How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Non-investing personal finance issues including insurance, credit, real estate, taxes, employment and legal issues such as trusts and wills

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby SamB » Sat Jan 26, 2013 4:24 pm

I did a year in a war zone to pay for half of my college education. I paid for the other half by working, and a few student loans. I don't really expect my daughter to do the same. Basically, the only thing I really enjoy spending money on is paying for my daughter's education. If this has resulted in some kind of adverse effect, it is hard to decipher at this point. One way or the other she graduates with zero debt, and I get to spend my money on something that I value.
SamB
 
Posts: 708
Joined: Mon Mar 12, 2007 3:17 pm

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby JamesSFO » Sat Jan 26, 2013 4:30 pm

The original study is problematic here's one good critique: http://andrewgelman.com/2013/01/that-claim-that-students-whose-parents-pay-for-more-of-college-get-wors-grades/

I think all of these things are highly personal. My parents felt it was their job to pay for my brother/I to be fully educated for me that was undergrad, grad, and law. For my brother it was undergrad only. I don't have kids of my own but have been saving for my niece (3)/nephew (in utero) with a goal of providing each of them approximately 1 year of tuition in a 529.
User avatar
JamesSFO
 
Posts: 2252
Joined: Thu Apr 26, 2012 10:16 pm

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Dopey » Sat Jan 26, 2013 4:46 pm

I graduated just a few years ago and I was lucky enough to have my parents help me out substantially.

They paid the tuition, and I basically paid everything else. This meant I was responsible for my apartment, my car and maintenance expenses, my books, recreation, clothes, etc. With this set up, I was able to graduate debt free, and I only worked during the school year for 3 semesters. I also worked my tail off working lots of overtime on construction jobs through my high school years and saved vigilantly. Once I was able to get some engineering internships during the summers of my college years, my summer pay increased further.

I went to a public, in-state school. Frankly, I don't see many reasons to go to any other type of school. Undergraduate degrees are mostly all equal, assuming your school is accredited. I also didn't take 6.5 years to finish my undergrad.

I'm very thankful for my parents for funding my tuition, but I felt like I was far from getting a free ride with an unlimited credit card. Having some skin in the game myself definitely motivated me. I plan (hope) to have a similar set up with my children, except probably even a more strict rule about the public in state school thing. My little sister is currently going to a private school and it's blowing my parent's mind...

Not saying this is the right way or the best way, but it worked out well for my parents and I.

Good luck.
Dopey
 
Posts: 101
Joined: Thu Oct 25, 2012 8:41 pm

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby RobertAlanK » Sat Jan 26, 2013 6:03 pm

lovenox11 wrote:They will probably pay 30k/yr; total of 120k

But I will not pay for them. I will do everything to set them up academically to succeed (i.e. good middle/HS helping them get scholarships). Then they will take out loans to cover the rest and learn financial responsibility of having debt.


My preference is to do my best to teach my child financial responsibility well before college and the possibility of having the burden of paying off such a large amount of student loan debt.

I'll do my best to pay for tuition, room and board not covered by financial aid and ask my daughter to pay for her own other living expenses. I expect she'll have worked part-time and summer jobs to fund those. In short, very much the same as my parents did for me.
RobertAlanK
 
Posts: 142
Joined: Mon Dec 28, 2009 4:31 pm

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby MnD » Sat Jan 26, 2013 6:36 pm

finley wrote:Working while in college can be done, but I think it would be very hard to not have it be a distraction from studying. Maybe if you do not have a challenging major it is easier to do


I worked all throughout undergrad for an employer in my field of study - engineering hydrology and graduated with high honors. My senior year I earned credit for a project I was doing at work and also getting paid for. My daughter is at a highly selective engineering school, taking 18-19 credits in engineering physics, is in their honors program and has worked 15-20 hours per week since day 1. Initially it was a menial job but now has a great paying, private funded technical internship position. Most students at this school work - they in in great demand by local employers for smart tech-savvy kids. Many juniors and seniors make enough to pay all their net college costs, especially if they are in-state and/or have a partial scholarship. The school indicates that students will be at a significant disadvantage upon graduation if they haven't had ongoing paid internship experience starting their junior year.

It means less time for partying and other social activities but it can be done. The skills learned to juggle school, work, household responsibilities is invaluable. I also wonder about students that haven't worked a day in their lives other than perhaps a few menial summer jobs. Entering the professional workforce must be quite a shock.

Sounds like pre-med is very different - all about the grades I take it from your post, and perhaps relevant undergrad employment opportunities are limited/nonexistent due to liability and other reasons. But their are "challenging majors" where work while in school is not unusual and very beneficial to graduates.
Last edited by MnD on Sat Jan 26, 2013 6:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.
MnD
 
Posts: 2301
Joined: Mon Jan 14, 2008 12:41 pm

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby sscritic » Sat Jan 26, 2013 6:50 pm

I and the federal government funded UGMA accounts for my children. Once they went to college, I provided next to nothing. They didn't work at all, except my daughter who wanted to be a dentist got a job with a dentist for practical experience. I assume she got paid, but that's not why she took the job. My children also got support from my father who sent all of his grandchildren equal checks every year they were in college (I think the max was five one year - the kids were spaced one a year, but one stayed out one year, so the year she went back there were five in college at the same time).

So I supported them by giving them money before they turned 18 and I didn't support them when they were in college. Hmm, but that's not the question. How much did I expect my kids to pay for college? Nothing. If what they had in the UGMA and what they got from my father had not been enough, I would have given more. That is particularly true of my daughter, as my son's UGMA was much more generously funded (thanks, Social Security). What I did do to equalize things a little is that I bought her a car and I didn't buy him one.

Addendum: state school. last century.
sscritic
 
Posts: 21858
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 8:36 am

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby sscritic » Sat Jan 26, 2013 6:54 pm

MnD wrote:I also wonder about students that haven't worked a day in their lives other than perhaps a few menial summer jobs. Entering the professional workforce must be quite a shock.

