7 Ways to Save for your Child’s Post-Secondary Education #HeritageFunds RESP Savings Tips Series Part 2

RESP Savings Tips Part 2 @DownshiftingPRO #HeritageFunds

In the first post of the Heritage Funds RESP Savings Tips series, I discussed the staggering costs that we are dealing with as our eldest child entered the University of Ottawa this fall.  It was both cathartic and frightening to put pen to paper and numbers to calculations.  In our daughter’s quest for post-secondary education, we included the pre-selection trips to university campuses in Ontario.  They included visits to the University of Ottawa, University of Toronto, Queen’s University and Western University.  There is no small number of post-secondary institutions that you can attend in Ontario this is why we choose to stay within our home province.  Though we had considered McGill University and the University of British Columbia (both of our Alma Maters) as part of the mix, in the long run, we felt that having her in Ontario was the best option for our family.

As we roll out the costs, we know we have another child entering university in three years and our last child two years after that.  The expenses in the next few years will be substantial and we need to make plans for their success.  This task needs to be a process that involves all of us in one form or another all the while, considering changes to our lifestyle as well as putting together some sort of savings plan. For us, it may mean local vacations, fewer conferences, picking up more blogging assignments and working longer hours.  It also means the girls will be looking for full-time summer and part-time after school jobs to help with the costs.

7 ways to save for your child’s post-secondary education without incurring more debt:

1. Start early.

I cannot stress enough how important it is to save for your child’s education from the get-go.  It takes 18 years for them to get to university that is a long time to save even if it’s just a little bit every month. Starting when they’re young lets your money grow.  It’s called compound interest and if you read The Wealthy Barber in the 1990s you know that the formula is simple: save early and your money will grow and grow and grow.  I am not a financial advisor, so please take that into account, but there are people that can help you understand how all of this works.  Speaking to an RESP specialist will help you understand your options.

Read more