Partners - with the high incomes you are bringing in, do you plan on passing on significant wealth to the next generation/ your kids?

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I have and will continue to invest in my kids’ education and am committed to exposing them to different experiences and cultures now, so (a) there ain’t gonna be that much money left, and (b) they won’t need it, being well armed with enough opportunities that any money I leave them won’t really matter.
By the way, we’re not hedge fund managers over here. Depending on where one lives and when they got into it, you may have a slightly inflated view of the wealth creation inherent in partnership at a consulting firm. It ain’t THAT much money. But I live in the nosebleed northeast.

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I’m with P1. I think you underestimate how easy it is to spend what I bring in. That said, my goal is to find 100% of the kids’ education, help with down payments on houses, and if there’s anything left after my wife dies, education for the grandkids.

I am also trying to balance with philanthropy. We try to give a good chunk of money to our universities and we give to several local charities in which we believe.

At PwC we are also forced by the firm to save a ton for retirement. We will get a pension but the firm still forces us to save a lot of money. I also have to pay for life insurance, supplemental retirement, etc. Oh, and our health insurance is astronomical.

There’s not much left, but what’s left is MINE ALL MINE.

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We have a consensus...Partner, Partner.

Same - I will pay for education and exposure to different experiences. She will have to contribute starting in high school.

I survived on canned tuna and beans in college. I will not raise an entitled brat.

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I will pay for college. However, my financial plan would likely leave several million to my son if I die before 90. However, I don’t want him to be entitled so there will be stipulations on that money in my will.

I have stipulations right now that if my husband or I were to pass away while he is young, he gets some money after he graduates undergrad (or finishes 4 years in the military), some when he is 30 and some at 35

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No. I will find undergraduate school fully, but kid is on his own for graduate school.

I plan to use my wealth to start good behaviors early (1:1 match on 401k savings for first 10 years, 1:1 match on 529 contributions for first five years of each child, etc.). I also plan to hand over control of the Donor Advised Fund my wife and I funded at a community foundation so I can teach him about philanthropy.

The only money I plan to leave is a maintenance fund for the lake house so his family can enjoy it like we have without needing to worry about upkeep, taxes, etc.

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Unlike my brethren at the other big four who have fully funded pension plans from their consulting spin offs in the early 2000s, this is not the case at Deloitte. So our pension is not as generous and not guaranteed. So saving for retirement is paramount. Moreover, mandatory equity Partner retirement age is 62 so you lose 3 years where you are likely earning you highest income. Like the other Partners in this post, our children’s education is very important to us and we see it as an investment in their future. So we will fully fund their education including private school and University.

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Grew up in a modest middle-class neighborhood and went to public school through middle school. Then went to an elite private school for high school. Currently live in a wealthy suburb in one of the best school districts in the state and in the zone of the best elementary school in that district. I send my kid to private school now and will for high school (I hope - harder to get into some of these northeast prep schools than Stanford). Why? First , unlike public schools, they don’t teach to the test. Our school employs cutting edge educational approaches and has strong connections with the top Ed School Universities in the area. They spend more on teacher training than we do at our firm. Second, student teacher ratios. My kid gets phenomenal attention and we get tremendous feedback on her progress and performance. Third, we are actively engaged at the school in a way that you simply wouldn’t be in public. My wife (former consultant) was part of the board committee that helped develop the strategic plan with the incoming Head of School. Fourth, like minded parents. The parents at our school are all about maximizing the capabilities of the school to the benefit of the kids, and are equally focused on the criticality of this foundational time in our kids’ development (sometimes to a psychotic level, but different discussion). This they dig deep in their pockets if there is a program, physical plant improvement or resource requirement that benefits the kids. And many of these families have very deep pockets. Fifth, on that, the deep endowment of the school allows it to be much more both racially and economically diverse than my local high school, which overflows with blond Stepford kids. That is important to me given the world these kids will inherit. But by far most importantly, it’s the other kids. Public school kids go to the schools in their neighborhoods because, well that’s what you do. Private school kids are there because they want to be there. And yes, you can say that it’s because their parents want them to be there, but my kid runs out of the car with nary a “bye Dad” at drop off, and would give me hell if I tried to move her. The kids love school and the school fosters a love of learning which is what the parents require of the administration.
Now is it perfect? Of course not. Are these generalizations,? Of course. No place is free of bullying, mean girls and bad behaviors, but at Our school and my high school, what I’ve said is very much characteristic of the places. There ain’t no guarantee that it will lead to a better life for your kid, but I’ll put my chips in wherever the odds are better for my kid. To my own detriment. Could send her to our highly reputed public school and have an awesome lake house and even more in the bank, but improving my kids’ odds is my responsibility as a parent. End of sermon. Don’t expect everyone to feel the same.

