Saving For College the Easy Way #TakeSimpleSteps

Thank you to Country Financial for sponsoring this conversation. All opinions are my own.


These days the price of everything is on the rise from a gallon of gas to groceries and the cost of college for our kids is no exception. Like most parents, I want to give my children every opportunity possible, including college, but with it becoming harder and harder to save for everyday things, how do we begin to save for our children’s college education?

The biggest tip: START EARLY!!

As the saying goes, “every little bit counts” so any little amount can surprisingly add up to big savings. My bank has a wonderful little program called the Keep the Change savings program. My bank rounds my everyday purchases using my bank debit card to the nearest dollar amount and then transfers the difference to my savings account. Honestly I don’t even pay much attention to that spare change but realize how much it adds up at the end of the year. Check to see if your bank has a program like this or it can be as simple as starting with a change jar, at the end of the day empty your pockets and watch the savings.
Another option, much like our contributions to our 401Ks or IRAs, come up with a set amount to have automatically deposited into an online savings account every pay check. Even if its only $5, consistently putting it in adds up.
If you didn’t get the jump on an early start there are still ways you can help save on costs. Tax refunds! Take a portion every year and put it in your savings. I know many who like to use those refunds on “fun” items and vacations, but skipping every other year or not taking as big a vacation can really add up.

Now here’s another big one: The importance of teaching our children about work ethic and good grades!

Instilling in them early about getting good grades can pay off big in the form of scholarships and grants. The investment in that is simply your time. Time to sit down with them nightly to go over homework together and being involved and encouraging them to do their studies. This one was huge for me! My mother was a single parent of 3 and she always made sure we knew the importance of our school work. And as a single parent she wasn’t able to save for us so we had to go to other avenues to pay for school. Because of my hard work in school and my good grades I was able to take college weighted classes in high school for free that transferred to the college I wanted to go to, which took a year off my tuition….a year!! That’s a significant savings. Add to that the scholarships and grants I was able to apply for and it certainly helped me out a lot since I was on my own to pay for my higher education.
Whether we can start early or we are at a different starting point, these are only a few ways we can help save for our children’s college.
Paying for college can be easy if planning and saving is started early. Tuition costs are on the rise, think about inflation in 10+ years! For information on ways to save for college, check out Country Financial’s educational funding options.

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