What is a RESP?

What is a RESP?

Worried about your child’s education? In the past 20 years, more and more young Canadians are choosing to attend university, but the cost of post-secondary education has risen substantially. If and when your child chooses to go to university, how will you be able to afford it?

You can start putting money aside for your child’s post-secondary education with the help of a Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP). When you use this type of special savings account your money will grow surprisingly fast – especially since Canada Education Savings Grants and the Canada Learning Bond are offered exclusively to RESP contributors.

How do I open a RESP?

Opening an RESP is relatively simple. All you need is your child’s Social Insurance Number (SIN) and an RESP Provider. Most financial institutions offer RESPs. Since the provider you choose is responsible for managing your contributions, you’ll want to carefully choose the right one.

How do I use my RESPs?

Once your child has registered with a qualifying educational institution, they will become eligible to receive payments from the RESP you set up for them. In order to qualify, the course they choose must last at least 3 consecutive weeks, with a total minimum of 10 hours of work or instruction per week.

If your child decides that they do not want to attend post-secondary education after high school, you will not be taxed on the amount you contributed to the RESP. You will, however, have to pay taxes on any money earned in interest and pay back any grant money that was given to you from the government. You should know that you would be taxed at a regular tax level, plus 20 percent more.

Learn more at CanLearn.ca.

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