3 Simple Ways to Avoid Crippling Student Debt

Attending post-secondary school sets your child up for a successful future. But costs are becoming increasingly prohibitive. So how can you and your family prepare so your child isn’t burdened by debt as they launch into their career? Plan ahead! Here are three easy ways to be prepared for this pivotal financial milestone.


1. Wise Investments & Planning. Utilize Canadian tax and savings tools and investments.

- RESPs: Registered Education Savings Plans are a can’t-miss investment opportunity specifically for Canadians who want to save for their child’s education. The Canadian government will provide a grant of up to $500/year or a lifetime amount of $7,200 based on your investments. That’s more than a year’s tuition just for participating! This is in addition to your savings and earnings on those savings. Even saving $5/week to begin can add up quickly if you start early and take advantage of government grants.

- Taxes: Claim tuition expenses your student is not claiming on your yearly taxes to increase your return.


2. Location. Location. Location. International destinations are great opportunities for travel but can hurt a student’s financial future. Going to an excellent school near home can make education more affordable:

- Tuition costs: International tuition fees can drastically increase costs. Local colleges and universities will provide lower tuition costs, and local students can often opt out of health plans and other costly student fees.

- Live at home: Estimated costs for on- or near-campus living in Edmonton range from

$11,000 to $15,0001 per year, which can be reduced if your student can live at home or in a location with lower rent.


3. Free Money! Apply for a wide range of accessible scholarships, grants, and bursaries.

- Unclaimed funds: Many scholarships and grants go unclaimed each year simply because no one applied or they applied too late. This free money can pay for tuition and additional fees!

- Start your search early: Start researching in September so you can be sure to apply by deadlines in January or February for fall 2022. You can begin your search here:


Alberta:

https://alis.alberta.ca/explore-education-and-training/pay-for-your-education/apply-for-free-money-to-pay-for-school/

https://studentaid.alberta.ca/scholarships/


Apprentices:

https://www.canada.ca/en/employment-social-development/services/apprentices.html


Beyond these strategies, Vandermeer Financial can help create an investment and savings strategy for you and your family that can allow you to confidently secure your child’s future. In addition to helping you manage your RESPs, we can build your savings portfolio with private investments and Segregated Funds through Insurance.

Contact us today so we can help you prepare for your child’s future.


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