Saving For College
College is expensive. We can help you be ready when the time comes to send your kids off to school.
College tuition goes up almost every year. This year alone it rose 8.3%, or $5,189 over the past year, on an average. On average, tuition at a private university is $27,293 per year. Since most people don't have the money to pay for tuition out of their pockets, we're here to help you save.
Saving Money for College Through a 529 Plan
Going to college in the United States can be an expensive venture, but at least the Congress has given a variety of ways to save and pay for higher education through tax advantages. One of these programs is the qualified tuition plan, also known as the "529 plan."
A 529 Plan is a tax-advantaged investment savings account to save for higher education expenses. It is run either by the state or by any college/ university. An "owner" creates an account, deposits cash in it, and designates a beneficiary. The plan invests the money in the account and its earnings and growth are not subject to federal income tax until the beneficiary reaches college age.
Once the beneficiary reaches college age, the funds are generally used to pay for their higher education at any college or university, regardless of the state that sponsors the plan. While the amounts withdrawn for educational expenses of the beneficiary are not subject to income tax, any other use of the amount are subject to tax.
To set up a 529 Plan, a donor (whether it is a parent, grandparent, or any other person) may establish an account by contributing cash to the plan and designating a beneficiary of the account. Most states even allow non-residents to create 529 Plan accounts. While there is no limit to the amount of annual contributions to the 529 Plan account, each state sets a total contribution limit based on the average cost of that state's attending college.
For more in-depth information about the 529 Plan, consult with a tax or financial adviser.
How Can Members First Help?
College Savings & Student Budget Calculators - Our calculators can help you to develop an education savings plan.
- College Savings Calculator - Saving for your children's education requires a long-term plan. And,
like saving for retirement, the earlier you start your plan the better.
Use this calculator to help develop or fine-tune your education savings
- Student Budget - Use this calculator to help analyze your budget as a full-time student.
This calculator is specifically designed to help students understand
their expenses and income while attending a university, college or other
full-time educational institution.
Members First Memorial Scholarship Program - We created the Memorial Scholarship Program to aid our members in furthering their education. Each year we award several scholarships to deserving students.
Student Loans - After exhausting federal funding resources, our Student Choice Private Lending Solution can provide the additional funds you need.
NH Jump$tart Coalition - The NH affiliate of the National Jump$tart Coalition is committed to improving the financial literacy of America's youth.
Financial Aid 101: How to Pay for College - What are the Costs and Common Misperceptions? An article by Karen Wolf, John Wiley & Sons, Inc. found on education.com
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