I think a Ph.D. program or medical school will do a good job of replacing the "work" you value so highly in preparing them for the professional workforce. You don't need a "job" to learn how to work.
sscritic
 
Posts: 21858
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 8:36 am

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby lwfitzge » Sat Jan 26, 2013 7:12 pm

I came from modest means and paid my own way for both undergrad and graduate school (MS and PhD) with loans, scholarships, internships and summer/weekend jobs. My wife had a full ride at private school from her parents funds and scholarships, and worked in summer for recreational funds. I'm happy I can help my kids given how tuition cost have spiraled out of control above inflation in recent times.My first kid hits university age in two yrs. I agree education is among the greatest gifts we as parents can help support and encourage. There are limits to our generosity. I have funded 529's with enough to cover 4 yrs public in-state university (tuition, room and board, books, computer, food and clothes allowance). Other discretionary needs such as car, insurance, trips/leisure, gifts etc..to be supported with summer jobs. We are fortunate that our in-state option is highly regarded and among the higher ranked public institutions. Therefore, I've told my two boys that I highly encourage them to take the public option vs an equivalent private school at twice the costs. However, should they wish to go the private route they will have to make up the cost difference themselves in scholarships, summer jobs, loans etc, or secure help from their grandparents if they so choose. My kids are not a likely candidates for need-based financial aid.
lwfitzge
 
Posts: 311
Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2011 8:01 am

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby TRC » Sat Jan 26, 2013 8:26 pm

Anytime someone pays for something (whetherit be some or all), they have a stronger appreciation for what they have.

I will probably try and structure it so that my kids fund ~20% of their education.
TRC
 
Posts: 1379
Joined: Sat Dec 20, 2008 5:38 pm

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby sscritic » Sat Jan 26, 2013 8:34 pm

TRC wrote:Anytime someone pays for something (whetherit be some or all), they have a stronger appreciation for what they have.

If you are a married man, does your wife appreciate her diamond engagement ring less because you didn't make her pay for half? Maybe you did, so she could truly appreciate the ring, if not you. :)
sscritic
 
Posts: 21858
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 8:36 am

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby epilnk » Sat Jan 26, 2013 8:53 pm

My husband comes from a highly educated background and got a full ride from his parents. I come from a lower middle class background - first in family to go to college on a combination of scholarships, loans, and part time work, with only a little bit of tuition paid by my parents. Both of us value hard work and have PhDs, like many members of my husband's family. Unfortunately my financial struggles did have an impact on my education; I often could not afford all the books needed for my courses which definitely affected my grades, and I was unable to take advantage of unpaid summer opportunities.

Our children will be getting a full free ride - tuition, room and board, books - whether they go to the local community college or Stanford. We can afford to do this so we will, nor in our financial position can I see any justification for not giving them that start. Lifestyle expenses during college will be their responsibility, and there will be no parental credit card. However if they have not yet learned the value of hard work by the time they go to college I'm afraid we will have failed them already.
epilnk
 
Posts: 2591
Joined: Wed Apr 18, 2007 7:05 pm

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby reggiesimpson » Sat Jan 26, 2013 8:55 pm

I paid for college for both of my children. The fees were mitigated significantly by their aquisition of scholarships. They worked diligently towards degrees that will afford them solid paying careers. They are both graduating on time with high GPAs. If they had to work and/or take out loans during this period it would have impacted their education IMO. It certainly did for me and i didnt want them going through that.
reggiesimpson
 
Posts: 1287
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2011 12:47 pm

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby jon-nyc » Sat Jan 26, 2013 9:05 pm

I'll pay 100%, through grad school.

My grandfather was put through MIT by his siblings (his parents died when he was a boy). He was the first in our lineage to go to college. He paid for his kids, including grad school at an Ivy. My folks paid for my siblings and I. I'll pay for my son. As far as I'm concerned, its part of the intergenerational pact.


I'll add I understand and respect people who make the opposite decision. But its not the route we're taking.
jon-nyc
 
Posts: 909
Joined: Sun Nov 15, 2009 9:02 am
Location: New York

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby abuss368 » Sat Jan 26, 2013 9:39 pm

Rick Ferri wrote:
Let's not be political. Of course I would have paid for some soft pseudo-degree in underwater basket-weaving. The problem is that I'd still be paying their bills now - and that wasn't going to fly. So, when we made progress on the real career degree idea, that's as far as the conversation was going in my house. They can become educated on 1500 century art and literature on their own dime.

Rick Ferri


Well said Rick.
John C. Bogle: "You simply do not need to put your money into 8 different mutual funds!" | | Disclosure: Three Fund Portfolio + REITs
User avatar
abuss368
 
Posts: 6769
Joined: Mon Aug 03, 2009 2:33 pm
Location: At the Beach

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Bungo » Sat Jan 26, 2013 9:44 pm

I am paying 100% of the tuition, housing/meal plan, and textbooks for my stepdaughter. She is responsible for the rest of her living expenses. This is subject to maintaining at least a 3.0 GPA, and any proposed change of major has to be OK'd by me.
Bungo
 
Posts: 609
Joined: Wed Sep 28, 2011 11:28 am

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby texasdiver » Sat Jan 26, 2013 10:11 pm

sscritic wrote:
TRC wrote:Anytime someone pays for something (whetherit be some or all), they have a stronger appreciation for what they have.

If you are a married man, does your wife appreciate her diamond engagement ring less because you didn't make her pay for half? Maybe you did, so she could truly appreciate the ring, if not you. :)


My wife was a single mother with a 2-year old daughter when we got engaged and married. Although it was long before I found this forum, in true boglehead fashion I took the DeBeers recommended 2-months salary and opened a Coverdale college savings account for her daughter with the engagement ring money. I told her that if she preferred a ring we could spend any part of her daughter's college education fund for an engagement ring. She told me we weren't touching a dime of it and bought herself a cubic zirconia ring on Amazon for $15.
texasdiver
 
Posts: 1020
Joined: Thu Jun 25, 2009 12:50 am

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Garco » Sat Jan 26, 2013 10:19 pm

We paid 100% of the tuition and fees, room and board, and books and (art) supplies for both of our children's undergraduate degrees at private institutions. They were both expected to work either during the school year or summer to pay for incidentals. That mostly worked out for our son but not so much for our daughter because she had an illness first year and ended up taking summer school courses to make up for lost time. But they both graduated with excellent degrees from very good colleges in 4 years with no debt. That was our goal. It was the same goal as our own parents had, and achieved, in paying for our college educations.

