family opening a gift on Christmas night near the tree

Give the Gift of Education This Holiday Season

What are you giving your child for Christmas? What’s on their wish list this year? Like most kids, they’ve no-doubt asked for another toy or the latest gadget. Here’s an interesting statistic: each Christmas, a parent gives between 2-12 gifts to their child or children alone (sometimes even more than that).

This year, instead of adding another toy to their collection, why not give them the gift of an RESP? This is a great alternative if you’re fed up with plastic action figures (which have dubious long-term value) and it’s a perfect investment for your child’s future.

The cost of education is only going up. Let’s fast-forward to the year 2034. It’s estimated that by then, the cost of a 4-year undergraduate degree from a Canadian university could exceed $152,000!* These are alarming numbers, but an RESP can help soften the blow.

Plus…you might be able to help them qualify for additional grant money! Did you know that the government actually provides incentives for contributing to an RESP? The Canada Education Savings Grant (CESG) matches 20 percent of the first $2,500 contributed to a child’s RESP each year up to a limit of $500/year and a lifetime limit of $7,200. Contribute to an RESP before December 31 to ensure your child’s CESG for 2016 is received and earning income as soon as possible. Your little one will be grateful you did.

So this year, why not consider opening an RESP for your child? If they already have one, why not invest a little more into it over top of your regular amount in lieu of all those extra presents? You can even spread the word with aunts, uncles, cousins and grandparents about investing in their loved one’s future; you may be pleasantly surprised with the results. While your child may not understand the value of an RESP today, it will help make their tomorrow more affordable.  It truly is the gift that keeps on giving.


* Source: Heritage RESP Guide, 2016