Author Topic: if there's one thing you'd give your child.......  (Read 5071 times)

payitoff

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if there's one thing you'd give your child.......
« on: January 30, 2014, 12:16:20 PM »
What would it be? choose from below:

a. funds invested in stocks
b. cash to put down for a house
c. fully funded college fund / cash to pay for college
d. paid for house
e. life insurance paid from year 1
f. something else - (state what it is)

galliver

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Re: if there's one thing you'd give your child.......
« Reply #1 on: January 30, 2014, 01:28:19 PM »
f. Skills! Because every single ability you have can be spun as a job in case of need! You can always cook, clean, care for others' children (as well as your own), fix things or make things for others, and so on. The fact that my parents took us camping for every vacation and that I was good with kids (possibly due to helping with my sisters and their friends) probably helped me get a summer camp job. I got to hike, climb, kayak, and raft all over Northern California on the camp's dime for 2 months, I just had to watch 15 teenagers while I was at it. Much preferable to being stuck behind a counter or a desk that whole time. I'm pretty sure I got my scholarship to college primarily because I told my interviewer that I went on a 48 mile, 2 day hike a month previously due to not wanting to miss that opportunity. Basically, skills = options!

But if we're talking material/financial, I'll go with c. cash for college. I'm thinking set amount to pay college expenses as necessary and then they get remainder (if any) upon graduation. OR they present an alternative business/education plan and get the money if it's feasible. Granted, these are 2+ years down the road hypothetical children.

Cheddar Stacker

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Re: if there's one thing you'd give your child.......
« Reply #2 on: January 30, 2014, 01:52:50 PM »
F. - MMM. It's been life changing for me.

If I had to pick A-E, I would choose A as I think other than maybe C it has the biggest upside and potential for return on investment.

mxt0133

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Re: if there's one thing you'd give your child.......
« Reply #3 on: January 30, 2014, 01:53:21 PM »
What age are we talking about, toddlers, pre-teens, teenagers, young adults?

For teenagers or under I'm going for skills as galliver said.  I want them to be self-reliant as early as possible.  Aside from skills I want to expose them to how the world works the good and bad so they aren't as shell shocked or naive as I was when I started as a young professional.

From there I will start them with an investment account and allow them to manage it with some guidance and let them make mistakes as early as possible.

brand new stash

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Re: if there's one thing you'd give your child.......
« Reply #4 on: January 30, 2014, 02:04:49 PM »
a. funds invested in stocks
b. cash to put down for a house
c. fully funded college fund / cash to pay for college
d. paid for house
e. life insurance paid from year 1
f. something else - (state what it is)

I think A, B, and C would be AWESOME!. They are all somewhat transferable, and the best one is probably which ever one is higher in amount.

D. would be nice, but limiting, do you really want to live in that particular house, what if some other place better meets your needs.
E. would never even impact your kid, the only people who would benefit from that would be your kid's beneficiaries down the line.

F. is obviously love.  But I think you are looking for financial things to give them, so that's probably not responsive to the question.

payitoff

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Re: if there's one thing you'd give your child.......
« Reply #5 on: January 30, 2014, 03:04:46 PM »
i always ask this around successful people i know, and most of the answers are either A or B, they said with C its quite a gamble, coz it is not a guarantee that your kid will succeed with the college he decides to pick and we pay for, and i for one switched careers at 28 years old., after my parents paid for my 4 year degree in a totally different field.

one friend answered me that the best gift he ever got was a downpayment for a house from his parents coz getting married and starting over with a spouse is easier when they got some help with their biggest expense.

very wonderful insights! keep 'em comin!

Worsted Skeins

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Re: if there's one thing you'd give your child.......
« Reply #6 on: January 30, 2014, 03:30:23 PM »
So much depends upon the kid.  Our academically oriented kid is graduating from college in May without debt.  But our financial support covers only part of the cost.  He was offered merit aid and the deal was that he had to maintain his GPA.  If my son was not serious about education, I doubt if I would be as generous.  Or I would have encouraged a less academically focused kid to investigate tech programs at the community college or something.

