Financial Responsibility

Our financial goals are often in tension with one another. Balancing saving for college and retirement is a common one.

Our instincts as parents are to provide for our children. It’s not a mystery why many people focus on saving for college.

On the flip side, retirement is something that cannot be financed by loans, scholarships, or paid out of existing income.

The biggest mistakes happen when we ignore one to focus solely on the other. We can either end up with most of our savings in vehicles meant for one goal and we end up with not enough accessible for the other.

There is a balance. Most people have this intuition. Missing is the knowledge of how to strike a balance.

We end up going with our gut. We’re looking to satisfy a desire: to feel confident that something is “taken care of” or “on the right track.” But we end up making emotional decisions without accurate view of the trade-offs.

Typically, it’s a good idea to make sure you’re on track to meet your retirement goals before devoting funds to college.

Instead of using accounts that are specifically for college or retirement, you can set up accounts that have more flexibility of use before retirement age. This gives you the ability to use it for college or defer it to retirement without facing penalties.

The tension of college vs. retirement is an example of how we make financial decisions in silos. We think of things in terms of checking boxes. Mentally we see these different items as being taken care of. What is missing is a way to see how all our decisions work together and impact each other.


We have a new tool that allows for a consolidated view of your accounts and way to link outside banking and investment accounts. You can request access now.

Andrew Eppes, RICP®

Andrew Eppes is a registered representative of and offers securities and investment advisory services through MML Investors Services, LLC. Member SIPC. Nexus Advisors, LLC is not a subsidiary or affiliate of MML Investors Services, LLC, or its affiliated companies. 14241 Dallas Parkway Suite 1200 Dallas, TX 75254 972-348-6300.

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