In all honesty, this year has been kicking me hard from all sides. I mean, I’ve put in the extra effort to plan and prep and just be on top of things, but with so many spanners being thrown into the works, I’m surprised I can even get to blogging lately. We started a whole new chapter with our toddler going to creche and that was insane. Then the cost of extra mural activities almost knocked my wind out! So I asked the question on my social media platforms: Are extra mural activities burning a hole in your pocket?
From the engagement on my posts on Instagram and Facebook, it’s clear that I’m not the only one feeling the pinch. Excitingly though, I teamed up with Liberty to come up with ways to avoid these extra murals from burning a hole in your pocket (and mine!). The timing couldn’t be better, right?
The first month of school is over, WE SURVIVED!! So now we need to plan our year ahead and make provision for unexpected events that we don’t usually budget for. Here’s what you can keep in mind when planning for the year ahead.
Extra-mural activities – Added costs and time constraints
The cost of sports like rugby, netball, cricket and tennis requires specialized equipment like shoes, uniforms, shin guards, rackets, bats and balls. In addition, you’ll need to pay for transport to get your child to and from the school as well as pay for any medical costs as a result of injury during sports.
While these costs are understandable, have you considered the cost of taking time off work to support your child at their various sporting events? Do you have enough leave available or will you need to take unpaid leave?
Charitable giving may catch you off guard
We all know that schools require additional support to maintain or grow its existing infrastructure. Some schools may have feeding schemes for underprivileged families and children. During the year, your children may come home with forms requesting donations, or those dreaded raffles where you need to collect cash from friends and family.
You don’t want the school to think you’re an uncharitable miser, so it’s best to put aside some money for these charitable events. You could decide to do this at the beginning of the year or you could include it in your monthly budget.
Extra Educational Support
Nobody expects to hear the news that their child has a learning incapacity or that they need extra mathematics or science classes. Unfortunately, many parents hear this unexpected news every year. Ideally, you want your children to succeed at school. You shouldn’t have to spare any expense when it comes to giving your child all the education support you require.
If you find yourself in this situation, you may want to consider cutting back on unnecessary spending in the home. This means less take away food and entertainment, perhaps even eliminating a holiday from the annual calendar. Whatever you decide to do, make sure that you child doesn’t see this as punishment but as your commitment to wanting the best for them.
Are extra mural activities burning a hole in your pocket?
Liberty have give me these tips to share with my audience on how to prevent that continuously burning hole in your pocket
It’s not too late to start
If you have not started an education savings plan yet, it is not too late. You just need to understand what your saving and funding goals are.
For most people, trying to save the full lump sum for a child’s education is not always possible. Aim to keep your education costs at a fixed percentage of your monthly budget by funding increases in education costs through your savings.
Paying for fee increases
It is likely that the increase in school fees will be more than your salary increase each year. Education costs have risen by between 9% and 10% each year. Salary increases have not matched this figure. Your first goal is to save so that you can make up this difference without education taking a bigger bite out of your household finances.
Funding the grade gap
Your second goal is to fill the gap between high school and primary school fees, as you will be paying around 20% more once your child starts high school. In fact, even primary school fees often increase with each grade, over and above the normal annual inflationary fee increases. A Grade One’s school fees tend to be lower than a Grade Five’s.
As soon as your child starts Grade One, immediately increase your savings by the difference between primary and high school fees. You will then be setting aside a realistic percentage of your salary for your child’s 12 years of education and the savings will supplement the annual fee increases in high school.
Now here is the chance for you to win a children’s lunch recipe book, a really cool lunch box, and a Liberty sports bag!
All you need to do is tell me what are your tips for cutting back and ensuring you are able to afford the cost of extra mural activities?
Your answers must be given in either my Facebook competition post or my Instagram competition post. You can add it in the comments section below for extra entries. Engage as much as possible with me on this topic on any of my platforms where you see the above image. Oh, and a tag a friend or two!
Competition closes at midnight tomorrow, Thursday the 7th of February 2019 and the winner will be announced on Friday the 8th of February 2019. Open to South African Residents only.
Tata for now,