Graduate school was another thing. Our son chose not to go to graduate school, indeed took a job at a consulting firm starting August after his graduation. He's been financially independent ever since (makes a lot more money than I do), and has an interesting and multifaceted career (not in consulting!). Our daughter the artist-designer was again different after college, first barely making ends meet living in NY (with some rent subsidy from us), and then deciding to advance her career by earning an MBA. She took out fairly prodigious loans for that, even though we subsidized her rent. She earned her degree from a top 10 MBA program and now has a good, well paying position -- but big loan debt and big rent (back in NYC). However, we plan to help her with the loans, in part because we can -- owing to our receiving a bequest which we think her grandparents would have wanted us to use for her education. I think this will end the big outflow of expenses from us -- except maybe wedding costs!
User avatar
Garco
 
Posts: 398
Joined: Wed Jan 23, 2013 2:04 am

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Dave76 » Sat Jan 26, 2013 10:29 pm

TRC wrote:Anytime someone pays for something (whetherit be some or all), they have a stronger appreciation for what they have.



:eek:

Speak for yourself. I didn't like paying tuition fees to support professors who went on endless sabbaticals. Even when my professors were on the campus, tracking them down during 'office hours' was usually a challenge.

Higher education is an industry gone rogue.
Dave76
 
Posts: 564
Joined: Sat Mar 03, 2012 9:05 pm

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby umfundi » Sat Jan 26, 2013 11:30 pm

From the article quoted in the OP:

... said Dr. Hamilton, whose study was published in this month’s American Sociological Review. “But it was surprising because everybody has always assumed that the more you give, the better your child does.”


Frankly, this is garbage. How can you go into a study with that kind of bias?

The dedication on my PhD thesis is, "To my father, who gave me the opportunities he never had". It's an incredible thing.

For my own kids, I am giving them the opportunity to graduate debt free from the college of their choice. Expectations are a big part of the discussion. Finances are not.

Keith
Déjà Vu is not a prediction
umfundi
 
Posts: 3361
Joined: Tue Jun 07, 2011 5:26 pm

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby jayars35 » Sun Jan 27, 2013 12:38 am

When I was applying to colleges, where I went was not only my decision. My parents had a say as they had a financial interest in play. I ended up going to a state school within commuting distance and lived at home. My parents let me do so and charged me no rent or board, but I paid for college. I worked weekends at a lumber yard and during the summer, I worked weekdays roofing houses. Graduated in 1986 with only $500 in loans which I paid of during grad school. My wife's parents paid for ~ half of her undergrad and she paid the rest by working part time. She paid all of her grad school.

We plan to pay half of our kid's cost to go to a state school. If they go to a private school, we will pay the same dollar amount as if it was public. Many kids here in NC go to community college the first year or two then transfer to a state school. For some degrees it works great, others, not so good. If my children wanted to do that, I would have no objection.
jayars35
 
Posts: 96
Joined: Sat Mar 07, 2009 4:31 pm
Location: North Carolina

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby wingnutty » Sun Jan 27, 2013 12:56 am

This is a tough one for me. We have 2 kids and I was planning on paying for a significant part of their education. Our plan, as we originally planned, was to have them pay for the first year and then we would pay for the remaining three.

We found out we are having twins (due in march), and that changes everything for us, or so it seems. I don't think it'll be possible for us to pay the significant percentage of four college educations :? I'm already having heartburn over it, and the twins aren't even born yet. Granted, we have a long, long time until the rubber meets the road, but we are going to have to rethink our strategy.
wingnutty
 
Posts: 296
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 7:32 pm
Location: Western Montana

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby stoptothink » Sun Jan 27, 2013 1:49 am

texasdiver wrote:
sscritic wrote:
TRC wrote:Anytime someone pays for something (whetherit be some or all), they have a stronger appreciation for what they have.

If you are a married man, does your wife appreciate her diamond engagement ring less because you didn't make her pay for half? Maybe you did, so she could truly appreciate the ring, if not you. :)


My wife was a single mother with a 2-year old daughter when we got engaged and married. Although it was long before I found this forum, in true boglehead fashion I took the DeBeers recommended 2-months salary and opened a Coverdale college savings account for her daughter with the engagement ring money. I told her that if she preferred a ring we could spend any part of her daughter's college education fund for an engagement ring. She told me we weren't touching a dime of it and bought herself a cubic zirconia ring on Amazon for $15.


I actually tried something similar, sort of in jest, with my ex-wife. She had pretty significant school debt when we got engaged, I told her I'd pay off all her debt or she could have half the amount towards a ring. She chose the ring, of course I ended up paying off her undergrad debt shortly after we marred and then for her dental school out of pocket, and we ended up divorced anyway.
stoptothink
 
Posts: 1367
Joined: Fri Dec 31, 2010 9:53 am

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby epilnk » Sun Jan 27, 2013 3:41 am

texasdiver wrote:
sscritic wrote:
TRC wrote:Anytime someone pays for something (whetherit be some or all), they have a stronger appreciation for what they have.

If you are a married man, does your wife appreciate her diamond engagement ring less because you didn't make her pay for half? Maybe you did, so she could truly appreciate the ring, if not you. :)


My wife was a single mother with a 2-year old daughter when we got engaged and married. Although it was long before I found this forum, in true boglehead fashion I took the DeBeers recommended 2-months salary and opened a Coverdale college savings account for her daughter with the engagement ring money. I told her that if she preferred a ring we could spend any part of her daughter's college education fund for an engagement ring. She told me we weren't touching a dime of it and bought herself a cubic zirconia ring on Amazon for $15.

