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Is Private Schooling Still a Smart Choice?

May 28, 2015 | Financial Planning, Lifestyle | 1 comment

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You most likely have a good idea of the cost of schooling, but did you know that new parents who want their children to have a private school education later down the line are being advised to invest R1.4 to R1.5 million TODAY in order to cover their costs?

So said Financial Advisor Warren Ingram, as a recent guest on 702’s Money Show, talking about the rising cost of education. Warren is an award-winning financial planner and respected personal finance commentator in the media. He strongly believes that private schooling is just not financially viable for many parents: in today’s monetary terms, a Model C education plus university degree will cost R1.1 million, and private school education plus university will cost R2.2 million, he says.

Veritas Wealth has always maintained that where you send your children to school (along with where you live and what you drive) are emotional decisions that have far reaching financial implications. They are probably the three biggest financial decisions you will make. You need to be comfortable with the financial decision of paying for private school education and aware of the risks associated with not having enough money one day when you retire because of it. The reality is that you could be putting your financial independence at risk and may have to depend on the children that you may be struggling to educate at a private school.

The approach we recommend to parents when considering whether private schooling is an option is multi-dimensional. We believe that you need to look at the projected hard costs over what can be nearly 20 years or more of schooling and university, determine if this is affordable or will potentially load you with debt, and if the latter, consider if there are other more affordable alternatives, such as Model C schools that are available to you. Only once you have looked at all these angles are you in a position to make the best decision. And remember, we are always happy to talk these major life decisions through with you.

Click here to listen to the podcast with Warren’s thoughts:The cost of education


1 Comment

  1. John Gowing

    Having been through this I heartily agree. There is often temptation or even pressure to push for private schooling in the hope of achieving a “better education” and improving our children’s changes in this increasingly competitive world.

    However remember that the education system is not a delivery system, it is an acquisition system.
    If your children are motivated, encouraged, supported, and even a little bribed and coerced to engage with the system and extract as much as possible from it, they can achieve great things even from more modest institutions.
    By saving on private school fees one might have more budget to engage in supporting your children’s education with memberships, subscriptions, excursions, & extracurricular activities. These can go a long way toward broadening their experience, foster and maintain interest, and encouraging them to engage, get involved, take leadership positions and so forth.
    Throwing money at a problem, especially borrowed money is not always the solution. An investment of some precious time can often pay greater dividends.


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