Parents: Do you save for college?

Discussion in 'The Water Cooler' started by Hooker, Aug 15, 2013.

  1. Hooker

    Hooker Grizzled Veteran

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2009
    Posts:
    8,045
    Likes Received:
    2
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Louisiana
    I'm kinda torn on this.

    I would like to help my daughter at all costs, allow her the ability to go to any college that she desires, and allow her to enjoy college without having the added stress of money. She might get scholarships to pay for her college, but she might not. She might just be an average student. If she does get scholarships, then I would be able to give her the money when she graduates as a nice start to her adult life.

    On the other hand, I would like her to work for the things she earns. I do not want her to not work as hard in school because she knows she always has Daddy as a fall back. My parents did not pay for college, I earned a full ride through scholarships, and I paid for the rest of my expenses by working 100/hr weeks during the summer in lumber yards. Graduating college debt free was a great feeling, and knowing that I did it on my own was even a greater feeling. I also attribute me being poor in college to my outstanding money managing skills I have as an adult.

    I guess I could save and just not tell her that I'm saving.
     
  2. BJE80

    BJE80 Legendary Woodsman

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    Posts:
    14,267
    Likes Received:
    276
    Dislikes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Central and Northern Wisconsin
    We are going to help out with our children’s college and are saving for it. But we won't tell them that we are and when push comes to shove we won't tell them how much. I guess it depends on how much we feel they have earned it at the time. But yes, we plan on helping out.
     
  3. DCthebowhunter

    DCthebowhunter Die Hard Bowhunter

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2013
    Posts:
    1,910
    Likes Received:
    0
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Location:
    West TN
    My parents are planing on all of us (8) getting scholarships. The oldest did and she's graduating in Dec with her RN.
     
  4. John Galt

    John Galt Die Hard Bowhunter

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2012
    Posts:
    1,417
    Likes Received:
    1
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    A way to help yet inspire achievement is match any money she earns with your money, its kind of like paying her to earn.
    You can do this with incremental amounts increasing as does her participation, match her a buck for a buck up to a grand, then maybe two bucks for every one she earns over two grand, well you get the idea.
     
  5. Hooker

    Hooker Grizzled Veteran

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2009
    Posts:
    8,045
    Likes Received:
    2
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Louisiana
    I mean, the plan is for my daughter to get scholarships as well :lol: But even if she does get scholarships to a state school, what if she gets accepted to a better out of state school and only gets a partial scholarship? I would like her to be able to attend any college that she desires. I don't want to tell her "Sorry babe, I know you were accepted to Duke, but we can't afford it, now go to LSU".
     
  6. DCthebowhunter

    DCthebowhunter Die Hard Bowhunter

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2013
    Posts:
    1,910
    Likes Received:
    0
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Location:
    West TN
    Well do whats you think is best for her. My parents know that there is no way they can pay for all of us. The kind of school we get to attend is based on how hard we work. I'd personally like to go to CBU. Christians Brothers UN. Its the second top engineering school in the country.
     
  7. tacklebox

    tacklebox Grizzled Veteran

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2012
    Posts:
    9,332
    Likes Received:
    1,089
    Dislikes Received:
    5
    Location:
    Central KS
    Still paying off my wifes schooling :whip:
    But yes...
     
  8. Hooker

    Hooker Grizzled Veteran

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2009
    Posts:
    8,045
    Likes Received:
    2
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Louisiana
    Another question for those saving for college.

    Did you max out your retirement accounts before you starting saving for your kids college?
     
  9. Bone Head Hunter

    Bone Head Hunter Grizzled Veteran

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2012
    Posts:
    3,675
    Likes Received:
    5,176
    Dislikes Received:
    3
    Location:
    Southern Indiana
    I setup accounts for both of my girls shortly after each was born. Education IRA's..

    We never discussed college with them until they were in high school and then it was do you plan on going and if so what do you want to do with your degree. The oldest went into nursing and the youngest into property management. They both chose local community colleges on their own and we assisted them with paying for tuition and books and such. We never closed these accounts and have used money from them a couple of times when they decided to go back to school to pursue further education.
     
  10. OK/Sooner

    OK/Sooner Die Hard Bowhunter

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2011
    Posts:
    2,944
    Likes Received:
    1,076
    Dislikes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Eastern OK
    My son is three now. From the time we found out she was pregnant we started saving for college. Not much but 20$ a week. By the time he is ready to go it should be a pretty good chunk. What we haven't figured out is if we are going to tell him about it or not. Think ill wait until he's in middle school then tell him it's there if he goes to school. If not then momma and daddy get a new toy.
     
  11. Hooker

    Hooker Grizzled Veteran

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2009
    Posts:
    8,045
    Likes Received:
    2
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Louisiana
    Another question:

    What type of accounts are you using for savings? 529? Whole life insurance? CD?
     