Awww, what a romantic! I can think of no surer route to a mother's heart.
epilnk
 
Posts: 2591
Joined: Wed Apr 18, 2007 7:05 pm

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Cernel » Sun Jan 27, 2013 6:25 am

We have 3 children, each 2 years apart in age. While they were in High School, we sat them down and explained that when they got to college they would be responsible for 50% of the total cost (tuition, room & board, fees, books, other expenses) and we would be responsible for the other 50%. Reason that we choose this approach is that we wanted them to have some teeth in the game. As they grew up, they basically had a decent life without sacrifice and were able to get and do what they were interested in. As they went through High School (private catholic school), although we sacrificed a little to pay for their tuition, I am not sure they fully grasped what we were doing for them, meaning, I think they took it for granted. We felt college was too important for them to take it for granted and that they needed to be involved with the financing so hopefully, they could make the best out of the college experience. We also explained that any scholarships they earned would come off their 50% since they earned it.

We started saving for their college education when each of them were born so by the time the oldest started going to college we had a nice amount saved. What also helped was that our middle child earned a full scholarship. So basically, we had enough saved to cover our college kids expenses without the other 2 kids having to take loans. I just kept a tab and told them that I was the bank and they would need to start paying me back when they became employed. Unknown to them at the time they were going through college, our graduation gift to them was forgiving them of the amount they owed us and for my middle child (the full scholarship winner) we purchased her a new car. Bottom line is that we were able to put 3 kids though college without us borrowing any money and without them having any Student Loans. They began their adult careers debt free.
User avatar
Cernel
 
Posts: 222
Joined: Sun May 04, 2008 11:06 am

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby DonDraper » Sun Jan 27, 2013 7:19 am

Rick Ferri wrote:I paid, but I had rules:

1) The Bank of Dad closes in 4-years, i.e. you've got 4 years to get a degree on my nickel.
2) College is the only inheritance you're getting from me. Don't blow it.
3) You're earning a degree in a subject where you can get a job and have a career.
4) No body piercings or tattoos while I pay the bills.

It worked. All three 20-something children finished in 4 years and they're all progressing well in their chosen careers (and off my payroll). The only one that didn't work was #4. That 's a loooong and very sore story.

Rick Ferri


Curious about #2. What are your plans for your inheritance if you don't pass it to your children? Charity or do you plan to spend it all?
DonDraper
 
Posts: 93
Joined: Sun Mar 25, 2012 3:34 pm

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby finley » Sun Jan 27, 2013 8:22 am

MnD wrote:
finley wrote:Working while in college can be done, but I think it would be very hard to not have it be a distraction from studying. Maybe if you do not have a challenging major it is easier to do


I worked all throughout undergrad for an employer in my field of study - engineering hydrology and graduated with high honors. My senior year I earned credit for a project I was doing at work and also getting paid for. My daughter is at a highly selective engineering school, taking 18-19 credits in engineering physics, is in their honors program and has worked 15-20 hours per week since day 1. Initially it was a menial job but now has a great paying, private funded technical internship position. Most students at this school work - they in in great demand by local employers for smart tech-savvy kids. Many juniors and seniors make enough to pay all their net college costs, especially if they are in-state and/or have a partial scholarship. The school indicates that students will be at a significant disadvantage upon graduation if they haven't had ongoing paid internship experience starting their junior year.

It means less time for partying and other social activities but it can be done. The skills learned to juggle school, work, household responsibilities is invaluable. I also wonder about students that haven't worked a day in their lives other than perhaps a few menial summer jobs. Entering the professional workforce must be quite a shock.

Sounds like pre-med is very different - all about the grades I take it from your post, and perhaps relevant undergrad employment opportunities are limited/nonexistent due to liability and other reasons. But their are "challenging majors" where work while in school is not unusual and very beneficial to graduates.



I did not say it could not be done. I was also an engineering major major and took premed courses on top of that so I know it is difficult. My point is that the vast majority of college age kids will not have the discipline to keep work from affecting school. Kids that age want to have fun sometimes.

I am not sure what kind of jobs you are speaking of, but they were not common where I graduated from. Maybe a few students had paying internships during the school year, but it was not the norm. Most college students will work in retail or service jobs, which offers no experience advantage. Entering the professional workforce was actually not a shock for me. I was used to working very hard with school and actually found work easier than studying all the time and more enjoyable. Saying something like this will not apply to those that work hard in school. For full time students who work hard, school is a job.

My only point is that I do not think it is mandatory that a kid pay some for college. If that is what you choose or you are not able to fully support you child during college, there are ways that college can be done successfully. If you have the financial means, how much you help your child should depend on how serious your child takes school. If there are paying opportunities outside of school (i.e. internships, etc.) that can further their career they obviously should be encouraged, but I do not think the majority of students will have these available.
finley
 
Posts: 24
Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2012 3:45 pm

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby interplanetjanet » Sun Jan 27, 2013 9:26 am

I've gone back and forth on this subject over time.

Unlike many posters here, I'm not a college graduate. I was admitted a few years early and left at 18 when I was on the border of becoming a senior, to pursue a career. While at times early on not having a degree made it more work to match myself to a position, I honestly don't think it made things that much more difficult - certainly before my mid 20's it was no longer a significant factor. My nature to jam my whole leg in once I got a foot in the door, so to speak, may have had a lot to do with this. I've also always been an entrepreneur and have always had some form of self-employment, though this has ranged from being a marginal side-job to my main occupation.

I have had to recognize that most people are not likely to go through life in the same way that I have. Many fields require some formal evidence of advanced education. Still, a considerable number do not, and I wonder with the volume of information and classroom lectures that have become available online if the need for a formal degree program has been lessened for some people. I've been fortunate over the years to have been able to do many things that a college degree is usually associated with, my favorite was teaching advanced courses at the university level.

