4 Ways to Help Your Children Have a Brighter Future
By Elliot Caleira
No matter what circumstances you live in or were raised in, most people want to create a better future for their families. Every parent faces challenges in life, but they still want to provide a better foundation for their children. No matter what your circumstances are or what challenges you need to overcome, here are 5 ways to create a better future for your family.
1. Start planning for retirement now
No matter what age you are - or whether you even have a family of your own yet - it is never too early to start planning for retirement. In fact, the sooner you start planning for it, the better off you will be when it happens. The truth is, you will most likely hit retirement age about the time your children are just starting families of their own. If you want your children to be free to invest their resources in their own children, you need to be self-sufficient enough to take care of yourself without their help. The last thing your children need is for you to need to move in with them because you don't have the financial resources to make it on your own.
2. Get an education
One of the best gifts you can give your children is your own education. While you may be a single parent working two jobs to support your children, there are still a range of higher education options available. In fact, in many cases the lowest paying jobs are often the most demanding. With a college degree, you can most likely work one job and make the same income as you make working two jobs with no education. Community colleges offer flexible schedules with the needs of non-traditional students in mind and even online degrees are available from some of the most prestigious universities. A college degree will not only help you make a better living, it will also set a better example for your children.
3. Save for your children's education
Regardless of whether you have a college education of your own or not, the likelihood is, you probably want one for your children. Conversely, however, you probably don't want your children walking out into the world saddled with a mountain of debt just to get it. In 2017, the average college student left college already nearly $40,000 in debt. That kind of debt can take decades to pay off and can cause young people to put off things like buying a home or starting a family for years. If you really want to help your children get a good start in life, start saving for their education now.
4. Give your children time to figure out what they want to do
Many children may want to take some time off between high school and college and that is not always a bad thing. In fact, it could end up saving them a great deal of time and you a great deal of money. The truth is, around 80% of college Freshman haven't even chosen a major and at least half of all college students will change their major at least once. Every time they change their major, it can extend the time it takes to get a degree, which in turn drives up the price. As a result, less than 36% of college students are actually graduating within the standard 4-year window. Helping your children get the most from their education means helping them get the best primary education they can and then give them some time to figure out what they want to do with it.
Good financial planning and education are two of the very best ways you can help create a brighter future for your family. A good education is not just important for your children, however, it is also important for you. Without a good education, you may not have a lot of finances to plan well with.