Tag Archives: children

Divorced? About to Be? There’s an App for That!

If you are divorced, and have kids to plan for, there may be an app for that. Seems there's an app for almost everything these days. If you're recently divorced, or about to be, there are many options to help parents to co-parent without even having to talk much. These apps or...
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Early Neutral Consultations, Navigating Your Divorce

Navigating your divorce can be painstaking, especially when you are expected to understand the way things work from a legal requirement perspective. If you've never been divorced before why should you know, right? Early Neutral Consultations help divorcees understand the road map and can have many beneficial effects from process choice, asset distribution and...
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Parenting During and After Divorce

Parenting during and after divorce can present many challenges. Many people try to assert themselves as the better parent during a family break up.  Typically, it is fuelled by anger at their spouse.  But this is what is really happening.  I wish I could make all of my clients, who have children and who are...
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The Child of Divorce

During divorce, adults often have such a hard time understanding our own emotions that it's difficult to project how decisions might be affecting our children.  When I meet with divorcing clients I always ask how the children are faring.  Almost everyone says they are handling the divorce well.  I never believe them.  Not really.  My...
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Re-marriage? Co-habitation? Really?

Don't you remember saying, "Never again!"?. Re-marriage is something we don't think about while going through the divorce process nor is it something we think immediately afterwards either. Coming to terms with our solitude and finally embracing our independence are often long-haul transitions. Who wants to feel like they're going back to...
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“Honey Boo-Boo” Trusts a Good Idea?

Honey Boo-Boo's Mom advocates she is doing the right thing by her kids by putting all the money the show series generates into Trust funds for her kids...but is she doing the right thing? http://news.yahoo.com/mama-june-sets-trust-fund-honey-boo-boo-181043925.html If you have ever been on an airplane the survival instructions say something to the effect of, "If the airbags deploy place...
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Should you help the kids and compromise your retirement?

Home prices in Ontario up 17% in four years

OK, so the kids are growing up and you want to help them start their adult life.  Maybe your motivation is somewhat altruistic?  Helping the kids out helps them become more independent ~ maybe even to the point of moving out?  After the financial dependence of growing up and educating them and even maybe paying for a wedding do we still need to do more?  There are a few things to consider…..

First, can you afford to be helpful?  Life is so expensive these days.  Depending on where you live it can cost quite a sum to own your own home and save for your retirement years.  Housing in the city of Toronto, for example is getting quite pricey.  Have a look a this article for some comments on recent housing trends. http://www.thespec.com/news/article/766778–home-prices-in-ontario-up-17-in-four-years

Although, I’m sure housing in the city is far above the national average of $369,339 then looking for the down payment can be a daunting task. Saving 25% is looking at a net cash savings of about $93,000 which might take kids, starting out at entry level jobs, some time to save for.

Now that we have ascertained that it might be hard for the kids to take the initial step of being on their own let’s look at your current situation. People often ask me how much one needs to save for retirement but I often answer…it depends on what you want to do in your retirement years.  If you want to travel then you might need more that the person who is content to sit and watch TV all day long.

Either way, if you live in the city of Toronto (or similar from a perspective of housing costs) then your home is probably at least $500,000 and then you want to retire at the age of 65.  Assuming that you will live to age 90 that leaves you with 25 years of savings for income replacement needs.  How much to you anticipate spending a year?  Assuming the mortgage is paid off and you have no liabilities, would it be reasonable to assume that you would need $60,000 in after-tax money?  So what’s $60,000 times 25 years? $1,500,000!!! So if you house is worth $500,000 and you need $1,500,000 to float your retirement then you need about $2 million in net worth to retire!  That’s a lot of dough!  (I realize that you may get some return on investment and you will also be receiving CPP and OAS and that’s where a financial plan is necessary.  If you are lucky you also have a pension plan to help with your cash flow needs).  Regardless of your supplemented income sources you will still have to save a bundle to retire in a lifestyle that is comfortable.

When we take airplane flights the steward(ess) tells us that in the case of an emergency to place the air bags on ourselves and then on any young children.  The reason is that we have to be OK so that we can help them.  I think that, as parents, we want to help our kids but we have to be OK to do so or we aren’t really doing them any favours.  So my advice is to ensure you take the time to do a financial plan before you give away your money to your kids.  After all, you don’t want to be living in their basement at the age of 75, do you?

The Dalai Lama and Collaborative Family Law

I listened to the Dalai Lama teaching the Heart Sutra in his address in the University of Indiana this weekend.  As one of the worlds leaders of peace his heart sutra explained the importance of having compassion in our lives.  Compassion, he says, must be taught to young children through the love of their parents....
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