Financial Lessons

The Easy Way to Switch to TD e-Series RESP Funds

When our daughter came into the world two years ago, I knew I wanted to secure her financial future right away. After the initial whirlwind of sleepless nights, I decided to embark on the journey of setting up a Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) for her. I gave myself a few months to recover from the sleep deprivation, and then I made a crucial decision to visit my local TD branch.

Setting up an RESP for your child can be a daunting task, but the idea of harnessing the power of compounding interest excited me. So, I took a break from my mommy duties, sans baby, and walked into the bank to set up the RESP. Little did I know that this decision would set us on a path toward a brighter financial future for our daughter.

The Power of Starting Early

I met with a TD advisor who guided me through the process of setting up an RESP. We discussed my risk tolerance, which had understandably decreased in those postpartum months. I opted for a traditional mutual fund RESP, made an initial deposit, and set up a monthly pre-authorized purchase plan (PPP). With that done, I didn’t think much about it for the next year.

The Shift Towards TD e-Series

As our daughter grew and became more independent, I found myself with a bit more free time – precious minutes to think about our finances. At the top of my list was optimizing her RESP.

I was drawn to the idea of transitioning from a traditionally managed mutual fund to TD e-Series index funds. I wanted investment options that would closely track Canadian, U.S., and global markets. Our original choice, the TD Comfort Balanced Portfolio (TDB886), was a traditional mutual fund. Little did I know that making this switch would have a profound impact on the amount of money ultimately available for our daughter’s education.

The Case for Passive Investing

I’ve always believed in the power of passive investing, where you set up your investment strategy and let it ride. I’m not the type to obsessively check my accounts daily or panic over market fluctuations. I understand that the markets have their ups and downs, but over time, they tend to go up. This is where index funds come into play.

Our daughter is still quite young, so we have a long investment horizon before she’ll need access to the funds. With that in mind, we decided to take on a bit more risk. We planned to be more aggressive for the first few years, focusing on stock index funds. As she grows, we’ll introduce a bond index fund, specifically the Canadian Bond Index Fund e-Series (TDB909).

Switching to TD e-Series: My Experience

Before making the leap to TD e-Series, I did my homework. I read about others’ experiences online, some of which sounded like they’d gone through a financial maze. Armed with this knowledge, I approached the transition with a mix of preparedness and cautious optimism.

Here’s a step-by-step breakdown of how I successfully switched our RESP to TD e-Series index funds:

Step 1: Set up an appointment

I made an appointment with my local TD bank to meet with an investment advisor. I was upfront about my intention to switch from a traditional mutual fund account to an e-Series account. This transparency helped ensure I was paired with someone knowledgeable about the process.

Step 2: Bring your own application form

I printed the necessary application and consent form, just in case my branch didn’t have it readily available. It’s always better to be over-prepared.

Step 3: Come prepared with your ID

I brought my Social Insurance Number (SIN) and another piece of government ID, like my driver’s license, to the meeting.

Step 4: Meet with your advisor and fill out an investor questionnaire

If you haven’t completed an investor profile questionnaire recently, expect to do so during your appointment.

Step 5: Fill out the form at the appointment

After filling out the application form and signing various documents, I left the rest to my advisor. I went home, had a cup of coffee, and marveled at how smooth the process had been.

Step 6: Wait for 1-2 weeks

I patiently waited for my application to be processed. Within a week or two, I received a confirmation email stating that my application had been approved, and my account would be converted within one business day.

Step 7: Purchase funds

The next day, I could start purchasing TD e-Series index funds online.

That’s it! My experience was surprisingly hassle-free, but I was prepared for potential complications. If you’re considering the switch, stay persistent. The long-term benefits can make the initial frustration worthwhile. Plus, if you find a knowledgeable bank advisor like I did, hold onto them!

Investing with TD e-Series Index Funds

With our RESP account now converted, I’ll guide you through the online process of purchasing TD e-Series index funds. The TD website, while functional, can be less intuitive when it comes to e-Series funds. There’s no obvious portal, buttons, or easy-to-find information.

Here’s how to purchase TD e-Series index funds online:

Step 1: Sign into EasyWeb

After receiving your confirmation email and waiting for one business day, log in to EasyWeb.

Step 2: Access your existing mutual fund RESP

Your e-Series funds will be accessible within this account. Don’t expect to see a new RESP account created; you’ll use your existing account.

Step 3: Locate your existing mutual fund

Your old mutual fund, like the TD Comfort Balanced Portfolio, will still be visible. Don’t worry if things don’t look different yet; the conversion process has happened behind the scenes.

Step 4: Access the e-Series interface

In the left column under “Investments,” click on “Purchase Mutual Funds.” This is where you’ll find the e-Series options.

Step 5: Choose your fund category

Under “Fund Category,” you’ll see various options. To purchase index funds, select the category that matches your needs. For Canadian index funds, choose “Canadian equity.”

Step 6: Select your specific fund

In the “Fund” drop-down menu, choose the e-Series index fund you want, like “TD CDN Index-e.

Step 7: Purchase new funds

Click on “Purchase New Funds.” Enter the dollar amount you wish to invest, click “Next,” verify your selections, and click “I accept.” Congratulations, you’ve purchased your first e-Series index fund!

Repeat the process

Repeat these steps for U.S. and international index funds, adjusting the “Fund Category” and “Fund” selections accordingly.

Benefits of TD e-Series Index Funds

One major advantage of TD e-Series index funds is that there are no commissions for buying or selling. You can also set up Pre-Authorized Purchase Plans to automate your contributions, making it even more hands-off. The initial investment requirement is only $100 or greater, with a low minimum of $25 per fund per purchase for monthly contributions.

Final Thoughts

I’m not a financial advisor, and what worked for our family may not be suitable for everyone. Investment decisions should be based on thorough research and your individual financial situation. My aim in sharing this journey was to demystify the process of converting a TD mutual fund account into an e-Series account and simplify

it for you. Your financial goals and strategies may evolve over time, so always be open to adjustments and stay informed.

The Rewards of Investing in Your Child’s Future

Setting up an RESP with TD e-Series index funds is a long-term commitment that can significantly benefit your child’s education. As our daughter grows, we plan to add a bond index fund to further diversify our portfolio and manage risk effectively.

Conclusion: A Bright Future Awaits

In conclusion, the journey to convert our daughter’s RESP to TD e-Series index funds was surprisingly smooth and immensely rewarding. With a proactive approach, a supportive TD advisor, and a clear understanding of the process, we’ve positioned ourselves for a brighter financial future for our child.

Remember, investing is a personal journey, and your financial goals and risk tolerance will shape your strategy. I hope that sharing our experience has shed light on the process and encouraged you to take the next steps in securing your child’s educational future.

In the grand scheme of things, a bit of initial frustration can lead to a lifetime of financial security and opportunities for your child. So, whether you have a smooth transition like I did or encounter a few bumps along the way, keep your eye on the prize – a promising future for your loved ones through the power of TD e-Series index funds.

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