CELI 2024 Guide

Hello to all,

Are you taking full advantage of the Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA)? At the start of 2024, all Canadian residents aged 18 and over were granted an additional $7,000 in TFSA contribution room. Unlike RRSPs, TFSA contributions are not deductible. However, all income generated by investments and withdrawals is tax-free, hence the advantage and flexibility of the TFSA. So, for the vast majority of Canadians, the Tax-Free Savings Account is an essential part of their investment tax planning.

Here's our TFSA guide for 2024.

- What is the maximum amount?

All individuals residing in Canada and aged 18 or over can open and contribute to a TFSA. Since the plan's inception in 2009, here's a summary of TFSA contribution room over the years:

2009 5 000 $

2010 5 000 $

2011 5 000 $

2012 5 000 $

2013 5 500 $

2014 5 500 $

2015 10 000 $

2016 5 500 $

2017 5 500 $

2018 5 500 $  

2019 6 000 $

2020 6 000 $

2021 6 000 $

2022 6 000 $

2023 6 500 $

2024 7 000 $

As with RRSPs, unused contribution room can be carried forward indefinitely. For example, an individual who was at least 18 years old in 2009 and has always lived in Canada would have accumulated $95,000 in TFSA contribution room to date if he or she had never contributed.

- A withdrawal from the TFSA creates new entitlements the following year.

Since the TFSA is a very flexible plan, you can withdraw funds at any time without any tax consequences. Not only is there no tax on the withdrawal, but all amounts withdrawn create new contribution room for the following year. For TFSA holders who have already made one or more withdrawals, we recommend that you consult your My Account access on the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) website, or call CRA directly to obtain your exact contribution room.

-Be careful with excess contributions

It is very important not to contribute more than the maximum allowed, otherwise the individual will have to pay a tax equal to 1% per month on this excess. The TFSA is automatically subject to this special tax if there is an excess contribution in that month.  

-Spousal TFSA

Unlike RRSPs, it is not possible to contribute to a spouse's TFSA. However, it is possible to lend or give funds to your spouse, so that he or she can maximize his or her own TFSA. Since only the holder of a TFSA can make contributions, we recommend that you transfer the funds first, and then let the holder make his or her own contribution.


Since the introduction of the TFSA in 2009, many people have been asking the question: which RRSP or TFSA vehicle should I choose? A number of factors may come into play, so a rigorous analysis is essential before making a contribution to either of the 2 plans. Here are a few general points to help you make an informed decision when making your next contribution.

From a strict tax perspective, if the marginal tax rate on retirement (or on withdrawals) is lower than the marginal tax rate at the time of the contribution, you must opt for the RRSP. Otherwise, it is more beneficial to favour the TFSA. In the theoretical case where the rates are equal, the two regimes are equivalent. The reality is more complex than that. It can be particularly difficult to predict when and especially at what marginal tax rate a contribution will be withdrawn. In addition, a contribution to the RRSP, thereby reducing family net income, can allow a household to become eligible for certain tax credits. This is a significant aspect.

It is also necessary to settle on the possible use of the sums invested. If you plan to use these amounts for various short or medium-term projects, it is better to favour the TFSA. Not only would there be no tax impact upon withdrawal, but the amount of the withdrawals also create new contribution room the following year in the TFSA when they are lost at the RRSP level. However, if the funds are intended for retirement, it would be appropriate to opt for an RRSP, particularly in cases where the marginal tax rate during working years exceeds the retirement rate.

If in doubt, it is recommended that you consult a financial advisor. Our financial planning specialists can help you determine which TFSA or RRSP is the right choice for your financial situation.

-TFSA contribution deadline

There is no deadline for contributing to a TFSA. However, since your TFSA contributions grow tax-free, the earlier in the year you contribute, the more you'll benefit, assuming a bull market.  

-Borrowing to contribute

It is possible for an individual to borrow to invest in a TFSA, a so-called leveraging strategy. This option needs to be evaluated carefully, since everyone's financial profile is different. It is often more advantageous to save and eventually invest in a TFSA than to borrow. What's more, interest on the loan is not deductible.  

Do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions, our specialists can help you.