How Soon is Too Soon? College Planning Tips for New Parents
Welcome back to the blog! We use this outlet to try and help parents of WNY (and students!) to better understand the many moving parts of college planning. Usually, we speak more to parents of students who are in High School, or even middle school, but today on the blog we wanted to specifically talk with new parents.
Even if you think you’ve got decades until your first college bill, it’s important to know these things so you can begin saving ASAP. Properly preparing your child for college starts with YOU!
Let’s break down a few tips for new parents, a few years before they can have the “college money talk” with their son or daughter.
Use Your Resources
Discover and gather as much information as you can! We encourage parents to discover as much information as possible, and if you’re reading this blog, you’re already doing a great job! There are countless resources on the internet, but find sources you can trust! Local resources could include your school faculty, administrators, and also your friends and family! Ask around to see what others are doing to plan, and when they are starting.
The next tip we have is once you’ve done your research and have an idea of what your goals are, start to put action to the plan. Save whatever you can! It can start out very small, but if you can work even a small amount of regular savings into your budget, it can take great precedence for long-term savings. The only way to accumulate savings.. START SAVING!
Be Faithful to Your Commitment
Once you begin saving, don’t stop! Commit to the process and do your best to never to skip a savings deposit. One great way is to work a direct deposit in your paycheck into your kid’s college fund. Any size of contribution can quickly add up! This will make a huge difference in your child’s future!
Communicate As Much as Possible
The earlier you begin having “The College Money Talk” the better! Sure, we don’t think your toddler watching Blippy is going to know much about a 529 plan, but talking creatively with your kid as early as possible about their future can be a great way to get their own savings process started. So often we see teenagers enter the college planning process alone, with no help or guidance. Being a great parent means helping them every step of the way. Start talking about your kid's future, and college plan as soon as you can!
Read More- What You Can (or Can’t) Do with a 529 Plan
We hope this helps parents to understand that saving for college doesn’t need to mean having thousands of dollars being moved around. Saving for college can begin very early, and with very minimal contribution, but with ANY contribution, you can feel confident that you are getting a great head start on paying for college. If you want to speak with one of our certified college planning specialists, just give us a call or fill out the form on our contact page! We are always here to help parents and students of WNY!