Who We Are
Our goal here at Smith Consulting Group Ltd. is to ensure every Canadian homeowner from coast to coast is at least aware of The Smith Manoeuvre and therefore in a position to educate themselves on the strategy and make an informed decision as to whether this strategy is right for their family. With taxation, inflation and the high cost of homeownership, it is not easy out there…and it doesn’t seem like it will be getting any easier anytime soon. But if we Canadians become knowledgeable in personal finance we have the opportunity to improve our financial security. And as far as we’re concerned, a better-off Canadian is a better off Canada.
ROBINSON SMITH operates Smith Consulting Group Ltd, out of Sidney, B.C, on Vancouver Island. Robinson has an extensive history in the investment space, both international and retail. Robinson has a double major in Chinese and Economics from the University of Victoria and an MBA in International Business from Simon Fraser University.
After taking his father’s wise advice to study mandarin Chinese at the University of Victoria, Robinson spent a total of just over seven years studying and working in China in sectors as diverse as contracts with the Canadian Foreign Service in Beijing, project development, and investment banking where he served as Vice President for The Balloch Group, a boutique international investment bank based in Beijing founded by the former Canadian Ambassador to China.
Robinson joined his father, Fraser, at Smith Consulting Group Ltd. back in early 2006 when he returned to Canada from Asia in order to be closer to family (his mother missed him…) and began to take over the family business. Robinson has since been advising hundreds of families on the implementation of The Smith Manoeuvre and there is no one better positioned to continue with the firm’s mission statement.
The Man behind it all, FRASER SMITH was a financial strategist based in Victoria, British Columbia. He pioneered The Smith Manoeuvre, a ground-breaking, legal strategy that enables ordinary Canadian homeowners to make their mortgages tax deductible in a simple, elegant, and affordable way.
In 1981, Smith and partners founded the Granville West Group, a prominent financial services entity in Vancouver. In 1991, Fraser went on to form the Smith Consulting Group Ltd. and KittyHawk Securities, and practiced financial planning until 2002.
As a financial planning strategist, Smith saw that many of Canada’s wealthier citizens, with the assistance of expensive tax accountants and lawyers, were deducting the interest on their house mortgage loans. Smith also knew that because of complexity and cost, these kinds of practices were not available to Canadians of average means – the other 90% of the population.
He also saw that too many Canadians were waiting until their mortgages were paid off before they started to build an investment portfolio, missing out on years of compounding interest, and putting themselves in the position of being house rich and cash poor in retirement.
With this in mind, Fraser set out to learn about the rules of tax deductibility. He already knew that wealthy Canadians were manoeuvering their debt and taxes to deduct their mortgage interest and build investments. He was certain those tax tools could also be employed in some way by mortgage holders of modest means, and he was right.
Upon retirement from the financial planning business in late 2002, Smith decided to write his book to extend the benefits of The Smith Manoeuvre to all Canadians with mortgages. It is his gift to over-taxed, hard-working Canadians. Smith passed away in September of 2011 but the legacy lives on in his son, Robinson, who manages the business and continues his father’s Mission Statement: “To give every Canadian with a mortgage the opportunity to say ‘Yes’ to the question, ‘Would you like to make your mortgage tax deductible?’”
LUANN OLSON is the Vice President of Administration of Smith Consulting Group Ltd. has been an important part of The Smith Manoeuvre for over 20 years handling the administrative, accounting and innumerable other aspects of the business.
She is a native of St. Catharines, Ontario, but calls the West Coast of Canada home. In a previous life, LuAnn was in the air services and flight management sector and her skills in keeping everyone moving have transferred well over to the financial services industry as she has been instrumental in keeping the firm fuelled, maintained and in ensuring no one flies into each other.