To make a long story short, due to a special situation my children are likely to get significant need-based aid (hopefully some merit-based aid as well). This is contingent to some degree on them going with a school that uses the FAFSA instead of the CSS/Profile, and since I live in a state with some excellent public university campuses it is likely that they will attend there. I expect that between that and what money I can contribute, they will have their basic expenses covered.

I value much of what a college education offers, but minds have to be ready to receive it. Different people will take different things from the same educational process.
Last edited by interplanetjanet on Sun Jan 27, 2013 9:59 am, edited 2 times in total.
User avatar
interplanetjanet
 
Posts: 2214
Joined: Mon Jan 24, 2011 4:52 pm
Location: the wilds of central California

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Rick Ferri » Sun Jan 27, 2013 9:30 am

DonDraper wrote:
Rick Ferri wrote:I paid, but I had rules:

1) The Bank of Dad closes in 4-years, i.e. you've got 4 years to get a degree on my nickel.
2) College is the only inheritance you're getting from me. Don't blow it.
3) You're earning a degree in a subject where you can get a job and have a career.
4) No body piercings or tattoos while I pay the bills.

It worked. All three 20-something children finished in 4 years and they're all progressing well in their chosen careers (and off my payroll). The only one that didn't work was #4. That 's a loooong and very sore story.

Rick Ferri


Curious about #2. What are your plans for your inheritance if you don't pass it to your children? Charity or do you plan to spend it all?


We're also helping our children to buy their first homes and we help pay for things they need and can't afford, and we'd like to be in a position to help pay for our grandchildren's education. Aside from that, they'll get what's left.

Rick Ferri
Last edited by Rick Ferri on Sun Jan 27, 2013 9:32 am, edited 1 time in total.
Mutual fund investing is simple. There is risk, there is return, and there are costs. All else is marketing.
User avatar
Rick Ferri
 
Posts: 7862
Joined: Mon Feb 26, 2007 11:40 am
Location: Home on the range in Medina, Texas

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby livesoft » Sun Jan 27, 2013 9:31 am

I liked this juxtapositiong:

finley wrote:.... Kids that age want to have fun sometimes.

.... I was used to working very hard with school and actually found work easier than studying all the time and more enjoyable.

My job during college was a break from studying all the time and was fun.
This signature message sponsored by LadyGeek.
livesoft
 
Posts: 35190
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2007 8:00 pm

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Calm Man » Sun Jan 27, 2013 9:36 am

papito23 wrote:My parents could reasonably work themselves through college with their noses to the grindstone (considering wages for menial jobs, tuition, cost of transport, etc), perhaps with a few loans paid off in a couple years. That would have been impossible for me. This question is 16 years away for me, but it seems a very poor use of time to slave away every last hour making minimum wage when those are key periods for career exploration, networking development, attending conferences and presentations, etc. Especially when the degree is expected to yield a wage at least 2x+ higher in just a few years (hence the point of loans). Several of the recommendations here of working for pocket money (10-20 hrs/wk) seem very reasonable.


I agree for the most part. Look when I went to college in the early 70s, tuition, room and board and everything all in at an elite school was about $6000., So a summer job and a few hours doing TA type stuff helped. I had a very heavy courseload and if I had to work a lot it would have dented any free time I had. Fast forward to 8 years ago when my olde daughter started college. Tuition and all in was 50K a year. Then med school -- ditto. No amount of work would make any dent in it. Our deal was simple --- your job is school. Of course have fun but your js school. She is now an intern. The lack of "work" did not hurt her and she is now working 80 hours a week this year. Have I "Made" her work 15 hours a week who knows how that would have affected organic chemistry, etc and her grades. I suppose if one take 10 hours of class a week it might be different but kids in the STEM subjects have classes all day very often with labs, recitations, etc. Working 20 hours a week might bring in minimum wage and "teach them the value of working". Frankly work has a lot more value when they make 50 x the minimum wage. That's my 2 cents and any parent who can afford it should in my opinion support their kid to the greatest extent possible.
Calm Man
 
Posts: 2904
Joined: Wed Sep 19, 2012 9:35 am

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Rick Ferri » Sun Jan 27, 2013 9:50 am

Here is a great book for affluent people who are struggling with the question of what to do with their wealth:

Freedom from Wealth; The Experience and Strategies to Help Protect and Grow Private Wealth

by Charles Lowenhaupt and Don Trone. Lowenhaupt is the chairman and CEO of Lowenhaupt Global Advisors and a managing member of the first U.S. law firm to concentrate in tax law, Lowenhaupt & Chasnoff, LLC, which was established in 1908. Trone is the CEO (Chief Ethos Officer) of 3ethos and former director of the U.S. Coast Guard Academy Institute for Leadership. In 2003, he was appointed by the U.S. Secretary of Labor to represent the investment counseling industry.

The book is an excellent essay on what bothers people most when thinking about what will become of their money when they're no longer around. This issue is a real struggle for many families because people are asking the wrong questions. This book helps ask the right questions.

Rick Ferri
Mutual fund investing is simple. There is risk, there is return, and there are costs. All else is marketing.
User avatar
Rick Ferri
 
Posts: 7862
Joined: Mon Feb 26, 2007 11:40 am
Location: Home on the range in Medina, Texas

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby MathWizard » Sun Jan 27, 2013 9:58 am

texasdiver wrote:
sscritic wrote:
TRC wrote:Anytime someone pays for something (whetherit be some or all), they have a stronger appreciation for what they have.

If you are a married man, does your wife appreciate her diamond engagement ring less because you didn't make her pay for half? Maybe you did, so she could truly appreciate the ring, if not you. :)


My wife was a single mother with a 2-year old daughter when we got engaged and married. Although it was long before I found this forum, in true boglehead fashion I took the DeBeers recommended 2-months salary and opened a Coverdale college savings account for her daughter with the engagement ring money. I told her that if she preferred a ring we could spend any part of her daughter's college education fund for an engagement ring. She told me we weren't touching a dime of it and bought herself a cubic zirconia ring on Amazon for $15.


