(NC)—Every year, parents’ nests across Canada empty as a new group of freshman students head off to post-secondary institutions. Before your child flies the coop, you may want to start taking steps to answer this question: How will I pay for my child’s post-secondary education?
The key: a financial plan.
“Many parents struggle with rising education costs and competing demands for their hard-earned money,” says Cary List, president and CEO, Financial Planning Standards Council (FPSC). “A financial plan can help parents be prepared, and may eliminate a few sleepless nights.”
A study conducted by FPSC (the not-for-profit organization that awards the certified financial planner designation) found that 74 per cent of Canadians who said they have a comprehensive financial plan reported feeling closer to the goal of funding their children’s education, as compared with only 19 per cent of those without financial plans.
That being said, a financial plan won’t eliminate the dirty laundry that freshman students will inevitably bring home over March Break.
Expert Tip: “Funding post-secondary education can be achieved with solid financial planning, although each family’s situation may call for unique strategies,” says Jeanette Brox, a certified financial planner at Investors Group. “One approach is to consider education savings as a joint effort between the child, parents and government. Teenagers can work part-time in the summer, and parents can use their tax refund to fund a RESP and tap into the government incentives available. ”
More information about financial planning is available online at www.fpsc.ca.