Is a college education in your child’s future? If you answered yes, it’s never too early or too late to start saving for college, especially with the average cost of tuition in Illinois coming in around $17,000 annually. And unfortunately, that’s not including room and board, let alone text books. Check out these 4 smart tips to help save for college:
Saving for College Tip No. 1:
Whether college funds are needed in 18 years or 18 months, meet with a financial advisor. They’ll personally help you create a savings plan and determine how best to invest your money to meet your family’s needs.
Saving for College Tip No. 2:
Open a Special Savings Account with the Credit Union to deposit birthday, holiday and special occasion checks into. You can set aside even more money by having money automatically withdrawn from your account and deposited into your child’s account with free Cross Account Access. Just set it and forget it. Plus it’s a great way to transfer funds while they are away at school.
Saving for College Tip No. 3:
Create a savings plan with your teen before they start their first job. Whether they’re working at a local coffee shop, babysitting, or caddying at the local golf course encourage them to save for college by setting aside a percentage of their paycheck for college costs.
Saving for College Tip No. 4:
Its never too early to start researching scholarship and grant opportunities, as well as checking out actual tuition costs at universities your child is interested in applying to.
You might also discover you can cut college costs by encouraging your child to take general education classes at a community college or studying at a school out of state (which may be less expensive).
Books, meals, dorm room expenses, tickets to the big game and club fees can add up quickly. Encourage friends and family to gift Visa® Gift Cards to your college coed to help get them started with their daily college expenses- because many times life lessons are learned outside the classroom.