3 alternatives to a 529

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Would anyone here care to share how they've decided to save up for their kids college education?

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FAMILY FINANCE
Kid-Friendly Plans
A 529 isn't the only option when it comes to saving for kids. Here are three alternatives.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424053111903327904576526654004159720.html

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Similarly, the south has the academic common market:

http://www.sreb.org/page/1304/academic_common_market.html

Conversely,... (more)

elektronic (Jan. 06, 2012 @ 12:51p) |

Sorry my bad, $72K for 5 years college of one time payment. Installments comes around $85k Total

PixelHeart (Jan. 06, 2012 @ 1:54p) |

Our current plan for our 2 kids is that we contribute to 529's for both of them up to the max for deducting from state i... (more)

barreg (Jan. 06, 2012 @ 3:08p) |

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Florida Prepaid Plan (NOT 529). Been bought and paid for since they were probably 7. Haven't used yet. I laugh when I see little to no mention of prepaid plans. States got smart and shifted the return risk onto the parents with the advent of the 529. Reminds me of 401k vs a pension.

Looks like prices have really gone up. We paid about $115 per child on 5 yr plan, tuition only. Now it looks like its $500+. FYI...they do allow for out of state colleges, you will need to look at particulars.

JaxFL said:   Florida Prepaid Plan (NOT 529). Been bought and paid for since they were probably 7. Haven't used yet. I laugh when I see little to no mention of prepaid plans. States got smart and shifted the return risk onto the parents with the advent of the 529. Reminds me of 401k vs a pension.

Looks like prices have really gone up. We paid about $115 per child on 5 yr plan, tuition only. Now it looks like its $500+. FYI...they do allow for out of state colleges, you will need to look at particulars.


FL Prepaid is a joke now - they want to charge $987 a month for five years for the four year university plan (around $51k in principal). Furthermore, this ONLY covers credit hours - nothing else, including the exorbitant fee structure universities like to charge (I remember paying almost $400 a semester just in flippin' fees that Prepaid didn't cover). This is mostly due to FL Prepaid tripling the costs the past three years. When my parents got this plan for me in 1990, it ran $5k over 5 years.

I started a 529 for my one month old.

Cashman said:   JaxFL said:   Florida Prepaid Plan (NOT 529). Been bought and paid for since they were probably 7. Haven't used yet. I laugh when I see little to no mention of prepaid plans. States got smart and shifted the return risk onto the parents with the advent of the 529. Reminds me of 401k vs a pension.

Looks like prices have really gone up. We paid about $115 per child on 5 yr plan, tuition only. Now it looks like its $500+. FYI...they do allow for out of state colleges, you will need to look at particulars.


FL Prepaid is a joke now - they want to charge $987 a month for five years for the four year university plan (around $51k in principal). Furthermore, this ONLY covers credit hours - nothing else, including the exorbitant fee structure universities like to charge (I remember paying almost $400 a semester just in flippin' fees that Prepaid didn't cover). This is mostly due to FL Prepaid tripling the costs the past three years. When my parents got this plan for me in 1990, it ran $5k over 5 years.

I started a 529 for my one month old.
Yes around 5k for 5 yrs for 4 yr degree. its really gone up. Grateful I got in when I did. Older plans are grandfathered into not having to pay some of the additional fees that they recently added in last 3-4 years. Not to say there still arent fees. Im not too concerned about that as my children can work and pay for everything else. Ive done all im gonna do, other than let them live with me, if they choose, and possibly with a small rent charge. If you paid only $400 for semester, be grateful as well. Bet youd jump all over your old plan, if available .

JaxFL said:   Bet youd jump all over your old plan, if available .

Hah! Of course I would. It's just my opinion now that Florida Prepaid isn't what it used to be - it was subsidized by Florida Lottery to encourage parents to save responsibility for their children's education. Not anymore.

Not a savings plan, but worth keeping in mind, is that there are a handful of well known schools which make it their mission to educate without charging exorbitant fees. Generally they either offer each student a full scholarship or the tuition is paid through student labor. Berea College, Cold Spring College, Juliard Academy, and the service academies are all examples of such schools.

Cash value of Life Insurance is not a field in the FAFSA form. For a family that thinks it might be eligible for aid, one of these policies can be a nice place to cheaply grow/store some invisible money for college.

