An RESP beneficiary is eligible to receive up to $7,200 in government grants, and more.
Post-secondary education can help your child achieve their lifelong dreams, but it can also come with an expensive price tag as tuition fees continue to rise each year.
In fact, most recent surveys show that the average four-year university tuition is upwards of $90,000. But this doesn’t mean that education for your child is impossible: it just means you need to plan and invest properly.
A Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) is a Government-registered savings plan intended to assist funding post-secondary education after high school. (Learn Why an RESP is Great for Education Savings)
RESPs can be opened for a child, yourself, or another adult. The person who opens the plan is known as the RESP “subscriber”, and the person who receives the educational assistance payments (EAPs) from the plan is called the “beneficiary”. (Learn about the 3 Types of Registered Education Savings Plan)
Aside from growing investments tax-free within the RESP, another financial advantage of RESPs are the benefits of two types of additional funding:
Canadian Education Savings Grant (CESG)
Eligible children with an RESP can receive lifetime government grants of up to $7,200 and bonds of up to $2,000!
The amount you’ll receive is calculated as 20% of the first $2,500 in annual contributions (up to $500 per year). This immediate 20% return is a great incentive to invest in an RESP for your child.
Canada Learning Bond
Children from low-income families may be eligible to receive government funding through the Canada Learning Bond. This money helps to pay the costs of a child’s full- or part-time studies after high school at a variety of education institutions.
Unlike the CESG, no personal contributions to an RESP are required to receive the CLB. The Government of Canada contributes up to $2,000 to an RESP for an eligible child. This includes $500 for the first year of eligibility and $100 each year the child continues to be eligible (up to and including the benefit year in which they turn 15).
Canada Child Benefit program
Another way to boost your RESP contributions is to contribute all the payments you receive from the Canada Child Benefit program.
While this isn’t necessarily government money for education, it is a smart plan because the more contributions you make to your RESP over time, the more you will receive in government grants.
If you start early enough, then these savings will grow much more over the years from RESP interest and investments.