My kid had a nest egg going into college.  Some of this came from larger gifts (grandma) but I will confess that I invested almost every birthday or holiday cash gift ($5 here or $25 there) until he was old enough to lust for some things.  Then half was invested.  Add to this money he earned doing yard work for neighbors, cash from part time jobs in the summer and 4-H awards, etc. The nest egg covered books and college spending money as well as the cost of studying in Europe one summer.

He is graduating without having touched his 100 shares of Hasbro (a gift that we gave him at age 5) because he likes the dividend checks. 

So maybe we are giving him something else too. We have been very forthright in our financial discussions.  He is a notorious tightwad, the kid who keeps a $5 sewing machine in his dorm to repair his clothes and also has a case of homebrew in the closet.   

I think he was born a Mustachian!  He even found a Mustachian girlfriend!

bogart

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Re: if there's one thing you'd give your child.......
« Reply #7 on: January 30, 2014, 08:17:38 PM »
C, without question, assuming the kid is one who can/will take college seriously.

And I'd carry E on myself prior to achieving C, but I don't think that's what you mean by E. 

Also F, my own financial independence -- the ability to support myself (including once I cannot work) forever.  This doesn't need to be FIRE, I'm fine with it being FI through work, but I don't expect to be able to work to support myself forever, so I do need to save.  I don't want to need to rely on my (adult) children to provide for me.

Insanity

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Re: if there's one thing you'd give your child.......
« Reply #8 on: January 30, 2014, 08:20:45 PM »
F:   The ability to think for themselves.

Everything else will come from that.  Even skills.

ace1224

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Re: if there's one thing you'd give your child.......
« Reply #9 on: January 31, 2014, 06:40:04 AM »
we are doing a version of C with our son.  i have money set aside and contribute to it, but i'm going to make him take out student loans.  on the day he graduates my present will be, we saved this much and i will apply it to the student loans for you.  in theory the money should pay for up to 5 years at a state school in NC. 
hopefully with us as (hopefully) good examples he won't take out more in loans than he needs.  and hopefully he won't need the extra "super senior" year. 

galliver

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Re: if there's one thing you'd give your child.......
« Reply #10 on: January 31, 2014, 12:29:36 PM »
we are doing a version of C with our son.  i have money set aside and contribute to it, but i'm going to make him take out student loans.  on the day he graduates my present will be, we saved this much and i will apply it to the student loans for you.  in theory the money should pay for up to 5 years at a state school in NC. 
hopefully with us as (hopefully) good examples he won't take out more in loans than he needs.  and hopefully he won't need the extra "super senior" year.

There are currently some programs that do BS-Masters in 5 years. Also, some programs like Architecture are 5 years by design. Or the extra year could be for a lucrative double-major. "Super-senior" doesn't mean he slacked off. I think it's great you're prepared.

La Bibliotecaria Feroz

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Re: if there's one thing you'd give your child.......
« Reply #11 on: January 31, 2014, 06:00:31 PM »
I have such mixed feelings of this one. I was personally lucky and got TWO of them--fully paid for college was the idea. Then when I went to a state school and graduated in three years, there was enough left over for the down payment on a house!

Nine years and a couple of bad decisions later, it was all gone... we were flat broke and our credit trashed. (Had to short-sell our house). Had we not had the money, we would have had to save longer and would not have gotten in so deep so quickly.

That said, my kids will probably have the same arrangement--a pot of money that they can use to pay for college and keep the leftovers for a house or wedding or starting a business or whatever, giving them an incentive to make wise decisions--as my grandfather is already funding their 529s. Hopefully we'll be able to set a good enough example for them that they will not repeat our mistakes.

NumberJohnny5

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Re: if there's one thing you'd give your child.......
« Reply #12 on: January 31, 2014, 11:22:14 PM »
Another F here.

I'd want to give them critical thinking skills. The ability to think for themselves, instead of blindly believing what someone else tells them to believe.

Instead of giving them money for university, I'd spend money now on enriching their minds. Whether by traveling, or buying a computer for them to tinker with, toys that make you think, whatever.

