Features and Advantages
If you want a private college education for your child, but are concerned about the rising cost of tuition, Private College 529 Plan may be the answer. Consider these features and advantages.
Get substantial savings
The sooner you prepay for tuition, the more you can potentially save. If tuition continues to rise by 6.5% per year,1 prepaying today would save you more than 25% in 5 years, nearly 50% in 10 years and more than 65% in 18 years. In dollars and cents, the chart shows a contribution of $10,000 today would save you more than $21,000 in tuition expenses 18 years later.
You get tomorrow's tuition at today's prices for any school in our national network of colleges and universities. Your tuition certificates retain their value for 30 years from the date of purchase when used at a participating school, no matter how much the cost of tuition rises or what happens in the financial markets.2 Since tuition is different at each participating school, a tuition certificate prepays a different amount of tuition at every school.
Private College 529 Plan does not charge entry or annual fees. All costs are covered by an annual management fee paid by member colleges and universities.
Redemptions of tuition certificates are not subject to federal taxes as long as certificates are used to pay tuition and mandatory fees.3 Residents of states that offer tax parity may also be eligible for a state tax deduction on contributions made to the Plan. Please consult a tax professional for more details. The plan also provides potential gift and estate tax benefits:
- Parents, grandparents or even friends may contribute up to $14,000 ($28,000 for married couples) per child each year, or up to $70,000 ($140,000 for married couples) prorated over a 5-year period to an account, without incurring a federal gift tax
- Contributions to 529 plans are also excluded from an account owner's estate when taxes are assessed, making the Plan an attractive option for grandparents4
Private College 529 Plan can be used at a growing list of more than 270 colleges and universities across the country. Member schools include a wide variety of choices to fit the talents and interests of every student. You are not committing to a school when you enroll in the Plan.5
New member colleges or universities must honor existing Tuition Certificates from all current account owners. Any college or university that decides to withdraw from the Plan must continue to honor all Tuition Certificates purchased during and prior to the time of that school's participation.
No eligibility restrictions
The Plan has no special eligibility requirements or income limitations. If you are an adult and a U.S. citizen, you may open an account for a beneficiary or in the name of a trust or estate. Qualified organizations can also open scholarship accounts for unnamed beneficiaries.
Freedom to use outside the Plan
What if your child doesn't attend a participating school? Your college savings won't be wasted. We offer plenty of options for you to still get the most out of your Plan contributions.2
Easy to open and manage
You may open a Private College 529 Plan account and make contributions whenever you want. It takes about 15 minutes and $25 to enroll online. You may also download and mail an enrollment application.
Additional contributions may be made at any time, or set up an automatic purchase plan with as little as $25 a month as long as a minimum of $500 is contributed within two years. Or, you may contribute up to the Plan's contribution limit of $223,525 which is high enough to cover the tuition and mandatory fees for five years at the most expensive school in the Plan.
The earlier you prepay, the greater the percentage of tuition you can lock in at today's prices.
Q: Do I have to choose a specific school when I purchase a certificate?
A: No. Tuition certificates purchased today can be used at any current or future participating school, as long as a student is accepted for admission and enrolls. Participation in the Plan does not guarantee admission to any college or university, nor does it affect the admissions process in any way.