I think you both got true "gems" in each other.
Congratultions.
MathWizard
 
Posts: 1577
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2011 1:35 pm

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby finley » Sun Jan 27, 2013 10:52 am

livesoft wrote:I liked this juxtapositiong:

finley wrote:.... Kids that age want to have fun sometimes.

.... I was used to working very hard with school and actually found work easier than studying all the time and more enjoyable.

My job during college was a break from studying all the time and was fun.



I like how you have twisted my comments to make your point. How convenient for your argument.

In reference to the first statement, it was a generalized statement for all kids, not me. I think you are naive if you think the majority of college age kids will skip having any fun. I doubt many college age kids would consider work fun.

In reference to the second statement, it was specific to me and a reply to a belief from a prior post that said the first job would be a rude awakening to those who have not worked much during college. This may be correct if the child slacks off and takes what his parents provide for granted, but it did not apply to me.

Supporting your child in college is a personal decision and how much . However, there is NO harm and MUCH benefit to the child if it is fully funded and they take college serious. You can disagree, but from your prior posts I do not think your wife does.
finley
 
Posts: 24
Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2012 3:45 pm

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby DireWolf » Sun Jan 27, 2013 11:38 am

My wife and I have decided to start saving in a 529 plan what we can reasonably afford. When it comes time for our child/children to go to college, we will offer all of that money, whatever amount it turns out to be.

It will be completely up to them on how to spend that money. For instance, if it turns out to be $40k, my kid can choose to go to the state university and have it nearly paid for entirely or go to an expensive private school where the $40k might cover one year. Everything beyond that will be their responsibility. We will go over this plan early in high school, so they can start planning their college choices early. It will also give them motivation to achieve scholarships if they really want to attend an expensive private university.
DireWolf
 
Posts: 220
Joined: Mon May 04, 2009 4:53 pm

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby ks289 » Sun Jan 27, 2013 12:00 pm

DireWolf wrote:My wife and I have decided to start saving in a 529 plan what we can reasonably afford. When it comes time for our child/children to go to college, we will offer all of that money, whatever amount it turns out to be.

It will be completely up to them on how to spend that money. For instance, if it turns out to be $40k, my kid can choose to go to the state university and have it nearly paid for entirely or go to an expensive private school where the $40k might cover one year. Everything beyond that will be their responsibility. We will go over this plan early in high school, so they can start planning their college choices early. It will also give them motivation to achieve scholarships if they really want to attend an expensive private university.


For my calculations, I have seen figures which currently put the entire annual cost (tuition, housing, meals, books, etc) of in state public schools (without any aid) in the low $20,000's. In 10-15 years it could be $40,000 - $50,000 annually.
ks289
 
Posts: 340
Joined: Sun Mar 11, 2012 12:42 pm

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby stoptothink » Sun Jan 27, 2013 12:06 pm

finley wrote:However, there is NO harm and MUCH benefit to the child if it is fully funded and they take college serious.


The entire point of this thread is that the study suggests your statement isn't correct, that kids who have their education fully funded are less likely to take college seriously. A more interesting dynamic is whether you'd be willing to sacrifice your own financial well-being to do so. In the real world, outside of Bogelheads.org, the proportion of parents who can fully fund their child's education without very significantly compromising their own financial situation and future is quite small.
stoptothink
 
Posts: 1367
Joined: Fri Dec 31, 2010 9:53 am

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby MnD » Sun Jan 27, 2013 12:09 pm

sscritic wrote:
MnD wrote:I also wonder about students that haven't worked a day in their lives other than perhaps a few menial summer jobs. Entering the professional workforce must be quite a shock.

I think a Ph.D. program or medical school will do a good job of replacing the "work" you value so highly in preparing them for the professional workforce. You don't need a "job" to learn how to work.


Well it depends on the program. Recall that in engineering and other hard sciences, the universities, even the most elite private ones, waive tuition and fees and pay grad students to attend versus the other way around. They are the workforce for external funded research. Having a proven track record of being able to perform academically at a high level while working at a technical and relevant internship as an undergrad is exactly what top grad schools in these fields are looking for. In other fields it's a different ballgame, but the general position that working while in college is a "distraction" and perhaps only manageable for "easy majors" is not the case in the hard sciences.

And if you don't need the money from your internships for pay for undergrad (parents are funding) you might graduate with an investment net worth of $25K-50K as opposed to a mountain of debt which is increasingly the case for college students. That's not the end of the world in my book.
MnD
 
Posts: 2301
Joined: Mon Jan 14, 2008 12:41 pm

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby sscritic » Sun Jan 27, 2013 12:30 pm

MnD wrote:
sscritic wrote:I think a Ph.D. program or medical school will do a good job of replacing the "work" you value so highly in preparing them for the professional workforce. You don't need a "job" to learn how to work.


Well it depends on the program. Recall that in engineering and other hard sciences, the universities, even the most elite private ones, waive tuition and fees and pay grad students to attend versus the other way around. They are the workforce for external funded research. Having a proven track record of being able to perform academically at a high level while working at a technical and relevant internship as an undergrad is exactly what top grad schools in these fields are looking for. In other fields it's a different ballgame, but the general position that working while in college is a "distraction" and perhaps only manageable for "easy majors" is not the case in the hard sciences.

Since forum rules require that this be personal and actionable and not a discussion about generalities, I will be personal. Both my children got into top schools in their fields: UCSF* for dentistry and UCSD for bio-chemistry. As I previously reported, my daughter had no jobs while in college, except for one at a dentist's office during one year [edit: I think it was 3 hours, one day a week]. I don't even know if that was volunteer work or a paid position. My son didn't work at all as far as I know. If your children were distracted by jobs or if you think they wouldn't have been admitted to graduate school without them, then that is your experience. It wasn't mine.

Neither of my children were shocked when they entered the professional workforce. Again, your experience may have been different; your children may have been shocked, I don't know.

