Like any financial goal, planning in advance for the cost of higher education is key. 

  • Families need to feel confident their student is getting the right academic experience at the right cost.
  • The appropriate funding strategy can differ widely depending on both student academics and family finances.
  • Parents and grandparents alike have many options to assess when determining how to pay for college and higher education. 

As the costs of undergraduate and post-graduate education continue to rise, families are tasked with finding financial resources to pay for their children’s education.  Grandparents are also recognizing this financial challenge and are creating plans to help their grandchildren achieve this goal. For both parents and grandparents wishing to contribute, the college planning process can be difficult to navigate.  There are many questions to ask determining how to pay for college and higher education:  What is the best savings vehicle?  Will this savings impact the student’s financial aid eligibility? Can I fund college with gifts I make to my children or grandchildren in trust or outright? Can a grandparent pay tuition directly to a college? What if the student receives a scholarship? What if the child does not attend college?

It often takes an education just to plan for higher education, and stakeholders need to feel confident that their student is getting the right academic experience at the right cost.  After all, the investment in a college education can be one of the largest a family will make next to the purchase of a family home.  Knowing how to pay for college, and identifying all that is available from application to graduation and beyond, can be difficult when there is so much information to process. 

Please see important disclosures at the end of the article.

 

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