I am a mother of two boys – now grown up and pursuing their place under the sun. When my kids were younger, I felt I had too many balls to juggle – pursuing a career, maintaining harmonious family relations, educating my children and inspiring them to be the best they can be, developing my physical and spiritual wellness. All these took its toll but none was as worrisome as saving up for the future with the wages my spouse and I can muster.
I was fortunate to have worked for a company who had a strong advocacy for financial education. I learned the equation “Income-savings = expenses” in my early 30s and kept true to this principle. As I receive annual salary adjustments, I made sure I saved most of it. The money I saved, I use to invest in insurance to protect the breadwinners and education policies for my two children.
I first invested in an education plan that provided elementary, high school and college funds. Since my savings was small, I can only afford one that provided a proportionally small education benefit. My children were 6 years apart so by the time I was done paying for the first policy, I was buying another for my newborn son. When my youngest was 3, I purchased 2ndeducation plan for his brother. This time, I bought only an education plan. Three years after, I purchased a 2nd education plan for the youngest. This went on for many years such that by the time my eldest son was going to college, he was armed with three college education policies.
When my eldest announced he wished to pursue culinary school, I did not think twice. Afterall, I was first to say “be the best you can be”. Despite the prohibitive tuition fees of culinary schools, I did not discourage him from pursuing the course. I knew I had planned well for this and that I only needed to supplement the tuition fees with other expenses not covered by the plan (such as the expensive knives and other kitchen tools used by culinary students).
Now that my second son is in college, I find myself paying only 1/3 of his annual college tuition fees. The rest we get from his education policies.
How did we do it? Here are a few tips I wish to share:
So, does it pay to plan ahead for your child’s education funding? A resounding YES because in so doing, we can attend to our retirement planning even as we are spending to send them to college.
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