Haven't seen too many that compete well, but at least there's no market risk.

UTMA is unrealistic, your child gets control of the money at age of majority. Yeah, as if I'm going to give them control of that much money. Next.

Coverdells: $2000 annual limit which will likely drop to $500 in the near future. That won't be enough to do a quarter at a private school in 15 years. Next.

Roths: fine, but most kids don't have substantial enough earnings to make this a significant course of college savings.

Which means we're back to 529s and taxable investing. A prepaid plan is usually created under section 529 of the IRS code. 529s offer special asset and estate tax protections not available to taxable accounts.

We have 2 prepaid 529s and 2 traditional 529s for our 2 kids.

If you have significant assests (i.e. you could afford to pay the whole bill) there is little reason to use the 529 it locks up your money and the returns for even the good plans have been disappointing.

If you are someone who could get some aid depending on assests/income then a 509 is an issue because they count 100% of the 509 assets toward tuition but only a portion of other family assets so it pays to keep it out of the 529.
If you have a really smart kid who can get into a top 10% college where they "guarantee" to cover the cost of tuition via a combination of scholarships and family contribution you should keep your assests as low as possible again the 509 adds nothing.
I see little benefit to 529 for almost anybody (unless a grandparent etc wants to foot the bill).

Ohio plan...investing for my kid..not much but something

I did 529 for my kid but it didn't quite work - the fund was mostly in the red. The bad part about losses in 529 plan - you can't deduct them on your taxes. So as soon as the fund turned green, I liquidated it and send the funds back to my checking account. Since very little gain, very little penalty. Went to my checking account instead of my son's due to the next 2 paragraphs.

The best thing that I have done is transfer long term appreciated stock to my son. If I remember correctly, in one year even though I was taking short term losses from my income, he was able to leverage the long term capital gains rate. If I had taken the gains on my taxes, the short term and long term would have wiped each other out and I would have missed on the differential between the short and long term rates. I also believe that first $800 was tax free, next $800 was at low rate and then parent's rate.

I also transferred more long term capital gains stuff to my son when he had enough summer income to start filing independently. This was really nice - no taxes on the long term capital gains. Filing him as independent also made him eligible for American Opportunity credit.

I would not touch Roth to pay for college. Roth is really for long-term untaxed gains. You withdraw early and you lose the advantage of it for future years. I did make my son do Roth - but this is money for his long term tax free growth.

psychtobe said:   UTMA is unrealistic, your child gets control of the money at age of majority. Yeah, as if I'm going to give them control of that much money. Next.

Coverdells: $2000 annual limit which will likely drop to $500 in the near future. That won't be enough to do a quarter at a private school in 15 years. Next.

Roths: fine, but most kids don't have substantial enough earnings to make this a significant course of college savings.

Which means we're back to 529s and taxable investing. A prepaid plan is usually created under section 529 of the IRS code. 529s offer special asset and estate tax protections not available to taxable accounts.

We have 2 prepaid 529s and 2 traditional 529s for our 2 kids.


Right, you have the ability to just plain ol save money. People get hung up on these programs, and as youve indicated they come with all sorts of strings. You can buy your freedom from oversight by not worrying about taxes.

Whats with this you have to disclose your income on applications, even after your child is over 18. Arent they legally an adult. Is this the case even if they dont live with you? Id go get the offspring emancipated, if thats the case, can you emancipate someone over 18, lol. If not then Id be less than forthcoming.

Have a Coverdell for one child. Have been contributing the max $2K for the past 7yrs. I plan on using this with and cash savings. I like the idea of the Roth, but it will not help with financial aid. If they change the limits to $500, I will probably rollover into a 529.
Since vanguard does not offer the Coverdell anymore. I am looking into a 529 for my son. Seems like the best option so financial aid is still a possibility. I may even start a 529 for my daughter as well to add some more money.
I like the idea of using long term stock sales transferring to my children, but again I think that will count against any financial aid.

FatWalletLurker said:   Cash value of Life Insurance is not a field in the FAFSA form. For a family that thinks it might be eligible for aid, one of these policies can be a nice place to cheaply grow/store some invisible money for college.

