Save for Retirement First, the Children’s Education Second

~~ Save for Retirement First, the Children’s Education Second  ~~

A HALF-DOZEN years ago, Brian Appelbaum’s savings plan was focused mainly on his own retirement. But now he is married and the father of two young children.

So Mr. Appelbaum, 53, has reassessed his outlook, as he and his wife try to save money for their retirement as well as for their children’s education. The couple are contributing regularly to a college fund — and are planning for Mr. Appelbaum to work longer, since the children will be college age when he is in his 60s.

“The overall package of things you have to consider at my age is different,” said Mr. Appelbaum, owner of a Scottsdale, Ariz., business that makes cutting blades for the construction industry.

Saving for retirement and a college education at the same time is a challenge for many families, but financial planners advise that if funds are limited — and for most people, they are — it is crucial to fund retirement first before contributing to an education fund.

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