* U.S. News & World Report doesn't rank dental schools. The Pharmacy School was number one and the Medical School was number three. The Dental School did get more money from NIH than any other dental school.
UCSF’s School of Pharmacy ranked first in its field this year, while its School of Medicine tied for third place nationwide, according to a new survey conducted by U.S. News & World Report.

Results are published in the magazine’s 2013 issue of “America’s Best Graduate Schools,” which appeared online today at http://www.usnews.com and will be available on newsstands on April 3.

The UCSF School of Dentistry is the preeminent dental research enterprise in the world. Each year since 1992 it has ranked first among all US dental schools in research funding from the National Institutes of Health.
sscritic
 
Posts: 21858
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 8:36 am

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby 555 » Sun Jan 27, 2013 12:40 pm

We'll go to FAFSA and calculate EFC (very low five figures). That is what we'll pay. Our children won't pay anything. None of us will get loans.

The EFC is designed to be "affordable", in that you should be able to pay it out of current salary, without saving, and without loans, though it may cut into other things such as retirement saving during those years.

If a university tries to charge more than EFC then just cut that institution off the list.
555
 
Posts: 4287
Joined: Thu Dec 24, 2009 7:21 am

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Rodc » Sun Jan 27, 2013 12:41 pm

stoptothink wrote:
finley wrote:However, there is NO harm and MUCH benefit to the child if it is fully funded and they take college serious.


The entire point of this thread is that the study suggests your statement isn't correct, that kids who have their education fully funded are less likely to take college seriously. A more interesting dynamic is whether you'd be willing to sacrifice your own financial well-being to do so. In the real world, outside of Bogelheads.org, the proportion of parents who can fully fund their child's education without very significantly compromising their own financial situation and future is quite small.


I'm not sure that is the message of the study. There are multiple benefits and downsides at play. They are not all of equal importance.

If you pay full ride and the kid graduates with slightly lower grades vs you don't pay and they fail to graduate at all, for example, your attempt to help backfired and the child is far worse off. Or if they graduate with massive debts they may be far worse off even if it helped them be a little more serious. On the other hand if you don't pay, and they graduate with slightly higher grades or with a better work ethic or something, then you helped, but perhaps only modestly.

If the prime goal is to have your child graduate it seems the safer choice is to pay for college. If another prime goal is to have your child be self-sufficient after graduation, my guess is that it is better to pay so they don't have a lot of debt coming out of school. Some of the other goals strike me as worthwhile, especially for some kids. But one has to weigh their importance against the possibility of not achieving the primes goals (at least as I see them).

Also, these are on average results. Any given child is likely to not be average and so this study may provide little insight into how you should proceed with your own child. That is the major weakness of these sorts of studies. On average results may have some value in general when setting government policy or something, but often are not of much use to individuals.
We live a world with knowledge of the future markets has less than one significant figure. And people will still and always demand answers to three significant digits.
Rodc
 
Posts: 10528
Joined: Tue Jun 26, 2007 9:46 am

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby livesoft » Sun Jan 27, 2013 12:49 pm

My spouse read the NYTimes article. She and I agree that this so-called "study" will probably be dis-credited in the future.
This signature message sponsored by LadyGeek.
livesoft
 
Posts: 35190
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2007 8:00 pm

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Calm Man » Sun Jan 27, 2013 1:35 pm

reggiesimpson wrote:I paid for college for both of my children. The fees were mitigated significantly by their aquisition of scholarships. They worked diligently towards degrees that will afford them solid paying careers. They are both graduating on time with high GPAs. If they had to work and/or take out loans during this period it would have impacted their education IMO. It certainly did for me and i didnt want them going through that.


+1
I am getting the sense that parents who can afford to pay for the kids are happy to do so. Parents who can't (appropriately) wish they could but since they can't create straw person arguments about learning values, etc. I can understand where they are coming from but as you, livesoft and many others have said-- if you can afford it how can you ask your kid to work a minimum wage job rather than fully concentrate on their course load. And the extra few hours a day they have, rather than working in the kitchen can be used for cultivating relationships, attending lectures, going to athletic events, sleeping, whatever. I come across people of all types and economic circumstances. I am unaware of any parent who can afford to pay for their kids who does not. And it is their pleasure to do so. Maybe there are a few who won't but I haven't met them.
Calm Man
 
Posts: 2904
Joined: Wed Sep 19, 2012 9:35 am

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Sheepdog » Sun Jan 27, 2013 1:41 pm

We always expected our two sons to earn much of their annual spending needs from junior (middle) school through high school. We didn't say they must, but they did in order to have more than we would give as an allowance. (My parents expected me to as well). In the summers they cut lawns (ours for free) and baby sat . They actually made very good income cutting lawns and trimming hedges. They had to help purchase their old cars in high school and they were able to save some for college. They had to pay their share of liability insurance. One son worked each summer to earn money for the next college year as he did through high school. The second worked for a company under the university co-op program where they worked one semester and went to classes the next which expanded his degree program from 4 to 5 years. He had to pay his living expenses from his salary in the city at which he worked. We paid all other education and living expenses while in school. They had no debt after graduating as engineers.
Last edited by Sheepdog on Sun Jan 27, 2013 1:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.
People should not say everything they think. They should think about everything they say.
User avatar
Sheepdog
 
Posts: 3728
Joined: Tue Feb 27, 2007 3:05 pm
Location: Indiana, retired 1998 at age 65

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Calm Man » Sun Jan 27, 2013 1:43 pm

stoptothink wrote:
texasdiver wrote:
sscritic wrote:
TRC wrote:Anytime someone pays for something (whetherit be some or all), they have a stronger appreciation for what they have.

If you are a married man, does your wife appreciate her diamond engagement ring less because you didn't make her pay for half? Maybe you did, so she could truly appreciate the ring, if not you. :)


My wife was a single mother with a 2-year old daughter when we got engaged and married. Although it was long before I found this forum, in true boglehead fashion I took the DeBeers recommended 2-months salary and opened a Coverdale college savings account for her daughter with the engagement ring money. I told her that if she preferred a ring we could spend any part of her daughter's college education fund for an engagement ring. She told me we weren't touching a dime of it and bought herself a cubic zirconia ring on Amazon for $15.


