The moment you find out your child has been accepted to their college of choice is a proud moment for any parent. But the one thing that could make you even prouder is being in a financial position that can support your child’s college education.
Saving for college is often ignored until it’s too late. There are many ways to pay for college, but putting away money over the course of your son or daughter’s childhood can be a very rewarding experience for you as a parent.
Weighing Your Options
Opening a savings account dedicated solely to funding your child’s education is one strategy to take when saving for college. If you have contributed to a savings account for your child’s college education, then you know the advantages of time and interest. This is one of the most basic strategies to take when saving for college. There are also tax benefits for a higher education. These options may include pulling from a retirement fund (penalties do not apply in some instances), specific tax deductions or even opportunities through tax credits. Your tax professional can give insight into which option best fits your individual need.
A Life Investment
Paying for a college education is often viewed as an expense when it should be viewed as an investment. In 2009, data from the U.S. Census Bureau said the average male college graduate earned 85% more than the average male who only finished high school or had obtained a General Education Development Certificate (GED). Among women, college graduates earned 111% more than non-graduates. So it is important to understand that what you "invest" in today will likely yield a positive return. Yet no matter how you look at it, you must still ask yourself the question of how you will be able to pay for that investment.
Choosing Between Retirement & College
If you have not been saving for college then you are often left with some difficult decisions. The financial resources must come from somewhere and many times the decision is made to pull from a retirement account. Seek out advisory services that can help you make the proper financial decision. There may be financial considerations, such as certain tax benefits, you haven’t thought of that can help you as you look to make the right decision for your family. If you are faced with a "retirement vs. college" scenario, contact us today and let the professionals at BatesCarter help.
Professional Consulting Services So what is your next step? At BatesCarter, we have a team of professionals that offer traditional accounting, tax and advisory services. We can help prepare you today for financial responsibilities that will occur in the future. Because we know that the financial decisions you make today will shape your future. For that reason, we are dedicated to doing our very best for you every day. As trusted advisors we know that you rely on us for timely, relevant guidance.