 pm

    Maxed out my wife RRSP in 2015. Hoping to do the same with mine in 2016.

  10. Susan A on November 25, 2015 at 9:31 am

    I retired two years ago and am glad I have been successfully frugal throughout the year.

  11. bill on November 25, 2015 at 11:30 am

    My mortgage has been paid off for several years. Saved some cash after bad divorce. I’m moving on with someone else who I adore. Bought a small 1 bedroom condo in florida for $15,000.00. It was a no brainer. Fees are low, taxes are 1/4 of what I pay in Alberta for a small bungalow, insurance with decent hurricane/storm coverage is inexpensive. The American dollar is eating up some of our cash but we expected it. Took Canada Pension this month at age 60. Seemed like the right thing to do mathematically. Will be retiring from the power company in two to three years with a reasonably good pension. Will be looking into health situation with regards to what coverage there is after retirement, the cost of medicines are very expensive even for the generics. We are considering selling the house as we don’t need a small bungalow to live in but a park model trailer on a lake somewhere sounds good. The economy here in Alberta has taken a turn for the worst as it has throughout the world so I’m thinking that the price of real-estate will come down 10 or so percent from it’s over inflated prices. If the health stays reasonable, I think life will be good. We’ll see!

  12. Joe on November 25, 2015 at 9:58 pm

    Sounds kinda funny but I originally got the idea from The Motley Fool. In 2015 I’ve been trying to consciously make ONE great investment everyday. Whether it be in the markets, my job, paying off a credit card balance, buying a case of beer or simply just reading a book to my son. ONE great investment everyday. Have a good one everyone.

  13. Ramona on November 25, 2015 at 11:03 pm

    Mark Goodfield? Tax GOD! Nope, he didn’t pay me to say that, but since I’m a fellow accountant, I really appreciate Mark’s take on tricky (icky) subjects. Amusing, sassy and right on.

    Honestly my financial world basically just runs itself now. Always work with a budget, always have goals and plans, work hard to achieve it all.

  14. ig on November 25, 2015 at 11:24 pm

    We had saved for a major family vacation that we took this summer. Would appreciate the book.

  15. David Bogart on November 26, 2015 at 1:46 am

    Walmart is on sale, puchased 100 shares. ( for the long term )
    Will continue to invest in the U.S. and continue to purchase Canadian Oil stocks.

  16. Daryl on November 26, 2015 at 11:53 am

    This year we built up an emergency fund and also took our after tax savings rate from 3% to 13%.

  17. Aditya on November 26, 2015 at 4:24 pm

    Ugh… procuring a scholarship so I don’t have to dip into my savings to pursue graduate studies? Finances are hard when you’re a student :/

  18. rob on November 26, 2015 at 7:34 pm

    Finally, got the right investments moved into the right accounts. Wouldn’t have even known about the tax difference between Canadian ETF’s holding a US-listed ETF of US stocks vs a US-listed ETF holding US stocks (VUN vs VTI) in our RRSP’s if it weren’t for my getting interested in self investing through MDJ. (Hint – you are not subject to US withholding tax if you buy the right one). Just a little tax tip in keeping with the theme and hope to win the book so I can learn more…

  19. R on November 26, 2015 at 7:43 pm

    One of my biggest financial achievements in 2015 was to max my TFSA contributions by purchasing low-cost index funds (TD e-series).

    Great blog and I look forward to reading Mark’s new book.

  20. MissJelic on November 27, 2015 at 10:56 am

    I have started regularly spending time enhancing my financial knowledge (I put this in my calendar as an appointment I can’t miss). I spend the time reading blogs like this one (great blog!), reading books, researching investment ideas, etc.

  21. Emily on November 27, 2015 at 12:13 pm

    I would love to read this book! We paid off $10,000 in consumer debt and bought our second vehicle (used) with cash. Expecting baby #3, both of these achievements will help tremendously in keeping 2016 as stress free as possible :)

  22. Chuck on November 27, 2015 at 12:46 pm

    I applied for and received permanent residence status in a known tax haven. Time to start sticking it to Trudeau and Wynne.

  23. Raymond on November 27, 2015 at 2:30 pm

    For this year, I’ve been able to max out my TFSA and contribute 5000$ to my RRSP, which was my target amount.

    I’d really like to win the book as I like Mark’s writing on the blog.

  24. John on November 27, 2015 at 5:56 pm

    Increased family’s net worth by about 20% in 2015… with three kids under 6 :-)

  25. Jeane on November 27, 2015 at 9:08 pm

    I have opened an account at Qestrade for ETF indexing investment.

  26. Jeremy on November 28, 2015 at 9:03 am

    Just started my financial overhaul this year but my spouse and I were able to streamline our household expenses onto one credit card and reassessed our spending habits. So far, we’ve managed to reduce our expenses by around 30%.

  27. Matt on November 28, 2015 at 10:20 am

    Maxing out my 2 boys resp while sheltering my money for another 18 years

  28. UndergroundWoman on November 28, 2015 at 11:29 am

    Managed to max out my TFSA and RRSP for the year plus do some non-registered investing for the first time this year. Love the blunt bean counter blog!

  29. Harry on November 28, 2015 at 2:03 pm

    This year, I finally reached my target asset allocation.

  30. Len on November 28, 2015 at 5:56 pm

    Thanks for the review. Been of a fan of his blog for a while but did not know he was writing a book.

    My big financial achievement this year is making a budget (using YNAB) and sticking to it. Getting a control over my finances has not only been rewarding monetarily but it also feels great to know where the money is going every month and to see the savings start to accumulate.

  31. Jeff on November 29, 2015 at 5:55 am

    I’d love love free copy of the book! This year me and my wife maxed all of our rrsp,tfsa, resps. We are also looking on putting a lump sum on the mortgage before years end.

  32. Thisbe on November 29, 2015 at 6:56 pm

    This year I have maxed out my monthly mortgage payments.

  33. Mitch on November 29, 2015 at 9:26 pm

    This was a big year for us financially as my wife and I both retired at 32. RRSPs, TFSAs, and kids RESPs are maxed out. Bought a new house with no mortgage and we just had our second child. This book sounds very interesting, I’ll have to check it out at the library.

    • Hetty on November 29, 2015 at 10:06 pm

      Hey Mitch, that’s what I did too..the library in Calgary doesn’t have it, but I requested it to order. Sounds like you did pretty well for you and your family!

  34. Scott on November 30, 2015 at 6:15 pm

    Sounds like a book that I’d like to read. I managed to hit six digits invested this year!

  35. Glenn on February 10, 2016 at 1:09 pm

    My top financial achievement this past year has been to get set-up an online, discount brokerage account for my 11 year old Son. He has become more interested in saving Christmas and Birthday money he receives to purchase stocks; something that I believe will serve him well in the future. I only wish someone had shared this with me when I was his age!

  36. John Neale on February 10, 2016 at 3:21 pm

    Managed to keep maxed on TFSA even though on pension

  37. Sandra on February 11, 2016 at 9:28 am

    My best financial success this past year was to max my TFSA (yes all $10,000 worth), plus I maxed my RRSP contributions.

  38. Art on February 13, 2016 at 1:50 pm

    Max out 401k and roth ira this year is my goal

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