November 22nd, 2010
There’s no time like the present to start preparing for what will soon be an eventuality; and there’s no better way to do it than to tap into some resources that will guide you along the way as painlessly as possible. If you’ve been laying awake at night worrying about tuition, why not take one of the following books to bed instead:
- Education Planning: Taxes, Trusts, and Techniques (Nancy Shurtz) is described as being an invaluable, in-depth resource for the estate and tax planning strategies and vehicles available for families saving for higher education. While focusing on all aspects of the popular 529 plans, the author also provides information on all other savings options, including 529 prepaid plans, Coverdell Educational Savings Accounts, qualified savings bonds, UGMAs/UTMAs, trusts, insurance, financial aid, grants, scholarships, and loans. It compares and contrasts techniques and applies them to different income groups. Also includes numerous planning tips, charts, and examples.
- The Best Ways to Save for College : A Comprehensive Guide to State-Sponsored College Savings Plans and Prepaid Tuition Contracts (Joseph F. Hurley) may be the source for you if you’re trying to understand how 529 plans work: the tax rules, planning strategies, impact on college financial aid. The author compares them to other alternatives such as the Education IRA, savings bonds, and mutual funds and he describes the best and worst features of each state’s plan, along with an exclusive rating system which will guide you to the ones to use and the ones to stay away from since they are definitely not all created equal!
- 529 and Other College Savings Plans for Dummies (Margaret A. Munro) may be a “for dummies” book, but you’ll be the “dumb one” if you don’t access the information it contains which is inclusive of up-to-the-minute details on the plans in clearly written explanations including a tear-out cheat sheet and top ten lists. And, since this topic is also commonly considered stressful, you’ll definitely appreciate the dash of humor and fun that’s thrown in to function as a sanity check!
These are great starting points along your journey, so we hope you’ll consider them as reading material so you can be well-armed with knowledge when it comes to the soon-to-be inevitable tuition battles!