Saving for postsecondary education, 2020

Release date: September 24, 2020
Infographic: Saving for postsecondary education, 2020
Description: Saving for postsecondary education, 2020

Saving for postsecondary education, 2020

From February 4 to June 20, 2020, Statistics Canada conducted the Survey of Approaches to Educational Planning (SAEP) to understand how parents and guardiansNote 1 of children aged 0 to 17 were planning for their academic future after high school.

69% of children have savings set aside for their postsecondary studies

Percentage of children with savings set aside for postsecondary studies, by region
Table summary
This table displays the results of Percentage of children with savings set aside for postsecondary studies. The information is grouped by Region (appearing as row headers), Percentage (appearing as column headers).
Region Percentage
British Columbia 74%
Prairies 68%
Ontario 71%
Quebec 66%
Atlantic 62%

Most common methods used to save for children’s postsecondary studiesNote 2
Table summary
This table displays the results of Most common methods used to save for children’s postsecondary studies. The information is grouped by Savings method (appearing as row headers), Percentage (appearing as column headers).
Savings method Percentage
Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) 85%
Bank account in the name of the child or in-trust account 31%
Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA) 16%

Average RESP value at the end of 2019: $14,520

31% of children did not have savings set aside for postsecondary studies


Top reasons why children’s parents and guardians did not save
Table summary
This table displays the results of Top reasons why children’s parents and guardians did not save. The information is grouped by Reason (appearing as row headers), Percentage (appearing as column headers).
Reason Percentage
Don’t have enough money 54%
Will pay when the time comes 40%
Have other priorities 28%
Child will pay when the time comes 24%

48% of children’s parents and guardians who were not saving said that they would save later.


Parents and guardians will help with the costs of postsecondary education in other ways than through savings
Table summary
This table displays the results of Parents and guardians will help with the costs of postsecondary education in other ways than through savings. The information is grouped by Other way (appearing as row headers), Percentage (appearing as column headers).
Other way Percentage
Paying when the time comes 76%
Providing free room and board at home or use of a car 71%
Repaying some or all of a student loan 32%
Helping in other ways, such as paying for supplies, books, expenses, bills, etc. 7%

Source: 2020 Survey of Approaches to Educational Planning.

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