This post is sponsored by the Florida Prepaid College Board through my role as a Believer Blogger. All thoughts are my own.
Florida Prepaid Open Enrollment Ends 2/28/18. Learn More at www.FloridaPrepaid.com. Use PROMO CODE RUNSIT1718 to Save $25 On Your Application Fee.
One of our family traditions is making our New Year’s goals together. Every year on January 1, we sit together and come up with a list of what we’d like to accomplish in the coming year, both individually and as a family. Here’s our list for 2018:
As you can see, travel is high on our list of family priorities. And travel, of course, takes money. So how do we do this without breaking the bank or neglecting our other financial obligations?
Well, the answer is both simple and complicated: save money and make good financial choices. We do this by:
- doing lots of research
- shopping for sales and bargains
- traveling off-season
- making purchases with hotel, airline, and credit card points
- setting (and not exceeding) a budget for each trip
- prioritizing our purchases and spending less money on the things like expensive cars and eating out (things that are less important to us than traveling)
- sticking to a monthly budget
- avoiding debt – if we can’t afford it, we don’t buy it
Avoiding debt is a biggie for us. That includes current debt for our family AND future debt for our kids. By planning now, we’re paving the way for our kids to start their careers after college with minimal (or NO) debt. Because the reality is kind of alarming.
Alarming Fact #1: Student loans are now the number two source of debt in America, topped only by mortgages (as reported by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York).
Alarming Fact #2: Student loans made up just 3.3% of total household debt in 2003, with a sum of $240.7 billion. That sum is now more than $1.4 trillion (!!!), or about 10% of all U.S. household debt.
Alarming Fact #3: One in six American adults, or 44 million people, has a student loan.
So, as I mentioned above, our family avoids debt at all costs. If we can’t afford a trip (or any other large purchase), then we don’t buy it. We also do our best to stick to a monthly budget. By doing this, we ensure that all of our necessary expenses are covered before we consider unnecessary/luxury purchases. And, of course, one of our absolute necessities is saving for college – via our Florida Prepaid College Plans. Every month, we pay less than $160 (total) for both girls.
College savings? Check.
Peace of mind? Check.
More travel? Heck YES!
Open Enrollment for Florida Prepaid runs until 2/28/18, so you still have time to research your options and purchase a plan. Learn more at www.FloridaPrepaid.com, and don’t forget to use use promo code RUNSIT1718 to save $25 on your application fee. And the enrollment process isn’t long or complicated. It should only take you about 15 minutes – a pretty small amount of time for something that could impact your entire family in such a huge way!