529: College Savings Plans! Some quick facts about costs and savings!

In recognition of 529 Day – May 29th – we’re sharing some quick facts about higher education costs and saving for college. Edvest and Tomorrow’s Scholar are Wisconsin’s official 529 College Savings Plans. (Get it? 5/29?) http://529.wi.gov/ Yet, you can also save for higher education using a savings account, U.S. Savings Bond, or anywhere you can stash some cash.  Learn more at http://fyi.uwex.edu/collegesavings

On to the facts!

-Compared to children with no college savings, those with a small amount set aside just for college ($1-$500) are 3 times more likely to attend college, 4 times more likely to graduate from college, plus they do better in High School.

-Most parents and children can’t save the full amount needed for their child’s education. Combining more than 1 source of funds (including scholarships, student and parent borrowing, and savings from both parents and students) works best.

-Many families are concerned that college savings will reduce the amount of grants available. When it comes to financial aid, income is almost always a bigger factor than having some money saved for college. To estimate your out-of-pocket college costs, check out: fafsa.gov or finaid.org.

-529 Plans are for tuition and more. yes, you can use 529 funds for tuition. You can also use the funds for qualified education expense such as room and board, books, computers/tablets and Internet access, and more.

Ready to celebrate 529 Day? Open or contribute to a college savings account for a special person in your life. Or get more details at http://fyi.uwex.edu/collegesavings.