And before I'd think about throwing lots of cash at them, I'd make sure we (wife and I) were well off first. By doing so, I'm buying peace of mind for my kids, they won't have to worry about how they'll support dear ol' mom and dad in our advanced age.

Plus, I have a feeling our family will be spread around the globe. We'll need extra funds just to visit them all.

Hadilly

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Re: if there's one thing you'd give your child.......
« Reply #13 on: February 01, 2014, 02:08:06 AM »
F. The ability to delay gratification (see Stanford Bing marshmallow study) and a growth mindset (see Carol Dweck's work).

I see both of those attributes as key to moving successfully through the world.

MrsPete

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Re: if there's one thing you'd give your child.......
« Reply #14 on: February 02, 2014, 09:40:16 AM »
Definitely education.  And by that, I mean both the ability to take care of oneself and one's home as well as formal education. 

It goes back to that old saying, Give a man a fish and he eats for a day.  Teach a man to fish and he eats for a lifetime. 

Money for a house, etc. would be appreciated, but eduction is the ability to provide for oneself and future family forever.

soccerluvof4

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Re: if there's one thing you'd give your child.......
« Reply #15 on: March 04, 2014, 11:00:53 AM »
Depends on how much A would be. But mostly likely C if i had to pick A-d along with a whole lot of F's that dont cost anything!

goatmom

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Re: if there's one thing you'd give your child.......
« Reply #16 on: March 04, 2014, 03:07:39 PM »
F.  Work ethic

EscapeVelocity2020

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Re: if there's one thing you'd give your child.......
« Reply #17 on: March 04, 2014, 10:22:04 PM »
I'm also in the F category, good personal finance habits and knowledge.  I can give my children an obscene inheritance (from my perspective), if I so choose (haven't thought enough about charity other than I want to actively participate and not just write checks) or can't help myself (I'm not a big spender, but market returns on my current portfolio compounding over 40 - 50 years could be quite a sum), but I also lean toward C a little bit, that intend to do that for them if I am able.  I posted a little rant on my blog about how difficult the US makes saving and paying for college, it really is infuriating for something that seems to be becoming a big problem. 
« Last Edit: March 05, 2014, 12:39:56 PM by EscapeVelocity2020 »

marty998

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Re: if there's one thing you'd give your child.......
« Reply #18 on: March 05, 2014, 01:40:16 AM »
F: That we leave the world cleaner, greener, more peaceful and more tolerant than we found it.

zolotiyeruki

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Re: if there's one thing you'd give your child.......
« Reply #19 on: March 05, 2014, 09:09:57 AM »
F.  Work ethic
This.  The rest can be obtained through work ethic.

I'm reminded of a billionaire who, in his will, set conditions on his kids' (or grandkids'--I can't seem to find the story, so it may be an urban legend) inheritance--they had to have completed college, been married to the same person for 10 years, spent time overseas, done some sort of volunteer work, held a job for a number of years, etc, before they could inherit the $10 million he had set aside for each.  In other words, "prove you're worth $10 million, then you'll get it."

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Re: if there's one thing you'd give your child.......
« Reply #20 on: March 10, 2014, 06:39:05 PM »
Since I'm the educator as well as the parent, F is assumed.

About to start on A. College is likely but not guaranteed.

halfmutt

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Re: if there's one thing you'd give your child.......
« Reply #21 on: March 12, 2014, 06:42:01 AM »
If possible, we would choose "all of the above"....

We have chosen "C".  As it turns out, A B and D will be covered.  We've always talked about family finance with the kids from the time they could understand what money was.  Involved them in planning and executing ways of pulling off big purchases or vacations in frugal ways (I lead this effort because I, apparently, am a black-belt tightwad).  Both our kids chose to work as soon as they were old enough with the goal to fully fund their own ROTH-IRA accounts.  They both knew how we valued our ROTH accounts, so it was natural for them to think they each needed one.  So, both of them are now in college (fabulous in-state universities) and hold part time jobs to continue funding their accounts.  Both have enough in their ROTH accounts to put a down payment on their own places - or at this rate of savings and growth - won't be long before being able to pay cash!

If we weren't FI or money was an issue, then I would choose F - skills in managing personal finance.