Haven't seen too many that compete well, but at least there's no market risk.


if you can easily afford a cash value life insurance then you will have enough other assets that you will not get aid. Agents like to trick you into thinking then you will now qualify but you wont. If you cant easily afford whole life insurance and are on the brink of being aid eligible then in all likelihood you will be one of the 75% of people who surrender it before death and thus get a terrible return. Also it depends on what type of cash value in regards to market risk. Works out great for the agent though. Additionally any amount above the state guaranty assoc is at risk although it is a low risk. One should only buy permanent life insurance if they really want a permanent death benefit. all these other ideas about tax free loans only make sense if you want or need the permanent death benefit. Otherwise it wont work out for you but just the agent.

Coverdell sounds interesting to me. Currently contributing to 529. I think I can do a Coverdell at Charles Schwab also for one child.

NVcheapster said:   Have a Coverdell for one child. Have been contributing the max $2K for the past 7yrs. I plan on using this with and cash savings. I like the idea of the Roth, but it will not help with financial aid. If they change the limits to $500, I will probably rollover into a 529.
Since vanguard does not offer the Coverdell anymore. I am looking into a 529 for my son. Seems like the best option so financial aid is still a possibility. I may even start a 529 for my daughter as well to add some more money.
I like the idea of using long term stock sales transferring to my children, but again I think that will count against any financial aid.
Just curious, if you dont mind...the value of that specific coverdell today is?

JaxFL said:   Whats with this you have to disclose your income on applications, even after your child is over 18. Arent they legally an adult. Is this the case even if they dont live with you? Id go get the offspring emancipated, if thats the case, can you emancipate someone over 18, lol. If not then Id be less than forthcoming.

If you have a viable, legal way around this issue I and the rest of America would like to know it. A link would be great showing that it actually worked.

I'm probably going to stick with a 529. My state is Wisconsin, and we get $3000/year in contributions that is state-tax deductible, so there's 6-7% right there. We have some Vanguard options in our account that aren't too bad.

Our primary source of funding, however, will be cash-flow. We plan to pay off the house before our oldest goes to college, and may convert our rental unit to a campus-rental for our two kids (maybe three some day?) through a 1031 exchange.

Good thread. I should look at a 1031 exchange too (just look into it for information) I also have a rental unit withing walking distance of a major university.

We also will have our house paid off before the kids are in high school so we'll be diverting that money towards their education. I am not going to pay off the rentals early because that equity will count against financial aid. Dh and I make about 60k a year so we should qualify for something with three kids. Also, our kids are African American and two of them are are academically gifted so I'll put a lot of time into researching scholarships.

Also, there is something I've been mulling over. My daughter is 23 months older than my twins so if she were to take a year off between high school and college (many colleges let you defer your acceptance a year) then I would have all three in at the same time for three of their four years. My sister in law lives in Paris and the rest of my in laws are in Africa. My daughter could spend a portion of that year taking French classes in Paris and staying with SIL and volunteering for an NGO in Africa and getting to know our family. It's something that I might bring up when the time gets closer. The idea is that you are eligible for more aid if you have more than one child in university at a time.

Finally, I expect my kids to work, take out some loans and pick a school that is financially reasonable. My parents never paid anything for my education and I worked up to three jobs at a time and managed to pay off my loans withing 8 years (Peace Corps and teaching on Navajo Nation helped) I don't expect them to have to do that but I do expect that they have a part time job and full time during the summer.

Good luck!

Cashman said:   JaxFL said:   Florida Prepaid Plan (NOT 529). Been bought and paid for since they were probably 7. Haven't used yet. I laugh when I see little to no mention of prepaid plans. States got smart and shifted the return risk onto the parents with the advent of the 529. Reminds me of 401k vs a pension.

Looks like prices have really gone up. We paid about $115 per child on 5 yr plan, tuition only. Now it looks like its $500+. FYI...they do allow for out of state colleges, you will need to look at particulars.


FL Prepaid is a joke now - they want to charge $987 a month for five years for the four year university plan (around $51k in principal). Furthermore, this ONLY covers credit hours - nothing else, including the exorbitant fee structure universities like to charge (I remember paying almost $400 a semester just in flippin' fees that Prepaid didn't cover). This is mostly due to FL Prepaid tripling the costs the past three years. When my parents got this plan for me in 1990, it ran $5k over 5 years.

I started a 529 for my one month old.


