We’ve all heard the older generation say that “as you get older, life goes by faster.” It’s all fun and games until you realize… they’re right! It seems like only yesterday that we were rafting down the river and flooding Calgary’s sunlit patios, let alone celebrating New Year’s Eve. With the year already almost a third over, it’s time to buckle down and start planning for your future.
Now, we know that not everyone follows the traditional path in life these days, nor should they, but it’s still important to plan for those potential events, regardless of what order they happen in. Here are three life milestones that you may or may not plan to hit someday. If you do end up there, you’ll be glad that you prepared for it. ATB Prosper, ATB Financial’s digital investment experience, is here to save the day, with a $200 investment giveaway to help you get started. Scroll down for more details.
Milestone #1: Getting Married
We’d love to say that weddings are all about love, happiness and spending time with friends and family, but they also cost a lot of money. Depending on your tastes, weddings can range from simple, classic affairs to the whole nine yards. According to the Better Business Bureau (BBB), the average wedding costs $30,717, when you factor in the venue, rings, honeymoon, photographer, DJ, flowers, food, decorations, invitations, etc. Now you can say “Oh, I won’t spend that much on MY wedding;” however, did you know that accordingly to the BBB, nearly 75 per cent of brides say they spent more on their wedding than they originally budgeted? So whether you’re currently planning a wedding or you think it may be in your future, it’s time to start saving those pennies and letting them work for you while you make your future wedding plans.
And what generally follows getting married that costs even more money, perhaps buying a house and having kids? Well, read on.
Milestone #2: Buying a House
Whether you’re buying a house with a partner or on your own, it’s a big decision. Purchasing a home or a piece of property is generally the single largest expense in most people’s lives; therefore, it’s not a decision that’s made on a whim. According to the Canadian Real Estate Association, the average home price in Calgary in February 2019 was $461,092, slowly increasing year by year with inflation and the ever-fluctuating housing market. Since this home purchase would be below $500,000, your required down payment is 5 per cent; however, if your home purchase is between $500,000 – $1,000,000, your down payment rises to 10 per cent. This is already a large chunk of money that you will need to pay upfront, let alone decide on a mortgage rate, amortization period and payment frequency.
However, in the end, you’ll own your very own home in the city to use and decorate as you please! If you want to be Calgary’s next homeowner, it’s time to start planning for your future now.
Milestone #3: Having Kids
And last, but certainly not least: having kids. People often underestimate how much having a child, let alone multiple, will really cost. Before you actually have your child, you will pay for things like maternity clothes, nursing bras, a crib, prenatal care, decorating your nursery, car seats, etc. Then once you have your child, the spending doesn’t stop. You will continue to pay for things like food, diapers, clothes, then bigger clothes followed by more food – the list goes on! But in the end, you will have a beautiful family that you love and support for years to come.
Now if we’ve started to overwhelm you, stop right there. Yes, these milestones are expensive, but they’re do-able. All you need to do is make a plan and stick to it. ATB Prosper – ATB’s digital investment experience – is the simplest way to invest your money, as it helps you create a personalized portfolio that takes into consideration your own life milestones based on your own timelines. Whether you’re saving for the milestones mentioned above or perhaps for your future education or a dream vacation, why shouldn’t your money be making even more money while you’re not using it? It just makes sense.
To help get you started, we’ve teamed up with ATB Prosper to give away $200 for you to invest in your very own investment savings account. Spot the ATB contest on our Instagram Feed with more details on how you can win:
- Must be over 18 years old.
- Not employed by ATB.
- Four entries per account.
- Lives in Alberta.
- Tag a friend in the comments.
Kelsey is the Editorial & Events Manager for Date Night. Monday-Friday she works as an independent Marketing & Communications Contractor, providing writing, editing and digital marketing services for small businesses here in YYC. When she’s not busy writing about our city, you can usually find her trying the newest fitness studio, exploring the Rockies or chasing the sun – whether here in AB or halfway across the world.