Can You send Your kids to College & Still
have a Comfortable Retirement?
I can remember when I sent my two kids to college. They overlapped for two years. Two in college at the same time. One in a state school and one in a private college. I had a good job; it was a little bit of a stretch but not a struggle. The good news. They each graduated in four years without debt. Could I do it today? Read on.
I am sure I don’t have to tell you that the cost of college today is off the charts. IT IS SCARY! We all love our kids; but at $50,000 a year? We must figure a way to help them. And you must do it without working till you are 83. But how? Read on
According to an article in the December 19, 2018 issue of InvestmentNews, by Student Loan Hero “Students who graduated from college last year had an average of $39,400 in student debt”. That same article stated that “The US has more than $1.4 trillion of student loan debt, which is spread among roughly 44 million Americans”. To add insult to injury, “Over the past 11 years, student loans have grown nearly 157% cumulatively, while auto loan debt grew 52% and credit card debt fell 1% according to Bloomberg data.”
The American Dream includes a college education, a family of four with a nice house in the suburbs, a dog, a cat and a two weeklong vacation. At least that used to be the dream. Another part of the Dream was a good stable job, a pension, annual raises and a path up the ladder. Much of that part of the Dream has changed. Pensions started to disappear in the 1980s after IRAs and 401(k)s appeared in the late 1970s. That meant you were responsible for saving for a comfortable retirement. The company ceased looking out for you once you got the gold watch.
The idea of staying with the same company for 30 years is passé. Except if you work for a government agency or get elected to Congress. Maybe you have worked for three of four companies over the years. Your kids will work for at least twice that many. They face three big ticket items in their future. Not just the two you faced. Namely helping them through college and planning a comfortable retirement for you and your spouse. They add the cost of paying off their college loans. If it extends to graduate school, look out. YOU DON’T WANT THAT EXTRA BURDEN FOR THEM.
BUT HOW CAN YOU DO THAT??
Maybe you started putting away funds for her the day she was born. That 529 Plan with your daughter’s name on it is ready for her and it is brimming with dollars. If that is you, Read on. You have a hurdle you probably didn’t think about.
If you want to blame someone for the dilemma you are in, first blame the federal government. They promised to back college loans. Ah, the great security of being backed by the FULL FAITH AND CREDIT OF THE GOVERNMENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. Don’t get me wrong. I love the U.S. I wouldn’t think of living anywhere else. I thank my blessings that I was born here. But that doesn’t mean I love everything my government does.
Next, you can blame the greedy colleges and universities. Once those friendly folks in Washington announced they were backing all loans, the educators were free to tell you; DON’T WORRY ABOUT THE COSTS; Uncle Sam will guarantee the loans. Sign here. And oh yeah, if you sigh in your name, you are responsible to repay the loan; NOT JUNIOR, Caveat Emptor.
Once you get the blame focused on the correct groups, you need to get over it and concentrate on solving the dilemma. The kids need a shot at a good education and you deserve a COMFORTABLE RETIREMENT! YOU HAVE WORKED FOR IT!! Read on.
YOU NEED TO UNDERSTAND THE PROCESS-FORWARD AND BACKWARD
Now you are saying “Process? What process?
Of course, I am referring to the process of getting your kid into the school that is right for her at the lowest cost to you and with the fewest loans in her name. You say you didn’t know there is a process. There is always a BEST PROCESS. Even if you do it wrong you will follow some process. More than likely, you will end up paying too much for the wrong school and you will have zero peace of mind. And your first born; well they probably wouldn’t be too happy either. As far as that comfortable retirement; it will not be as comfortable as you deserve.
THE CORRECT PROCESS
The planning part of the process is to start early; when your oldest is a freshman in high school. The old saying is “The early bird gets the worm”. What if it is too late for you to be the “early bird”? Your first born is starting her junior year. The good news is that it is not too late. But it is time to hustle. The money you earn starting January 1 of the year your kid starts her second semester of her junior year is one of the keys to how much the colleges will expect to come out of your pocket for her freshman year in college. The next big date is October 1st of her senior year. Getting the FAFSA, the Profile and your estimated income for the year, need to be processed EARLY, so that you maximize your chances to receive the most aid for her. You can get help from her high school. However, that help will be from the thirty-thousand-foot level. It won’t help you with question sixty-eight on the FAFSA form. And it certainly will not help you appeal the aid package you receive. YES, you can appeal for MORE!
The Answer to the Question on the Top of the First Page is:
“YES, With MY HELP!!”
Through my personal experience in sending my kids to college, seeing three of my grandkids graduate from Boston University and Auburn University and getting a couple more ready to enroll in the next few years, I can GUIDE YOU THROUGH THE PROCESS. I will help you minimize your out of pocket expenses while making sure your retirement nest egg is not crushed.
My contact information is below. Better yet, book a time for us to talk where I can answer a few questions for you. Go to: https://calendly.com/bill-82/15min and chose a time that is convenient for you.