College Planning


Baby Steps to Your Financial Future

Baby Steps to Your Financial FutureMy wife and I were recently blessed with our first child. Like most parents, we were excited to start this new chapter of our lives as a family. Accompanied by all the wonderful emotions and thoughts of being new parents were our worries about providing for our baby’s future. My wife asked how we should save for his education, knowing the current economic environment requires that parents start saving for higher education costs as soon as possible. It’s natural to feel overwhelmed by this question, because there are many options to explore. Ease those feelings by taking baby steps to your financial future.

First Things First – Create a Budget

Before you can make an informed decision about how to start saving for post high school education, however, you should go back to the basics. Start by creating a budget that includes all of your current necessities (including saving for your own retirement) and then add all the needs of your new little one (items such as diapers, formula, baby clothes, daycare and so on).

Once you have that information organized and prioritized, you can decide how much can be saved for your child’s future education. The cost of education has been steadily rising over the last several decades. According to a USA Today report, the average inflation rate for university tuition is about 6 percent, double the national average for inflation.

Explore College Saving Options

One of the best ways to combat this problem is a college savings vehicle known as a 529 plan. Contributions to a 529 are invested in mutual funds to help your money keep up with or outpace inflation; earnings grow tax-deferred and, as long as the funds are used for education costs, the withdrawals are tax-free. There are many 529 plan options, and your Perspective advisor can help you compare and choose the one best for your family.

Having a budget and making a decision on how to invest for education is sure to free up time, so you can enjoy the fleeting moments of wonder with your new bundle of love. They are only babies for a short time!

Baby Steps to Your Financial Future Bonus: This article in the resource center offers a solid overview of 529 college savings plans.

By |April 24th, 2018|College Planning, Financial Planning|

Investing in Your Grandchild’s Education

college graduate with grandmotherInvesting in your grandchild’s education is a generous gift that can have a life-long impact, especially as the cost of attending college rises every year. According to data reported in U.S. News Best Colleges rankings from 1995 to 2015, the average in-state tuition and fees at public universities grew nearly 300 percent.

You have a lot of options from which to choose. Some are more complex than others. This short video highlights some of the benefits and potential drawbacks on a few of those options.

It’s important to weigh your options thoughtfully, while also ensuring your personal financial needs are being met and that you’ll have sufficient resources in your retirement. Your financial planner can be a helpful resource and guide as you consider the best option for you and your grandchildren.

Investing in Your Grandchild’s Education


Select photos in video courtesy of Stuart Miles, dread design, cool designs, satit_srihin and adamr at

Recommended Reading Roundup

Here’s a recommended reading roundup — informative articles to help with life, from career insights to college planning to managing holiday stress.

Image by © Royalty-Free/Corbis

By |November 14th, 2014|College Planning, Current Affairs|

Americans Working with Financial Advisors Save More for College

More American families are asking advisers for help saving for college, and nearly all of those families have accumulated much more toward their goal than the typical family, according to a recent Fidelity Investments survey.

“This year’s findings are consistent with what we hear from our customers – parents recognize the importance of defining their college priorities and setting a strategy to save regularly,” said Keith Bernhardt, vice president of college planning at Fidelity Investments. “If families commit to saving, planning and talking about college priorities early, they are better prepared to meet college costs and help their children avoid significant student debt in the future.”

Liz Skinner of Investment News provides an overview of the survey results. Read the article here.

Click here to read the full results of Fidelity’s 7th annual College Savings Indicator study.

By |September 12th, 2013|Advisors, College Planning, Financial Planning|