It is a strange thing to watch your children grow up. Activities that were at one time determined by you, or schedule and availability, are suddenly driven by THEIR desires and interests.
I have always been the sort of person who wants to skip forward to the end to find out what happens. I like to come home from holidays, so I can reminisce about the good times. I like to know the answers, the anticipation is sometimes too overwhelming. I sometimes rush through today so I can get to someday.
But watching my 3 kids grow up and become who they will be is one of the most enthralling things I have ever witnessed.
My oldest daughter, at age 12 is charging towards her goals with precision and confidence. She wants to be bi-lingual, and to use her language in her career. She is thinking she would like to be a flight attendant, and travel the world.
My middle daughter is our animal whisperer, but unlike her mother she can handle the tough stuff. We aren’t even close to deciding, but if there is a kid of ours who will go into medicine, it is this one. She is patient, and kind but also pragmatic.
Our youngest at only 5 is the wild card. His need to dominate a room is strong, and this is a little person who will challenge the greatest of foes (even his dad) He ALWAYS has an answer and at 5 is actually a force to be reckoned with on the chess board. He sees the big picture, and will never give up on his journey to success. Lord help us if he goes into politics, or becomes a lawyer, but his dominance and wit will come into play somehow.
We all have dreams for our kids, but seeing them determine their own path and follow their OWN dreams is the most fabulous thing, and as a parent I want to ensure that I am there to support them on their journey.
Yes, I want them to be independent and able to support themselves, but if one of them is COMMITTED to a lengthy university program, I know we will do everything we can to get them through it.
But that doesn’t need to come at the sacrifice of the life that my hubby and I have built. It scares me to consider the costs of a medical degree, AND a law degree all within a few years. I don’t want to have to sell my home, or sacrifice my retirement so my children can achieve their dreams (although I will, if I need to!)
So, to protect the life we have built and ensure that my kids have the ability to achieve THEIR dreams, we plan ahead to make sure that support is there (if they need it) in the form of RESP’s for each of the kids. From just a few dollars a week, we can be sure that they have CHOICES after high school.
Time does go fast and sometimes it is hard to put the much needed dollars towards your kids “someday” dream, but being able to think TODAY about their LATER will ensure that they have options and that you aren’t shifting your dreams to support them.
- Use the money from your bottle returns to put into a special account for your kids! These dollars usually just end up back in your wallet and “disappear” but if siphoned off you will be amazed at how they add up!
- Do an annual garage sale of all the excess stuff! Tuck the money away for your kids (i mean, they are selling their stuff too right?)
- Spend HALF as much at the holidays on presents for your kids! Trust me, they get ENOUGH stuff already! Whatever your budget, put half of it away for them in an RESP account for later
- Once your kids start working, encourage them to invest into their RESP account as well! It is NEVER too early to start saving
Lastly, join us on September 17th at 9:00pmEST for a #RESPwithRBC Twitter party and you can WIN 1 of 6 $150 VISA gift cards! Perhaps you start to invest your winnings into your kids future?
Book your appointment today to talk to an RBC Financial Advisor about what the right RESP investment strategy is for you. They can work to create the right schedule, with flexible schedules, and talk about the options your kids have for withdrawing their RESP’s in the future.
And remember, it is never too late to start!