Parenthood used to be simple.
Food, water, shelter and love (optional then) were needed in the past. Then you handed the boy a hoe and instructed him to start raking the fields. Then the next one came along and hey, another pair of hands to help out at the farm!
Modern life has changed it all. Kids are no longer an asset that you can rely upon to provide additional manpower for the family. They have, for a lack of better words, become a liability.
The baby arrives amongst much fanfare. You feed, cloth and shelters the little cutie pie till he grows up into a little brat. You try to discipline him till you give up and simply throw him into the school and hope that somehow the “every school is a good school” mantra can deal with that monster. However, the teacher insists that you get him some help outside of school and you have to engage a tutor. Or even a whole village of them so that he can make it to the next level.
Let us not forget that it takes more than just that. The kids get cranky whenever they are away from their mobile phones. You also can’t get them out of the house without the promise of WiFi. Why it is a necessity to Instagram everything we eat nowadays?!
By the time he reaches the age of 21, you are mentally and financially exhausted.
And aged by at least 40 years.
Parenthood just got a lot more expensive!
When I was growing up, my mother pressured me to do well for examinations so that I may enrol into a local university. She reminded me constantly that studying overseas was not an option due to the prohibitive cost. I had to buckle up, kept my Playstation away grudgingly and mugged like crazy.
Little did I know – All I need to do was to sue my parents to get that oversea university experience!
In 2018, the Court of Appeal ruled that parents have a duty to maintain their children, including those above the age of 21 who are receiving an education. However, the Court did also state back then that it was not applicable for overseas study. Thus, it is not a huge game-changer since citizens are eligible for subsidies if they are enrolled at a local university.
However, that ruling gave rise to a legal right to sue your own parents for tertiary education fees. Unsurprisingly, one smart kid decided to do just that after his father failed to pony up the money for him for his overseas education at the Columbia College in Canada.
The father was ordered to pay 60% towards the son’s tertiary education while the mother would make up the remainder.
How much is that in actual money?
We checked out the cost of the tuition fee at Columbia College and found out that it cost $33,331 (SGD) for a 2-year course. Rental of a one-bedder in Vancouver typically cost about $1,500 per month or $36,000 for 24 months. If we guess-estimate the total cost of studying for 2 years at Columbia College, it should cost at least a cool $100,000.
If $100,000 is not a big issue for you, you can press that little red X button on the top right of your screen. In case you do not have time to read up, the father who refused to pay for the son’s education is a director for several companies. Yet he decided to feign that he was impoverished in order to wriggle out of the situation.
For the rest of us, a $100k is a large game-changer.
And a sufficient reason to start saving up.
So what? I really have no money.
Congratulations on being poor?!
The Court evaluates whether the parents are in the position to offer that luxury of sending the children for the last stage of their education journey. If the judge deems that you are too poor to afford that, chances are that you need not pay.
However, that is no reason to be happy because if you cannot afford a 100k, you are not ready for retirement. Harsh but absolutely true.
For the financially prudent parents who currently do not wish to work perpetually, this additional cost may throw a spanner into your retirement.
The actual cost is higher than $100,000.
Now that you have established that you need to save up more in order to meet this unforeseen retirement need, all you need to just to increase your nest-egg by a $100,000 right?
Not so fast.
You need at least $100k per child.
If you have two, that is $200,000 for you.
You do the rest of the maths accordingly.
That is not the end of it.
You also need to cater for inflation.
Will inflation remains at a stable 3% or shall hyperinflation set in in the future?
How many more years do you have before your precious little baby turns into a nerdy college student?
It seems to be a difficult maths question for most of us.
Come to think of it, they should set it as a PSLE question!
Fret not, you do not have to be a mathematician to sort this out.
Simply go to our Discover engine and let it guide you to the final figure.
Start saving now to ease the future burden
No matter what instruments you utilise to help you achieve that goal, one thing is for sure. Start saving today.
Due to the compounded interest rate, it is easier to save a small amount now than to set aside a huge fortune later.
Before your kid sues you.
Before your retirement plans go kaput.
Take action today.
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