You do your best to budget so that you can set money aside every month. Everything your family needs is taken care of, you have an emergency fund, and you have some money left over to save and invest, but there’s only so much you can do with it. Many parents struggle to decide whether they should save for their kids education or their own retirement.
UK tuition fees can be as high as ₤9,250 per year, and once you add expenses like textbooks and living expenses, you start to see how expensive a three-year degree can be. Giving your kids a chance to graduate debt-free can give them a huge advantage in life. Without enormous amounts of debts hanging over their heads, they can get married sooner, buy a house earlier, and enjoy the freedom to choose a meaningful career.
If you’ve been putting your kids’ tuition ahead of your retirement, you’d be with 74 percent of families, and you’d probably be making a mistake.
You Help Your Kids More by Helping Yourself
University only lasts three to four years, but your retirement can be decades. Retirement is a much bigger financial commitment than tuition, and your options are limited. While there are number of scholarships and other funding options for university, retirement is really limited to your personal savings. If you don’t have any personal savings, the State Pension doesn’t provide you with much. The maximum payout is ₤129.20 per week.
Don’t Rely on Your Kids when You Retire
Almost a quarter of parents expect some kind of financial support from their children when they retire – but it’s widely accepted that retiring Baby Boomer were much better off financially at their children’s age than their children are. It’s harder for people in their 20s and 30s today to build equity; they face higher expenses and stagnant wages. In other words, you’re probably on your own for retirement.
How to Prepare for Retirement
The only way you can reasonably afford to retire is to rely on growth. Setting aside your own funds and leaving it in a bank account only loses you purchasing power. You need to invest, and you need to start early. Growth can turn modest savings into a sizeable nest egg.
Growth vs. Security
As the highest-growth conventional investment, shares will make up a big part of your retirement savings. You also need to consider the security of your savings. Alternatives like gold and silver are considered conservative assets that protect your savings and, to an extent, provide insurance against losses.
Gold and silver bars and coins are the easiest and most secure options. You can store them in a personal safe, at the bank, or in overseas gold storage – whatever works best for you. You can get silver and gold online in the UK with the click of a mouse. Gold and silver are extremely easy investments to get into, and provide an added layer of security to your retirement savings.
When you’re making tough financial decisions, don’t be afraid to put your retirement ahead of your kids’ university fund. You could be doing everyone in your family a favour.