The only real legacy you can provide for your children in order to help them through the challenges of life is a good education.
Indeed, if you will save for your child’s education now, it will save you from a rainy day.
So, you want to make sure that you have a solid plan and savings module to ensure that this becomes a reality for them and for you.
Here’s how to plan and save for your child’s future:
1. Determine What You Can Afford To Save
First, you need to take time out to ascertain what you can afford to save.
To help you realise where you’re spending your money, look back at your bank statements, other bills and receipts.
Also, you can use a budget planner to help you compare what you are spending your money on to your income.
Evaluate which areas can be trimmed and start saving a higher fixed amount each month.
Use a budget and savings calculators to help you work out the sums.
This, if not anything else, will give you a realistic idea of what you can afford to put aside each month.
2. Start Early
The best time to start saving for your child’s education was 7 years ago.
The next best time is now – whether or not you have a child yet.
In fact, rather than taking multiple vacations and living large, put some money away on a regular basis towards your child/ren’s education funds.
This could be daily, weekly or monthly towards your child’s education.
3. Set Up A Target Savings Account
Putting up a target savings account when your child is young means that you have a number of years to build up your savings.
When working out let’s say University costs, you should factor in things like rent, monthly allowance, transport, books etc.
Basically, look for an account with great interest rates like a fixed deposit account. This will help you save for your child’s education.
5. Review Your Budget Regularly
It is wise to review your budget regularly as your financial situation changes (for the better).
For instance, you may get an income raise which will allow you to save more.
Of course, the same also applies if your earnings decrease and you can’t save as much.
Don’t be discouraged and stop saving altogether if this happens. Instead, look at saving a small amount every month. This will eventually build up plus help you stay disciplined and committed to the set goal.
6. Make Your Savings Automatic
Use a savings app like Piggyvest or Cowrywise to automate your savings, or ask your financial institution to set up automatic, direct debits from your salary account to your Target Savings Account.
This way you don’t have to put in any extra effort into ensuring you are making regular contributions to saving towards your child’s school fees.
7. Bring Your Family Into It
Encourage godparents, grandparents, and other family members to add their contribution to the plan, in place of gifts at Christmas, birthdays and other events.
Remind grand-parents and God-parents, the big Uncles and Aunties that the best legacy they can offer your children is a contribution to their education.
8. Choose Your Child’s School Wisely
In choosing where to send your kids to school, it is important that you choose a good school that fits into your family’s earning income.
If your current income cannot finance your children’s education without a loan uptake every time, it means the school is not sustainable in the long run and you might have to find an economical option that instills the same values as the more expensive one.
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Endeavour to discuss with your children the genuine reasons why they have to change schools emphasising the fact that sending them out of school constantly is embarrassing.
8. Invest Your Money Prudently
Many financial and investment products claim to help you save for your child’s education or meet other financial goals but start birthing stories months down the line.
So, before you decide to place your money in such an idea or product:
- Work out your goal
- Assess if the product meets your needs
- How much you can afford to set aside
- The rate of return you need
- How much risk you can afford to take
- Find out more before placing your money in common investment products.
By investing from an early time, you will eliminate the financial worry of not having sufficient funds to give your children the best education possible, as the funds in your investment will grow every year.
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