Holistic, Goals-Based Wealth Planning

Using your unique goals as our benchmark, we provide comprehensive wealth planning advice and artfully integrate the vast resources of BMO Private Wealth. These include advanced tools, software, training, a wide range of products, wealth planning services, top-ranked research, and expertise from experienced professionals with top credentials.
BMO Private Wealth’s robust network of wealth planners bring you prompt solutions – you won’t be put on hold waiting for a consultation. We co-ordinate several professionals to work and communicate together as a cohesive group to offer customized solutions that help you achieve your life vision:

  • We help you articulate and prioritize your personal goals and plan tailored strategies to achieve them.

  • We advise you on the best ways to manage your assets, tax burden, risks and liabilities.

  • We bring a broad range of investment, banking, borrowing, and wealth planning capabilities and help maximize opportunities. Some examples include:

    • retirement planning,

    • cash flow planning,

    • succession planning,

    • tax minimization,

    • estate planning,

    • Wills and trust planning,

    • risk management,

    • capital preservation,

    • philanthropy, and

    • inter-generational planning and asset protection.

As our clients’ lives grow more complex and the markets more uncertain, we provide advice to help you achieve multiple goals, such as:

  • Preparing for known life stages as well as unknown life events,

  • Sustaining your lifestyle,

  • Retiring without worry,

  • Buying a vacation property or other major purchase,

  • Growing your business or practice,

  • Investing for your children’s education, and

  • Funding the rising healthcare cost of aging parents.

First, we will focus on addressing your immediate needs today. Then we will ensure that you have the right plans in place for retirement and other life milestones. Next, we will look at your estate plan.
Our team goes above and beyond:

  • We will ensure your Will and POAs are married to your Wealth Plan.

  • We shall work with our colleagues at BMO Trust Company to make sure there is a seamless transition into testamentary trusts that were written inside your Will where appropriate to further protect your assets and those of your heirs.

  • To add expertise outside our realm of specialty, when we do tax planning, Wills or estate matters, we will work with your own accountant and lawyer, or can introduce you to our trusted third-party lenders, lawyers and accountants.

Planning for Retirement Income

As people tend to live longer and medical care costs rise, we must think holistically about many considerations to plan for a secure retirement. Retirement income planning is at the heart of our advice.
Personal financial plans are created well in advance of retirement. By the time you approach retirement, we may adjust your portfolio to help generate a tax efficient, steady stream of retirement income – like a regular paycheque –  enabling you to maintain your current lifestyle. Navigating around the various income sources (such as CPP at 60 vs. 65, helping to avoid OAS clawbacks, taking RRIFs earlier than the age of 71) can be overwhelming and we simplify this process. Our primary concern is ensuring that you do not outlive your assets. It’s important to know that retirement cash flow is unique to each family’s situation.
Staying up-to-date with the latest in retirement planning capabilities, products, tools and services, we will:


  • Crunch the numbers to plan your retirement from work, based on a conservative and carefully calculated estimate of the income your portfolio will generate by a certain date.

  • Help you to understand what portfolio returns and retirement income you can realistically expect.

  • Plan for your expected spending patterns and expenses in retirement.

  • Discuss if you expect to inherit money, and how much.

  • Consider the impact of inflation, future tax rates, company pension income, other sources of income, and other contributing factors

  • Factor in your RRSP, LIFs, TFSAs, and CPP/OAS pension income.

  • Discuss possible health risks, longevity expectations,  potential additional housing and healthcare expenses to plan for the unexpected.


  • Considering all the points above, put together a really good cash-flow strategy for you that provides a steady flow of tax efficient income.

  • Adjust your portfolio as needed to maintain the required percentage rate of return.

  • Hold back the appropriate amount of tax as we go along to avoid a big nasty surprise at tax time.

  • Invest the remainder of your money so it keeps working well for you.

Multigenerational services

Always building multigenerational relationships with our clients’ families and adapting to meet the evolving needs, preferences and expectations of their sons, daughters and grandkids, we are well positioned to address everyone’s dynamic needs.

  • Your inheritors:

    • At a young age, we’ll help them to save up for a first car or first home and start to invest.

    • To ensure that, along with your assets, they inherit the principles and practices of responsible wealth stewardship, we will:

      • Start the relationship by learning their needs and goals.

      • Open an account for them, provide recommendations, and educate them on the fundamentals of investing, keeping the interaction enjoyable.

      • Work collaboratively and explain why certain “hot tip” investment ideas may be risky.

      • Help them move forward with informed decisions based on sound principles so they are not afraid of making mistakes and shy away from investing.

    • When they start a family, we will help them invest for their children’s education.

    • Eventually, we will guide them to manage the executor process for your estate, or engage BMO Trust Company to provide executor services.

    • Our commitment to stay ahead of industry trends resonates with the younger generation.

  • Your parents:

    • Seniors think differently from other investors and they’re serious about working with us to create an estate plan to leave more to their kids and/or charities and less to the CRA.

    • We understand seniors:

      • With decades of experience and specialized training on how to advise senior clients, we understand their mindset and the unique challenges of aging.

      • David Totten holds the Certified Senior Advisor (CSA®) designation from the Canadian Academy of Senior Advisors, which provides ongoing education and research on seniors and the dynamics of how certain factors impact their lives.

      • CSAs know what’s important to seniors and how to keep their interests first, communicate effectively with them and manage their complexities. 

      • If you’re a senior, talk to us about how we can have a dramatic impact on your portfolio for the benefit of your loved ones.