Kids starting school
There are many hidden costs and decisions you’ll need to make when your kids are ready to start school. Being prepared helps! Use this guide to help you work out what you can plan and save for.
Time for school but where to go?
Whether your child is starting kinder, prep or high school, the key to a smooth transition is being prepared! Where do you start though? Your first option is to speak to friends, family and neighbours to find out where their kids go or plan to go. If this isn’t possible because you’ve just moved to a new area, look up what schools are in your area and visit their websites. This also gives you an opportunity to see if schools have open days you can attend. Open days are an excellent way to find out more about the school, ask questions, and meet teachers. It also gives you an opportunity to see how other kids have settled there. Take your child/children with you and let them see what it would be like to go there.
The Good Schools Guide has information on how to choose a school, finance your child’s education, and more. fees
The earlier you start planning for your child’s education costs, the better. School (particularly if you choose to send your child to a private school), uniforms, books, excursions, camps and extra-curricular activities can add up quickly. Plus, as your child gets older, you may need to buy them a laptop, tablet or computer.
Setting up an education fund or savings account may help you save for these expenses. It’s also worth checking if you can buy second-hand uniforms and books through your school community.
Sports and recreation
One of the wonderful things about school is the opportunity to take part in a sport or activity. Like everything, there are hidden costs involved when your child does things they love: sport, gaming, music lessons, etc. When putting together a budget, it’s a good idea to factor in these costs. If there are extra expenses involved – such as sporting equipment or musical instruments – think about hiring them on a temporary basis before investing heavily on something brand new. Kids are known for changing their minds!
You don’t always have to buy something new! Once you think your child will stick with a sport or activity, look at sites like Gumtree, eBay and Facebook marketplace for good quality second-hand items.
How super can help
Super might not be at the top of your mind right now, with all other expenses coming up, but planning now will help ease the financial stress on your family if something were to happen to you later on.
Consider your insurance
Insurance through your super can give you peace of mind that your family will be looked after if something were to happen to you.
If you pass away, become totally and permanently disabled or are diagnosed with a terminal illness, this type of insurance provides a lump sum that your loved ones can use to pay the mortgage, school fees or other expenses.
If you become too ill or injured to work, Income Protection cover can pay up to 85% of your pre-illness/injury salary (with up to 75% paid as income, and anything over this paid into your super). It’s a safety net that gives you some security if the unexpected happens
You can decide who’ll receive your super when you die – it’s called nominating a beneficiary. However, with life being as busy as it is, super is often the last thing we think about, and it may have been a while since you updated your beneficiaries.
When your personal circumstances change – like getting married, having children or buying a house – it’s a good idea to review who you’ve nominated to receive your death benefit. Learn more about the different types of nominations you can make. It’s never too late to do this!
Things to consider when your kids are starting school
Factor in holiday, after school and before school care
If you’re a working parent, you may need extra support such as holiday care, in-home care and/or before and after-school care. They’re a great support for working parents, but they do come at a cost. See if you’re eligible for the Government’s Child Care Subsidy.
Consider the costs of education
Education expenses can add up, from fees to uniforms to books and more. The Good Schools Guide can help you research different schools and give you ideas on how to finance your child’s education.
Budget for hidden expenses and emergencies
Compare your income to your expenses, and factor in any emergencies that may arise, such as tutors or broken equipment. You can use tools on MoneySmart to help you.
Review your insurance options
Think about whether any insurance you currently have in your super fits your current circumstances. You can apply for or change your insurance with us at any time.
Nominate your beneficiaries
Check that your beneficiary nomination(s) reflect your current family circumstances. Request a binding nomination form.3 mins
Teach your kids about money
The earlier the better! Talking to your kids now can help encourage a healthy attitude towards money in the future. Raising Children has some great tips.
Do you have questions about your insurance or nominating beneficiaries?
Speak to one of our experienced financial advisers at no extra cost to you.Request a callback