If higher education is in your or your child's future, you're likely concerned about the hefty price tag that comes along with it. Additionally, tuition isn't the only thing you need to account for: textbooks, parking passes, meal plans and any dorm fees will also need to be resolved - or, any of the funds left over following scholarships and grants,
If you're ready to start saving, check out our 3 steps on how to effectively save for college.
1. Select Your Place of Study
First and foremost, it's important to do your research on which college or university is best for you or your child. This will help you to determine exactly how much you need to save. Different colleges and universities have different tuition rates, fees, and more, so be sure when you're looking over majors and programs to price-compare, as well. It's also important to look into university-provided scholarships: what's offered, how to apply, and any deadlines. The more scholarships and grants you can get, the less you must cover out of pocket.
It's also worth mentioning that this process might make you realize that higher education is not right for you - and that's okay! If this is the case, look into trade or vocational schools next, or simply find ways to jump right into the workforce.
2. When to Start
You've likely heard it before… the sooner the better! The sooner you start to save for college for your child or yourself, the more time your money will have to grow and the more you'll be able to put away. Even if your child is still a toddler and you have no idea whether they will want to go to school, it can be helpful to start setting money aside. Even if that money doesn't end up funding a college education, it will set them up for success once they begin their adult lives.
3. Where to Put The Savings
When saving for college, you can - of course - deposit your savings into a basic savings account. However, you might want to consider a Coverdell Education Savings Account or a 529 plan. Which option is the best choice for you depends on your income, age - or age of your children - and a number of other factors. Learn more via Georgia Futures.
To learn more about how to save for college and how to get the most out of the options available, contact Coosa Valley Credit Union today.