Posts by Daria:
- With both 529 plans and RESPs, you don’t have to be related to the beneficiary to open the college savings accounts.
- While a 529 Plan allows up to $350,000 lifetime contributions per student, an RESP tops out at $50,000.
- You DO get a tax deduction for money you put into a 529. You do NOT get a tax deduction for funds deposited in an RESP.
- You can open a 529 or an RESP for yourself, not just for others.
- There is an annual contribution limit of $14,000 on 529s, but no annual limit on RESP contributions.
- There are multiple types of both 529s and RESPs available – typically from banks or investment firms.
- Beginner/Intermediate: Browns Canyon in Buena Vista and Bighorn Sheep Canyon in Canon City.
- Advanced: The Numbers in Buena Vista and The Royal Gorge in Canon City.
My oldest is 12 next week. That means only 6 – SIX – years until she goes to college!
Six years is a long time if we’re talking time between hair cuts or time to read a book or even time to deal with a teenager, but time to save enough for college? At today’s prices?
Yes, a little panic is setting in for sure.
When I was asked to write a post about college savings, it seemed like kismet. College savings isn’t something I can continue to put my head in the sand and ignore. I HAVE to get moving on this and learning my options is one of the first steps.
529 Plans vs. RESP College Savings
I hadn’t heard of Registered Education Savings Plans (RESP) before so thought I’d share some basic information for any Canadian readers or those with the option to go to school in Canada (I have a few cousins at University in Canada).
Basically what I’ve gathered is that an RESP is the Canadian equivalent of the United States 529 Plan – with a few differences.
The government will match 20% (up to $500 per year and $7,200 total) of your contributions to the RESP.
For this reason alone, for those of you that are Canadian residents, it sounds like an RESP is definitely worth checking out.
I definitely need to identify as many sources of FREE money as possible if I am going to put all 3 kids through college on my own.
Disclosure: I received compensation for this post . All words and opinions are my own.
If you find yourself in that shopping slump needing a little pick me up, McDonald’s is giving away FREE coffee! Here are the deets:
McDonald’s Restaurants in Colorado Giving Away
WHAT: Free coffee is back! McDonald’s will be giving customers a free small McCafe Coffee for 10 days from Black Friday, November 29 through Sunday, December 8 in the drive thru or inside the restaurant at any participating McDonald’s in the Denver region and throughout Colorado. There are no strings attached and customers do not need to purchase another food item in order to receive the free small coffee.
WHERE: All Colorado McDonald’s Restaurants
WHEN: Black Friday/November 29 – Sunday, December 8
I was asked if I’d be willing to write a post about the upcoming health care changes and share a video about it from RMHP with my readers. I was a little “meh” about it but looked into it further because it was compensated after all.
Then I saw the video.
So funny! It happens to be one of the most creative marketing efforts I’ve seen, so I wanted to share with you.
It is also very reminiscent of a movie my daughter picked to watch during her ACL recovery.
It just made me laugh. So, regardless of how you feel about the upcoming health care plan changes, take a look at this video and decide if you’re going to be a Zombie next year.
In all seriousness, I don’t know how the health care reform has affected you. I’ve heard self employed friends say their health insurance costs have increased 50%, others that say the plan they currently have won’t be offered next year.
I am very lucky to work for a company that pays my health insurance costs. They had to make some adjustments too because to keep the plans we had this year would have cost them an additional $1 MILLION dollars a year.
Thankfully my plan is still available and the cost to me is the same, but having had to be self insured in the past, I know how difficult it can be.
Have you been affected? Is the Zombie Apocalypse going to infect you?
Disclosure: I received compensation for this post – all words and opinions are my own.
This is the time of year when kids are headed back to school and back to music opportunities like Band and Orchestra. I am ALL FOR diversifying interests and supporting my kids trying new things, so agreed my daughter could play the cello this year.
The Money Smart Tip I learned when my stepson played and that continues to be true 6 years later with my daughter is:
It is WAY cheaper to buy an instrument than rent one.
I went to the information session and looked at the places where you can rent an instrument. A cello is $42 per month to rent. Then I went on Amazon and found a whole kit for right around $200.
Buy versus Rent
Let’s do the math, shall we?
Assuming my daughter only participates in Orchestra for one year (worst case $ scenario), we will need a cello for 8 months.
8 months x $42 per month = $336
I bought it for $143 and will likely sell it for $75 or better on Craigslist or through the school.
$143 – $75 = $68 total investment
Total savings per year = $336 – $68 = $268.
No, this is not a high end heirloom cello. This isn’t an instrument to keep in the family and pass down generation to generation. I’m sure it will not have the full bodied sound that you could get from a more expensive instrument.
But this is an 11 year old kid and her first year playing. What are the odds it will sound like anything better than nails on a chalkboard for the first year anyway?
IF she decides she wants to stick with it and the quality of sound becomes important we can always upgrade at that point.
But for now? I’m taking my $143 cello home to my very excited daughter and will be very excited along with her that it didn’t cost me $300+!
I love whitewater rafting but haven’t gone in AGES. My family went a few years ago, but Chloe was only a baby so I stayed back with her. I did get to go a couple of times with work – talk about a fun marketing event – but I’d like to go with my family. I can’t wait to head out there this summer!
Here’s the press release:
Looking for something fun to do with friends or the whole family? White water rafting down the Arkansas River is a good place to start! River Runners offers half day trips, full day trips , ¾ day trips, and various adventure packages out of both our Buena Vista rafting location and our Canon City rafting location.
