Children holding Thank You signs

Save for their future with an RESP

They’ll thank you for it

You want to help your kids achieve their dreams.
An RESP can help make that happen. Let’s get started!

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What is an RESP anyway?

A Registered Education Savings Plan or RESP is an easy way of saving for college, university, trade school or CEGEP. When you open an RESP you put the money into a variety of investments. Then you:

  1. Don't pay any tax on returns while your funds are in the RESP.
  2. Can take advantage of federal government grants up to a lifetime maximum of $7,200 per child, plus, depending on income eligibility, other bonds may be available.
  3. Take even more advantage of provincial incentives if you live in Quebec, Saskatchewan or British Columbia.
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How does it work?

First, you open an RESP at any Scotiabank branch. Then you choose how you'd like to invest your money. If you're not sure, we can help you select the best investment for you. Then we'll review which government incentives you can apply for on behalf of your child, based on qualifications. We'll automatically add that grant money to the RESP account when it’s received.

Your RESP will grow over time. And when your child starts college or university, you can withdraw the money you need to help pay for school.

What investments can an RESP hold?

Once you open an RESP you can hold a variety of investments in it: high-interest savings accounts, GICs, or mutual funds*. If you’re not sure what to invest in, we can help you pick an investment that’s right for your unique financial situation and your child’s future.

What if I can't afford an RESP?

In partnership with the community organization SmartSAVER, we're working to help Canadian families learn about and access the Canada Learning Bond through RESPs. The Canada Learning Bond is offered by the federal government to families that receive the National Child Benefit Supplement. You could get up to $2,000 for your child's RESP without putting in your own money. So even if you think you can't afford an RESP, come and talk to us.

Tools

RESP Reality Check

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Money Finder Calculator

Explore your current spending habits, to find areas where you can save more.

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Pay Yourself First Tool

See how easy it is to reach your savings goals through regular and automatic savings.

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6 Great reasons to open an RESP

We all want to do what’s best for our kids. An RESP can help you give your kids the assistance they need to realize their dreams.

Take advantage of powerful government incentives

This is a big reason that people open an RESP. The Canadian government has a number of grants that put more money into your kid's RESP. You just apply for the grant or bond once and, if your child meets the eligibility requirements, the money is deposited automatically into the RESP.

  • Canada Education Savings Grant (CESG)
    Every time you put money into an RESP, and your child meets other eligibility requirements, the Canadian government will add 20% of what you contribute up to $500 per year. The maximum lifetime CESG any beneficiary may receive across all RESPs is $7,200.
  • Canada Learning Bond (CLB)
    You could get $500 for your kid's RESP if your child is born on or after January 2004 and they meet other eligibility requirements. For each subsequent year your child is eligible, they will receive $100 per year. The maximum lifetime CLB a beneficiary may receive across all RESPs is $2,500.
  • Saskatchewan Advantage Grant for Education (SAGES)
    Does your child live in Saskatchewan? Then every year you invest in their RESP and your child meets other eligibility requirements, the government will kick in 10% of what you contribute up to $250 per year. The maximum lifetime SAGES a beneficiary may receive across all RESPs is $4,500. SAGES has been suspended effective January 1, 2018, by the Government of Saskatchewan. For more details visit their website .
  • Quebec Education Savings Incentive (QESI)
    The government will kick in 10% of what you contribute up to $250 per year if your child lives in Quebec and meets other eligibility requirements. The maximum lifetime QESI a beneficiary may receive across all RESPs is $3,600.
  • British Columbia Training & Education Savings Grant (BCTESG)
    The government will kick in a one-time grant of $1,200 if your child was born in 2007 or after and meets other eligibility requirements.
Your RESP grows tax free

This is another great benefit. While your money is in the RESP, you don’t pay tax on the interest, dividends or capital gains that you earn. So when your kids go to college or university, you’ll have more money to give them.

You have flexibility

If your child decides not to pursue post-secondary education, you have a few choices. If you have a family plan you can use the funds for the other beneficiaries. If you have an individual plan you may be able to transfer it to the beneficiary’s sibling’s plan.

You may also withdraw all of the money that you invested; however, you’ll lose the government grants. You have a few choices regarding the investment returns earned by the RESP:

  1. You may be able to transfer up to $50,000 into your RRSP;
  2. If a beneficiary of the RESP is also the beneficiary of a Registered Disability Savings Plan (RDSP), you may be able to transfer it to the RDSP; or
  3. You may be able to withdraw it, but it will be subject to withholding and penalty taxes at source.
Withdraw funds when needed

Once you have your child’s proof of enrolment in college or university, you can start to withdraw the money they need. Grants and investment returns will be taxed at your children's tax rate.

If they enrolled in school full-time, you can withdraw $5,000 in grants and investment returns in the first 13 weeks of school. If your child needs more money after that, you can take out more funds.

If your child is enrolled in school part time, you can withdraw $2,500 in grants and investment returns for every 13-week period that they are in school.

Use the money on anything your child needs for school

There are no restrictions on how the money is spent as long as it is in direct furtherance of their post-secondary education. You can use the funds for tuition, books, computers, transportation, or housing.

Anyone can invest in an RESP

Is there someone else who wants to help with your child’s educational costs? Grandparents, step-parents, aunts, uncles – even friends can open an RESP. All they need is the parent’s permission and the child’s Social Insurance Number.

Make an appointment to find out more. Your kids will thank you for it.

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