I second that the plan is a joke. I usually go on a tirade when it comes up, but it's bed time.
I get really worked up about it because we want to purchase as much as we can, but when the plan is $50k (vs $20k a few years ago), we can't do it.
Maybe the lesson to be learned is that I should have had kids a few years sooner.

JaxFL said:   NVcheapster said:   Have a Coverdell for one child. Have been contributing the max $2K for the past 7yrs. I plan on using this with and cash savings. I like the idea of the Roth, but it will not help with financial aid. If they change the limits to $500, I will probably rollover into a 529.
Since vanguard does not offer the Coverdell anymore. I am looking into a 529 for my son. Seems like the best option so financial aid is still a possibility. I may even start a 529 for my daughter as well to add some more money.
I like the idea of using long term stock sales transferring to my children, but again I think that will count against any financial aid.
Just curious, if you dont mind...the value of that specific coverdell today is?


The value of my 7 yr old Coverdell is just over $17K.

Another formal possibility --
From TreasuryDirect:
Education Tax Exclusion The savings bond education tax exclusion permits qualified taxpayers to exclude from their gross income all or part of the interest paid upon the redemption of eligible Series EE and I Bonds issued after 1989, when the bond owner pays qualified higher education expenses at an eligible institution.

For the 2009 tax year the ability to exclude savings bond interest used for QHEE was completely eliminated beginning at $134,900 for married filing jointly. No good for many. And your child can't buy in his/her name, because in order to exclude this interest income, the original purchaser must be 24 years or older at the time the bonds were purchased.

FatWalletLurker said:   Cash value of Life Insurance is not a field in the FAFSA form. For a family that thinks it might be eligible for aid, one of these policies can be a nice place to cheaply grow/store some invisible money for college.

Haven't seen too many that compete well, but at least there's no market risk.


That's why you pay a trustworthy relative to make the contributions into a 529 plan for your kids then. That way it doesn't count towards FAFSA even thought the 529 plan is in your kids name.

I also forgot that a key piece of our plan is to convince our children that they want to go to an in-state public university. We've started working with them already by taking them to campus to walk around, sit by the lake, listen to live music (they are 2 and 4 years old). Go Badgers!

We estimate we will need about $160,000 per child to pay their tuition and living expenses at college time.

full disclosure - neither Erinm nor Mr. Erinm are Badgers, but we have a lot of incentive to make sure our children are.

MET - Michigan Residents can purchase the Michigan Education Trust. Buy tuition at todays in state rate. This can be used at in the future at any State school (University of Mich or Mich State). Tuition goes up 5-9% per year, so safe investment. State tax deductible. Transferable to siblings.

Roth IRA for the kids is good but they have to have earned income (and most likely apply it all to the IRA to make a difference). For most kids who aren't modeling, that means it's not an option for at least 10-12 years of the first 18 yrs. Kinda leave a fairly short window for saving enough for college but definitely a good option. The caveat is that unlike 529 plans, it cannot be ported from one kid to another since the money is the child's money even if in an IRA. We'll probably do that to complement our 529 Plans but that also depends on the kids' ability/interest in earning income from jobs. Nice perk is that since it's a retirement account, it's generally not taken into account for financial aid qualification (not that we'd ever qualify but that may affect some).

Custodial accounts are ok but the money is the kid's. And tons of them offer no real advantage in terms of investment options or tax rate beyond some minimums. If they decide not to go to college or blow the money in any way you do not approve, there's nothing you can do about it. The kid totally control the money the minute they're 18-yr old. Good for their own money but not for mine IMO. Prior to that, you're custodian so you still have fiduciary duty to use it for the child's benefit. So a bit tedious to shift around if you need to. And as far as financial aid, this is considered child assets. IMO this is by far the worst option for saving for college. It's pretty close to not doing anything at all, and if trying to qualify for financial aid, assets of the child are even worse than assets of the parents.

Coverdells are good assuming you don't earn too much to contribute. They can be used right now for school tuition so might as well have one and pay school tuition costs from it if nothing else. But low limit is pretty restrictive. You're not gonna fund any kid's college tuition at the rate of $2k/yr investment, tax-deferred or not. Even if you don't tap if for school tuition. But hey it might pay for 1 year of college so a nice alternative to 529 Plans. One major caveat of coverdells is that once again at 18, the kid controls the money with all that implies for financial aid qualification and decisions on what to do with that pile of cash.