This summer we are offering a special 15% off discount by using the promo code: DISCOVERCO. Don’t wait! This is a great deal to raft down Colorado’s Premiere River – The Arkansas River!
Beginner/intermediate trips are great for families or beginners and offer a fun, wild time down class III rapid sections of the Arkansas River. The advanced portions of the river are great for adventure seekers who want to have fun and paddle hard. The advanced sections offer class IV and class V rapids. All full day trips include a riverside deli-style lunch that will allow you to take in the beautiful views of the Arkansas River and the various canyons that River Runners rafts through. The half-day trips are great to pair with a Zip-Line Package, Horseback riding package or other adventure packages! We offer various start times for trips out of both locations, which allows for flexible scheduling for your entire group.
Whitewater Rafting down the Arkansas River offers groups with a fun and fast vacation option. Overnight trips allow you to get out for the weekend and enjoy what this amazing River has to offer. If you love adventure and being outside, this is the trip you have been waiting for. The above average snow pack this past winter has allowed for continuously rising water levels that will carry us well into the 2013 season. Don’t miss out on this adventure; call us today!
Summer 2013 Rafting Special!
15% off Discount on any trip down the Arkansas River with River Runners!* with the promo code: DISCOVERCO http://www.discovercolorado.com/dealpopup.php?id=19050404&dealtype=crncoupon or call 800-723-8987 to book today!
Book now for a great summer adventure! Spots going fast!
Disclosure: I will get to take a friend rafting for posting this special! Come with us!
I’m so excited to try out the 40lbs of chicken I’m getting for participating in this campaign! Yes, because free chicken rocks, but also because if I like this chicken, then this is an AWESOME price and concept for fresher, faster and cheaper meat. Here’s the spiel:
How does Zaycon Foods manage to provide such high quality super fresh meat and produce to its customers at such low prices? The answer is strength in numbers. And not our numbers, yours!
Zaycon Foods can sell its products at bulk rate prices to individual consumers and families because our unique sales event business model brings lots of people together, adding all their purchasing power into a combined bulk food purchase. And when you buy as part of a group that’s committing to such a large purchase, the power is in the hands of the purchaser! It’s the ultimate group buy in terms of both price and consumer empowerment.
You can pre-select exactly what you want to order from a given Zaycon sales event – sometimes you may want to stock up on our amazing meaty back ribs and sometimes it might be all about the Zaycon bacon – and then, on the day of the sales event, you and a whole big bunch of your neighbors will find yourselves in a nearby parking lot watching as an entire tractor trailer’s worth of high quality natural food is unloaded into all of your cars! You will be amazed at how quickly one of our refrigerated trucks goes from being filled with natural, fresh chicken or hundreds of gallons of grade A non-homogenized milk to being empty and back on its way to the farm!
A Zaycon Foods truck sales event often lasts less time than you would spend on a trip to the grocery store, yet you will leave with a whole lot more food than you’d get at the market, and for much better prices, too!
When you use the Zaycon Foods sales event as your preferred place to purchase meats, milk, and any of our other fine products, you get advantages even beyond the bulk pricing that comes with our special sales model. You also have the peace of mind of knowing exactly what you’re going to get! A trip to the grocery store can involve wasted time wandering around looking for various foods spread out across the store; at a Zaycon Foods parking lot meat truck delivery (or milk or berries or fish delivery, too!) you have pre-ordered your foods, so all you have to do is show up and wait for our friendly staffers and volunteers to load up your car.
Also, unlike in the grocery store, the prices you will pay for a Zaycon Foods product are locked in on our website, so you will know how much you are going to spend before you have committed to a purchase.
At a supermarket, you might pay one price for chicken on one day, and then a higher price on another day. With Zaycon, you decide that you want to order a case of our fresh boneless skinless chicken breasts, you check the price and then you commit to it, knowing that from that moment on, we are committed to getting you your fresh, natural food!
To Get Started Click on this link.
As part of the US Family Guide Blogging Network I’ve been offered the opportunity to try the Cowboy Fit Zone Workout Program. Because it’s almost bathing suit season and I really need something to get me jump started I’m gonna do it! The program claims it will help me shed 12 inches in 28 days. Want to join me?
I’m Cowboy Ryan Ehmann ”AS SEEN ON ABC SHARK TANK” and I can’t wait to share this program with you. Are you “TIRED OF WORKING OUT WITH MINIMUM RESULTS? CAN’T GET RID OF BELLY FAT? For only $9.95 LEARN THE Cowboy Fit Zone SECRET at LOSE12INCHES.com. IT’S SCIENTIFICALLY PROVEN AND SWEEPING THE NATION BECAUSE IT WORKS. YOU WILL DISCOVER that YOU’VE BEEN WORKING OUT WRONG YOUR ENTIRE LIFE. My client “Daymond John, Founder of FUBU and Reality TV Star of ABC Shark Tank is doing the Cowboy Fit Zone training so why not join him. You will learn the scientific reason why you are not losing fat with any other workout. Come on, let’s get started today. Wooo Hoooo … That’s What I’m Talking About! VISIT: www.Lose12inches.com
I have to admit that I haven’t filed my taxes yet and I’m not going to get them out by the end of the day. If you have easy returns that you need to get submitted or want to file an extension (like me) then check out the Turbo Tax website. I’ve used them to file my taxes for the past 10 years and LOVE how easy they are, plus how affordable – especially if you qualify for the FREE version.