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I really want to be a partner right now just to join this consultant’s version of Spies Like Us

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Tell it, brother. A couple of non-profit boards and enough fundraisers of those causes your friends support and force you to come to, and all of a sudden you’re close to doubling private school fees (see: investing in education) pretty quick. Which is a big out of pocket number. No complaints, as it’s well-spent, but it goes pretty quick

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WM1, PwC generally forces you to save well into six figures. Not counting 401(k) and match, and you self fund your match.

On one hand it is good because it forces disciple. On the other hand, it’s annoying when you have a big purchase or expense

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P1 I agree completely with your points. Thx for that deep dive

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Goood question. Are your kids setup to the annoying trust fund kids u meet all over NYC? Or very least, does partnership pay that well? These other kids’ parents bring in millions upon millions, so I’m not sure it’s even comparable.

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Love these thoughtful responses, and the thoughtful parents who wrote them. Great to see the partnership hasn't shifted your values.

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By the way, yes it is a stretch if by stretch you mean being a lot more comfortable financially/mentally if we didn’t do it. It ain’t fun to light the equivalent of $65k pre-tax on Fire, but it’s my obligation. In my view.

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I can appreciate the thought, but i can’t help but wonder on the value. I think it’s about the parents and the people the kids surround themselves more than anything. I know ppl who went to Harvard out of undergrad and the other started off in community college who later transferred to a state school...both went to Ivy League MBA and ended up making the same money and the same jobs (ibanking). I went to cc then state school and am in a better position than some others simply bc of the field I chose to study. In the long term I think it’s a scam. Call me cynical, but what the person studies over where they study lays the cards for their future. I am a bitter 2008 grad, but I don’t know, when I hear about the cost of these schools, I can’t help but have my skepticism. Nothing wrong with what you’re doing, tho. Your values are obviously in the right place.

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Totally reasonable to wonder about the value. It’s not unlike buying a house, right? You buy the most house you can afford in the best neighborhood you can find, generally. Often stretch to get into it assuming it’s a good investment and that you will increase your income to ease the pain a bit. Generally speaking that’s a place that will appreciate more and take less of a hit in the downdrafts. Is it a guarantee that you’ll not take a bath on it? Nope. But you do what you do and hope you were right. If the kids who went to community college could have afforded to go to Stanford, wouldn’t they have done it? It’s the same calculus. Not all kids who go to Exeter end up CEOs and not all community college kids end up with three jobs. No one is saying that, let me be clear. Just saying if you can, then you do.

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It’s not, M1.

What’s “a ton” in percent or dollars pretax

Funding my kids retirement like the other partners said but I’m expecting to be able to live on my pension (if it’s there) and preserve my other retirement funds as long as possible. If the pension is there, I will wait for minimum distributions to kick in and then fund a trust for the mountain and lake houses for my kids and their families and then transfer as much of the remainder as I can into a trust for them. Won’t be tens of millions but should be a substantial start for them. As a side note, we’ve already started the process through some creative estate planning to take advantage of time. #DB

Do all big4 partnerships have the same comp packages?

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