If you are hoping to send your children off to college or university, you are probably more than aware of the exorbitant costs that come with it. With a little planning and help from a Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP), you can be financially prepared for your child’s post-secondary education. RESP provider Knowledge First Financial wants consumers to know that choosing the best RESP for you is the first important step to reaching your education savings goal.
Choosing the best RESP option for you depends on your family situation and investment style. To start with, there are three types of RESPs to choose from: individual, family and group plans.
If you have one child, an individual RESP may be the choice. An individual plan may also be of interest if you have more than one child and want a separate plan for each of them. Anyone can open an individual plan and anyone can contribute, and a minimum deposit is not required to open the plan.
If you have more than one child and feel that opening individual plans for each is not the best approach, then a family plan could be a good choice. A family RESP includes multiple beneficiaries under a single plan. You can choose how to allocate your contributions and the Canada Education Savings Grant received by the beneficiaries of a family plan can be shared, up to a maximum of $7,200 per child.
Group RESP plans are unique in that contributions are pooled with other beneficiaries of the same age and invested collectively. Group plans can be opened for one or more beneficiaries and each plan carries its own set of rules. For this reason, group plans have more restrictions on how the money is withdrawn. They also typically carry a higher upfront sales charge than individual or family plans with a lower administration fee.
Your investment style
When choosing between an individual, family or group plan, Knowledge First Financial recommends considering your investment style. A bank or investment dealer is a good choice if you want to make your own investment decisions. With a group plan the investment decisions are made on your behalf by portfolio managers.
Some things are the same – whichever type of RESP you choose
All RESPs offer access to government education grants and tax-deferred growth, regardless of which type of RESP you choose.
You are also able to contribute up to $50,000 into an RESP, per child, and the plan can remain open for 35 years from the time the RESP is open.
Knowledge First Financial’s Flex First Plan
The Flex First Plan from Knowledge First Financial is an individual plan that is a dollar-based investment that offers flexibility in both contributions and payments. It also offers a return of enrolment fees should a customer choose to cancel to reduce the amount they wish to save. If you are looking to provide a better future for your child by investing in an RESP, take the first step by calling Knowledge First Financial today at 1 800 363 7377 or browse our services here.