I want to give money to relative's children so that they can use it when they're older. How best to do this?
Some of my relatives are having kids, and I'd like to give the kids money. (I'm in the USA.) The oldest of the kids is 5; the youngest (so far) is -3 mos.
The parents all have 529 plans for the kids, but I'd rather not put the money there as 529's are limited to college/educational expenses. I want the kid to be able to spend the money on a shitbox car when they turn 17 or to be able to hike the AT the summer after high school or to buy expensive tools and a worktruck if they eschew college and go into the trades. And have the money in the kid's name, so they can decide for themselves how to use it.
Savings bonds are traditional (and what I've given in the past) but not necessarily as profitable as other financial instruments, and in the case of the oldest child, he'd mature before any new bonds. Are there other bearer instruments? Would non-bearer instruments be done as a UGMA? Should I just buy it in the child's name? How does this all work?
I assume that setting up some kind of "Fund RMD's extended family" trust fund would be excessive for the amounts of money we're talking (several hundred $$ per year per kid), but maybe not?
There have been other questions
about investing for kids, but it looks like it's mostly asked by people who are parents rather than great-aunts. Thanks, hive mind!
When they're old enough, I would, of course, buy mefi memberships for them as an investment in AWESOME.