A recent survey by CIBC has discovered 4 out of 5 parents don’t know how much post-secondary school will cost their kids.
That’s not even including how much may need to be saved for the additional costs of going to college or university, such as living expenses. It partly stems from a general misunderstanding of how RESPs function.
CIBC Vice President Kathleen Woodard tells the Alberta Morning News, RESP funds can be used for more than just tuition.
“The rules around RESPs are really very generous,” she explains. “And so you can actually use the funds in the RESP to pay for living expenses, iPads for school, rent, food, groceries, gas.”
Woodard’s biggest bit of advice is to speak to a financial advisor just as soon as you begin saving for your child’s tuition.
“Even if your child is a little bit older, and maybe you haven’t started a savings plan, go talk to advisor who can really help you understand the rules,” she explains. “And make sure that you’re taking advantage of the free money from the government, that’s the biggest thing that I hope Canadians understand. There’s money on the table, make sure you take advantage of it.” (scb)