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The Cost Of A College Education

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The costs of a college education continue to rise like a hot air balloon and many fear that they will soon be beyond their reach. Some experts have estimated that the cost of an average four year program at a public college or university may cost as much as $100, 000.00 in fifteen years from now. That's a lot of money, regardless of your current income.

The good news is that you can play now to avoid that super-hit later on. You may not be able to control the costs of a college education, but you can find ways to lesson that blow. One way is through a 529 college education savings plan and even if your child does not decide to go to university later on you can roll it over to someone else in the family who does.

A 529 plan is named after its section number in the IRS code is a savings plan for college education and when you open an account you have a number of options to choose from.

Those options include prepaying tuition at a qualified educational institution at today's tuition rates or you can save money in a tax-deferred account that can only be used to pay for education at future tuition rates.

529 accounts work because either your investment earnings will grow to meet the higher costs of future education or you will have already prepaid for your child's college education. Most people favor the savings account option because they feel that is most attractive but it really depends on your individual finances and your risk tolerance.

A 529 plan is a state-sponsored investment program. That means that your state sets up the plan with an asset management company and you open a 529 account with that asset management company that must live with the state's desired plan features. You still own the account and you designate a child as the beneficiary of that account. All of your dealings will be directly with the asset management company that has been designated to manage the 529 plan for your state.

Depending on the state you live in there will be variances in some of the procedures that you have to follow and conditions on the asset management companies investment strategies. Most plans are very similar but there are no restrictions on which state you choose to invest in so it may be worth your while to check around.

Whatever plan or option you choose a 529 plan will help relieve your worries about how you will ever pay for your child's college education.
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This article provided courtesy of http://www.university-phoenix.com

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