When I was pregnant with Bethany companies started sending us all sorts of information, formula samples, diaper coupons, bags, onesies and RESP (Registered Education Savings Plan) pamphlets. I’d open the packages but to my very pregnant brain – it all seemed to be written in Greek.
After she was born, I managed to figure out the diaper & formula part – I kind of had to if I wanted her to survive, and didn’t want pee on the couch. I even browsed the pamphlets as I sat rocking her to sleep but ultimately I was overwhelmed and it fell to the wayside.
The years have melted away since those early days. They’ve been a flurry of spit up & first steps, math equations & monkey bars. My mind is filled with keeping them safe, feeding them well, making sure they feel loved & their bodies healthy. Each decision I make is to one end – prepare them for their future, to be strong, confident, well rounded, independent adults.
Until recently, an RESP, (while something that sounded useful, responsible and important) didn’t seem to be a part of that goal. Then I realized something, part of preparing them for their futures is making sure that they are able to pursue their dreams. That pursuit won’t come for free and if Corey & I don’t get started soon, we may not have the finances there to help them. More over, they may not have it there to help themselves.
The trouble is, while I’m a big Type A planner, frugal
borderline cheap, super saving kind of gal, I didn’t know anything about an RESP. Those pamphlets are long gone and I’ve been overwhelmed.
Enter RBC stage left! They understand that a parent’s life is a busy one, that I’m not the only one in the “best laid plans” situation and they’re trying to take the mystery out of the RESP planning department.
Here’s what I’ve discovered:
- The sooner we begin saving for our children’s education the better! (translation: Stop procrastinating Ashley!)
- At $25 a week over 18 years, a total of $50,911 can be saved!
- The government wants to help us save (!) & The Canada Education Savings Grant will match up to 20% on the first $2,500 saved annually. Broken down that adds up to the potential of $500 a year, with a lifetime maximum of $7,200!
- RBC is ready and waiting to give advice, offer guidance and erase “overwhelmed” from the list of reasons we haven’t set up our RESPs
- An RESP can be used for university, college, apprenticeships (which I didn’t know!), non-credit courses and if our children don’t use our contributions they can be used to fund RRSPs
- Weekly contributions can be set up using RBC’s RESP-Matic, using an amount that fits our individual budget
- If your family or friends want to help towards your children’s future, they too are able to make contributions
- Involve you children in their RESP savings. They can contribute to them too, making those dreams feel a little closer to a reality
Find more information, tips and all you need to get started saving for your children’s RESPs available HERE at the RBC website.
Whether you still have questions or you’re just looking for some fun, information conversations, you simply MUST check out the#RESPwithRBC Twitter party on October 1 2014. They’ll be answering our questions, sharing more information about an RESP and giving away 6 $100 gift cards.
Finally, and I think the most exciting thing to share is the RBC Grow your RESP contest! With 4 grand prizes of $500 to be used towards RESP’s available to be won, you’ll be well on the way to helping your children plan for their futures!
Do you already have an RESP set up for your children or are you in the same boat as Corey & I are?