College – we all hope our kids want to continue their education beyond high school but it can be very expensive and it is easier to start saving when they are little – let compound interest work for you and let that money ride….

But setting up a 529 Plan is only the beginning – you don’t want to make mistakes and assume things or you might end up with a mess.

1) Don’t assume that 529 plan is your states only option. Many states have other options for you. There is something called a pre-paid plan and is only open to residents in some states. But these are sometimes restrictive and don’t leave many options – what is the kids go out of state?

2) There are a couple different companies that I work with that offer 529 plans – it mainly concerns what type of investments are inside that fund to use… Conventional 529 plans are very flexible and money saved in these can be used for educational purposes for a specific child or given to another child and can be used at essentially any US college

3) Start early… don’t have to save it all up yourself if you start early… a little money put away for a long period of time – invested wisely will grow big and strong and help you and your family on a new track.

4) You can always roll over your old 529 plan into a new one if needed. Changes happen and we are ready for it.

5) Don’t withdraw the money too soon – you need to wait until the expenses come due – if you withdraw a year ahead you will be forced to pay penalty and a tax on the money.

Debbie Lewis