I actually tried something similar, sort of in jest, with my ex-wife. She had pretty significant school debt when we got engaged, I told her I'd pay off all her debt or she could have half the amount towards a ring. She chose the ring, of course I ended up paying off her undergrad debt shortly after we marred and then for her dental school out of pocket, and we ended up divorced anyway.


I could have predicted that. My second wife, who was 50 at the time, insisted that of course she had to have an expensive engagement ring. A 50 year old woman !! I bought it for her as I could afford it. I assume she sold it by now and that was part of her insurance in case I left her, which I did.
Calm Man
 
Posts: 2904
Joined: Wed Sep 19, 2012 9:35 am

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Grt2bOutdoors » Sun Jan 27, 2013 1:59 pm

livesoft wrote:My spouse read the NYTimes article. She and I agree that this so-called "study" will probably be dis-credited in the future.


+1 Quote of the thread!
"Luck is not a strategy" Asking Portfolio Questions
Grt2bOutdoors
 
Posts: 10939
Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2007 8:20 pm
Location: New York

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby halfnine » Sun Jan 27, 2013 2:02 pm

My wife and I aren't in complete agreement and likely I will also lose out on this one. However, preferably, I would like to not have a set value or set percentage that we would pay for the children's college. Nor would I expect that each child will be treated the same since there is so much variation in possibilities. However, what I would expect is for each child to work 800 hours per year while in university starting immediately upon graduation from high school. They could choose to do it in whatever fashion they want (all during the summer, 16 hours/wk year round, etc) and it could be either paid or unpaid work within reason. Although, preferably, the last year would be spent doing an internship related to their career choice. Provided they did that we'd pay the rest.
halfnine
 
Posts: 332
Joined: Tue Dec 21, 2010 1:48 pm

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby zaboomafoozarg » Sun Jan 27, 2013 2:46 pm

I don't have kids, but if I ever do I'll tell them what I was told - study hard and get good grades/test scores so you don't have to pay for it. Otherwise, plan to pay for it yourself.
User avatar
zaboomafoozarg
 
Posts: 1148
Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2011 12:34 pm

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby Padlin » Sun Jan 27, 2013 3:57 pm

They were told we would pay the price of UMass Board and Tuition where ever those chose to go. They both elected to go to private colleges which have since morphed into universities. With scholarships my daughter graduated with no debt after agreeing to work at the local hospital for 24 months. Between part time work and a handful of small scholarships my son finished with no debt either so it worked out well for both.
Regards | Bob
User avatar
Padlin
 
Posts: 608
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2007 7:46 pm
Location: W Mass

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby MnD » Sun Jan 27, 2013 4:00 pm

555 wrote:We'll go to FAFSA and calculate EFC (very low five figures). That is what we'll pay. Our children won't pay anything. None of us will get loans.

The EFC is designed to be "affordable", in that you should be able to pay it out of current salary, without saving, and without loans, though it may cut into other things such as retirement saving during those years.

If a university tries to charge more than EFC then just cut that institution off the list.


I hope that works out for you but it's very common for universities to offer loans as part of the aid package to cover the difference between costs and EFC.
Even worse, many schools will not cover the gap between costs and federal student loans + EFC, leaving only Parent Plus loans or cosigned private loans to cover the gap if students or parents don't have the cash or free cash flow to cover it.

A common myth is that EFC is what households will be expected to pay.
Unless the school has wonderful endowments in general and is generous with handing out those to your student in particular, EFC can be far below your overall liability.
MnD
 
Posts: 2301
Joined: Mon Jan 14, 2008 12:41 pm

Re: How much do you expect your kids to pay for college?

Postby TomatoTomahto » Sun Jan 27, 2013 4:06 pm

I paid all of my oldest child's undergraduate tuition (at Boston College, as it happens, which was at the time not an unnoticed expense and to which my ex wife contributed little). When my daughter went on to graduate school, she told me that she wanted to do it on her own. She has asked for one loan, $2000, forgiven at the next "gifting opportunity." I slip her cash at times to have her take a trip or have a dinner she couldn't otherwise afford, but she is finishing up her PhD and teaching at a nearby college and is justifiably proud.

My next-to-go-to-college is my son who is a junior in HS now. He burns the candle at both ends as a high school student. His only course that isn't IB (International Baccalaureate) or AP is an honors physics course, but he is studying AP Physics-B and AP Physics-C independently and will be taking the test. He already has 2 AP grades of 5 as a sophomore, including in AP Computer Science, a course he didn't even take. He will be finishing the equivalent of the first two years of college calculus this year, and next year all of his classes will be IB or AP. On Saturdays, he goes to a class in the Columbia Science Honors Program. He is attacking his subjects, and is pumped up from the learning. I fully expect that he will approach college the same way. I mention this not to brag (well, only partially to brag), but to ask the question, where in all of this would he have time for a job? As it is, he seldom gets time to see his girlfriend and other friends, which I think is an important part of growing up.

My father paid for my undergraduate degree, and although I worked during the summer, his view was that you're only young once, and going to school is hard work. The thought that, to prove some Puritanical uber-Boglehead-ish point, I would make my son flip burgers for minimum wage rather than have him learn and rest is, IMO, stupid. I have empathy for those families that are stretched financially, and appreciate that you have to make the best of the cards you're dealt. My argument is not with them. I believe, however, that to cross your arms and refuse to write a check when you can do so without depriving your family is wrong on many levels.
User avatar
TomatoTomahto
 
Posts: 3089
Joined: Mon Apr 11, 2011 1:48 pm

PreviousNext

Return to Personal Finance (Not Investing)

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: hedgetop, Igetit, JDCarpenter, jmg229, Tamales, wcmFun and 34 guests