How I Did It
He saved, he sacrificed, he sent all three daughters to expensive private schools and college. Way to go, Dad
By Donna Rosato

(MONEY Magazine) – " My wife and I came from families that believed in education and helped us pay for college, but the cost was modest back then. I've run my own furniture store for 30 years. Marietta is a public high school teacher. When our oldest daughter was approaching ninth grade, we began looking at private schools. We always wanted to give each daughter the opportunity to develop as a total person. That wasn't happening in a small-town school. At a private school, the teachers don't disappear at lunch or after school, and my daughters got into better colleges than they would have otherwise. I worried about how we would pay for it--in our best years, our combined income was $150,000. The one year all three were in private school, it cost us $60,000. When you run a business, your income fluctuates. But Marietta had steady pay and medical benefits. We applied for financial aid but we made too much money, so we paid for 95% of the tuition, room and board from income, savings and CDs. We got one $5,000 loan and never cashed in any stock investments. We lived simply. We've taken plenty of rides past fancy homes, but we're still in our starter house 30 years later. We don't have a mortgage or any credit-card debt. My wife always tells the kids, 'Your education is your inheritance.' When my youngest is finished with college, the total cost for tuition, room and board will have been $632,000 over 16 years. But it was worth the sacrifice. They've all graduated with honors so far."