  12. CILhunter

    CILhunter Weekend Warrior

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2011
    Posts:
    233
    Likes Received:
    0
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Location:
    People's Republic of Illinois
    My parents saved enough to help me with college. Would have come pretty close to taking care of a state school, which would have been fine, but I went to a private school. So I spent some time serving my Uncle (Sam), and the US Army and scholarships paid for the rest, leaving me some $$ left over to help with law school. I still had to work during school and in the summers to take care of my living expenses, books, etc. For law school, which was out of my home state, my wife worked for the state, so I automatically got in-state tuition, which made it much easier.

    For my own kids, I have 529 plans for each of them - I like the tax advantages, which will cover tuition and fees for a state school. They will still need to work and/or get scholarships to take care of room and board and living expenses.

    I would absolutely take care of your retirement first, though. As a friend who is a financial advisor once told me, you can borrow for college. You will have a tough time borrowing for your retirement.
     
  13. buttonbuckmaster

    buttonbuckmaster Grizzled Veteran

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2008
    Posts:
    4,195
    Likes Received:
    1,061
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Location:
    southern IL

    Whole life insurance is a great product, but don't let someone tell you its a savings tool. Thats not what it was desinged for.
     
  14. TEmbry

    TEmbry Grizzled Veteran

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2008
    Posts:
    6,325
    Likes Received:
    16
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Anchorage, AK
    My parents didn't nor would I let them. I received over a full ride to undergrad to the point I was pocketing a few grand a semester... Life was good.

    Now I take out loans for grad school. Wouldn't have it any other way, money isn't a stress if you earn a degree towards a stable field. Now paying for a Vanderbilt degree in art or philosophy... Yeah I'd be worried about money too.

    My parents have helped out a lot in other ways, which IMO is more noticed and appreciated by the kid anyway, such as cell phone bill, occasional clothes, help with rent in grad school ( agreement since middle school has been full ride to undergrad = them helping w rent for grad school)
     
  15. chopayne

    chopayne Die Hard Bowhunter

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2013
    Posts:
    2,131
    Likes Received:
    0
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Im no parent. If I ever do become one, im not going to save some money for them. They can find their own way, ill help but I sure wont foot the whole bill, that'll be motivation to find a way to pay for college. Thousand different ways.
     
  16. BJE80

    BJE80 Legendary Woodsman

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    Posts:
    14,267
    Likes Received:
    276
    Dislikes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Central and Northern Wisconsin
    No. We kept our usual retirement savings and just put some in for college. Maybe when my wife goes back to work we will look at it again.
     
  17. fletch920

    fletch920 Grizzled Veteran

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2009
    Posts:
    8,988
    Likes Received:
    4,592
    Dislikes Received:
    41
    Location:
    iowa
    I think the student should own their credits. Meaning, they need to have skin in the game. The kids that blew classes off while I was in college were normally the kids that had everything paid for by their parents. My son got a scholarship, but the plan was to make him pay for school and borrow what he needed. Then, we could help pay off the loans if we felt he was deserving. He is expected to pay for his living expenses. When he graduates, we can always help him with a financial jump-start to his adult life.

    As far as life insurance. There are some great products out there. I really like the indexed universal life products that have a good guaranteed interest rate but also have the ability to earn much higher interest depending on what the market does. It's the best of both worlds with no downside. One thing to consider is that the money that builds in a life product is not counted against the student or parents when it comes time to get financial aid. That is the only place that I know of where you can "hide" money. You can buy it very inexpensive for children and its something they can have for the rest of their lives. No worries about becoming uninsurable someday and not having life insurance. Also, most companies will allow the face amount to be increased in the future without evidence of insurability. But, it is life insurance and should only be bought if you have a need or interest in your child having life insurance. Don't buy it based solely on the savings structure.
     
  18. BJE80

    BJE80 Legendary Woodsman

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    Posts:
    14,267
    Likes Received:
    276
    Dislikes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Central and Northern Wisconsin

    I agree 100% with this and what we plan on doing. They need to earn the help.
     
  19. frenchbritt123

    frenchbritt123 Grizzled Veteran

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2010
    Posts:
    4,708
    Likes Received:
    159
    Dislikes Received:
    2
    Paying for college is part of it. I think the biggest part of a child graduating college is push from the parents, the right life balance, above average grades and a positive attitude. If you have a child that is in this category, they will succeed and graduate from college whether you think you have enough money or not.

    Don't get me wrong we are prepared, but I think the financial aspect is a piece of the pie and maybe not the biggest part.

    People never like hearing this, but where you live can have a huge effect on your child graduating from college or not.
     
  20. wl704

    wl704 Legendary Woodsman

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2012
    Posts:
    21,597
    Likes Received:
    54,928
    Dislikes Received:
    56
    Location:
    greater-Charlotte NC
    Yes! We did manage to squirrel away some money (investments mostly) and didn't use a formal ed acct which gave us more flexibility. Most just provide relief from taxes on div/interest income...which wouldn't have amounted to much.

    We did use Upromise too, which helped save some $ and just paid for my daughters books for this semester.

    -Bill
     
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2013

Share This Page