Category Archives: Family

How to Help Grandkids Pay for College

From Rick Kahler

One financial goal held by many of my clients is to help pay for their grandkids’ education. This generosity can foster gratitude and family closeness. Unfortunately, it can also foster resentment and family misunderstandings. Here are some suggestions for helping with grandchildren’s college expenses in positive and supportive ways:

1. Be fair. This doesn’t necessarily mean giving each child the same amount down to the penny. It’s perfectly fine to consider factors like various family’s incomes or kids’ different abilities and career goals. One possibility might be to define “fairness” as helping grandkids to be on a reasonably equal financial footing when they graduate. Continue reading

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The Risks of Being in Business with Family

Every now and then I get a call from a client wanting my opinion about starting a business with a friend, investing money in a business owned by a family member, or co-signing a loan to help a family member buy a business. Being in business with family is something I know a little bit about, having been in partnership with my father and brother for 40 years. Going into business with family members or close friends can carry a high degree of risk, both financially and emotionally.

In part this is because it is uncomfortable or difficult to ask the necessary dollars-and-cents questions. We don’t want to seem uncaring, unsupportive, or untrusting. We are concerned about damaging the relationship. Yet the relationship is far more likely to suffer if we don’t ask those questions and the venture fails.

The following are some things to consider before you invest or go into business with someone close to you:

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