If you have kids, you probably worry about how you will afford to send them to college. With a college education currently averaging about $22,500.00 per year, finding enough dough in the budget to set aside a piece of change to help finance your child’s future involves more than just basic math.
Even if you are lucky enough to have a child that can earn scholarship money, you should plan to contribute a significant amount of your own savings toward the college budget. Some estimates of financing a total four-year college education, and by total we mean the cost of tuition, books, food, room and board, etc., run as high as $200,000. With this in mind, you’d be wise to begin adding to the college piggy bank as early as possible.
What exactly is the best way for the average parent to put together enough pennies to add up to a college degree? Even if you are not able to finance the entire four years, any help you can give your college-bound child will result in a smaller post-college repayment bill. Don’t sacrifice your retirement fund however. Just contribute what you realistically can and let Junior worry about the rest.
So, think about your options. Socking away even $100.00 a month can yield up to $50,000.00 by the time your child reaches the halls of knowledge. Many people find that stocks and mutual funds are a best bet for college-bound investing and others swear by 529 savings plans. Your college savings route will likely depend on how much of your own personal budget you can reasonably contribute to the cause. Whichever route you choose, rest assured that there are many tax breaks to help you manage those tuition bills and student loan repayment plans are now more flexible than ever.