I wrote Money Hemorrhage back in 2010. This was a turbulent time, as the 2nd of my three daughters was starting University. I am proud of their achievement, but looking at the financial impact, it was significant.
There are many times when there are money explosions (i.e. when money is spent at a very high velocity and volume). Christmas is the obvious one for many people. August can be a much larger money-spending time, mainly due to the costs of Post Secondary education.
For those with younger kids who think that the money you spend on your kids’ new outfits, new books and maybe a new computer is a large amount, to quote B.T.O. You Ain’t Seen Nuthin’ Yet! I have talked about the high cost of University Educations many times previously. This is a reminder to folks who are just about to start this odyssey that if you watch closely, your Frugal inner voice may scream Holy Mother of Jesus on a Motorcycle. The amount of money spent is astounding.
I am about to enter a new phase of this magical financial journey, because now I will have a second daughter attending a post-secondary institution, and she has chosen to go to a school out of town (as well, her older sister is already out of town). Yes, before you comment about how this is my fault, I realize that it is hellaciously cheaper for kids to go to school in town (more than half the cost of University can be accommodations), but spending Double (or even more) than I previously really did wake me up in the middle of the night in a cold sweat.
Is it Even Possible?
Can I afford this? For now, yes I can, but it is causing a high degree of Stress and Anxiety in my life, even though I can afford it.
Any time you spend that much money at once, there is going to be a level of angst, and you will need to learn how to deal with it. I guess I need to start exercising to help alleviate the stress build-up.
Does anybody else have this psychological uproar when spending large amounts of money? How do you deal with it? I am open to suggestions.
Back To School
A few other quick views on back-to-school and RESPs
- RESP: Back to School Reminders for September.
- So that is what $50,000 looks like… It is important to know what is the final goal for an RESP.
- Back to School (Monetary Nightmare) the start of September can be expensive.
- Back To School and RESP Time is the time to think about this. When else if not the start of school?
- University, Who Pays ? It isn’t written in stone that you must pay for your kids’ education.
- Kids Allowances (redux) is this concept dead? Are allowances passe?
- Money Hemorrhage in August? (aka the Scream). September can be a very expensive month.
Remember a few years back, there was a Staples Business Depot commercial blasting the song, “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year” and parents are running through the aisles in a fantastical wonderful mood because the parents are going back to school? Well, it truly is a most wonderful time of the year because the cash registers for retailers are going “cha-ching!”
You really do end up spending a lot. This is a good time to learn to budget and stick with it. This way, the parents and kids can teach each other about money management and needs vs. wants.
Despite the huge costs, congratulations! Enjoy this time.
Some very good points comments on education. Whenever someone has their teeth in the game it increases a sense of urgency and ownership
Good read. Very informative. This can help a lot of people who are having a hard time with their personal finances.
@Andy R: I don’t know when you went to university, but it’s a lot more expensive nowadays. I went to university from late 90’s to early 2000’s, and was able to finance most of it with co-op. I still needed a little help from government loans and the parents. Today, the tuition for my program has increased 125% compare to when I started. Thank you Mike Harris and your common sense revolution.
Times have changed since the days you or I went to school.
I look at the tuition bills I receive now and 1 term is more than I paid for 4 terms, but then again I graduated in ’86, and what is with all those extra charges?
OH c’mon I’m dying for the day my son needs his university tution paid, that’ll be a dream. 18 years t o save and a 20% governemnt grant? Game on.
Versus his 3 year old self costing me $15,000 a year in daycare costs. Daycare alone, not including anything else. And then possibly private schooling at 20K a year beginning in grade 7.
I complained that my shoes hurt, until I met a man who had no feet! AYE CARUMBA!!!
Remember your post about wine? Just kiddin’. Seriously, if you are close to your daughter and really want to be supportive, a great way to reduce the stress of the expenditure is to find a way to finance much or all of it through personal economies. Tighten the old belt. And don’t make it too easy for the kids. They have to help out, e.g. summer/part itme jobs
True oh wise and all knowing Scribe of Finances.
When I graduated from high school, my parents sat me down in their living room. Dad said, “It has been nice raising you….keep in touch!”
In other words, I was responsible for my own college education.
The parents had been saying essentially the same thing to me since I was 5 years old, so I had enough money saved for the first few years of education.
Maybe more parents shifting the responsibility onto the kids would give the parents a better sleep and keep the kids away from the all-weekend kegger parties.
Good point, if you have to pay for the education, you are less likely to become a beer sponge