For us, our decision to go with 529 Plan was a bit easier since the in-state plan is good and offers some state tax deductions on contributions. Investment options are decent and features of 529 Plans fit our needs better than the available alternatives.

Is it better to open a Coverdell with a particular firm? Any comparison tools comparing the fees charged and investment options?

Some people use cash value life insurance. i.e. universal or variable life. Money can potentially come out tax free like a 529. Pm me for explanation. Advantage--money doesn't not have to be used for college, when it is used for college, you can use it to cover ANY expense you want or any where you want, AND child already has some form of lifetime insurance for future family regardless of his/her health.

Other comments--

I think Coverdell must be used by age 30. I think it, on the other hand, is the only savings plan that can be used for k-12.
529s may have tax benefits, but it depends on your state and the state of domicile for 529 plan.
529s can be used as estate planning tool. 5 years of contributions at once say from grandma and grandpa.. that 5 years worth x 2 all at once. It could help student and grandparents. This could go even further using mom and dad.. see next point
529s (in the past, at least) usually allow you to change beneficiaries. Important, because mom and dad can be benes initially and then change to child. or change from child 1 to child 2

using cash value life insurance is a huge mistake for this. Cash value life insurance should only be used if you really want or need a permanent death benefit. This is one of the reasons why 75% of cash value life insurance policies get surrendered before death and most are surrendered for a huge loss. Someone convinces you that they are a valuable tool but it takes you years to figure out why they are not. These strategies only work if you really value the permanent death benefit (which most people dont need).

The reason the money comes out tax free is you are taking a loan against money you already paid into the plan with after tax money. Nothing super special about doing this and if you dont highly value the death benefit, it is a horrible return on investment.

dhodson said:   using cash value life insurance is a huge mistake for this. Cash value life insurance should only be used if you really want or need a permanent death benefit. This is one of the reasons why 75% of cash value life insurance policies get surrendered before death and most are surrendered for a huge loss. Someone convinces you that they are a valuable tool but it takes you years to figure out why they are not. These strategies only work if you really value the permanent death benefit (which most people dont need).

The reason the money comes out tax free is you are taking a loan against money you already paid into the plan with after tax money. Nothing super special about doing this and if you dont highly value the death benefit, it is a horrible return on investment.

Please provide written source on '75% surrender rate.' (I don't believe that is a real stat.)

Please quantify a 'horrible' ROI and state your source. Others may different opinions about the results when it is actually quantified...


I am looking forward to seeing your sources and data. Without any, I find it difficult to give you any creditability.

feel free to use google. You will need to google whole life since that is the only one you will be able to find any data. You wont find any insurance company listing their surrender rates voluntarily.
Its about 50% early on. You wont find any of the informed agents like IE arguing with this.

The ROI is 5-6% for the death benefit for whole life as an example of one of the perms.

There is a very basic reason why this plan fails as a strict investment. They have high fees in addition to the cost of insurance. When they invest your money, they buy primarily bonds. Quality bonds for sure but none the less you have added costs and decreased your liquidity.

If you want a perm death benefit then get gUL with no cash accumulation for the cheapest but realize you have almost no flexibility and if you want some living benefits such as loans and are young then likely whole life from a non direct recognition company overfunded with PUAs up to the MEC limit. Still you must want the death benefit and not a strict investment for yourself.

Im sure you will try and come up with some BS otherwise.

You can use your Roth (and your spouse's) to pay for your child's educational expenses. You don't have to open a Roth in the child's name to do this, and you get to take out your contributions tax and penalty free. This is the route I'm going since I'm not even sure my kid will go to school in the US, which is a problem if you lock up your money in a 529 account. I did read that although your Roth is not counted against you as an asset, withdrawals from your Roth will count as additional income which could hurt your financial aid.

mylingomail said:   dhodson said:   using cash value life insurance is a huge mistake for this. Cash value life insurance should only be used if you really want or need a permanent death benefit. This is one of the reasons why 75% of cash value life insurance policies get surrendered before death and most are surrendered for a huge loss. Someone convinces you that they are a valuable tool but it takes you years to figure out why they are not. These strategies only work if you really value the permanent death benefit (which most people dont need).

The reason the money comes out tax free is you are taking a loan against money you already paid into the plan with after tax money. Nothing super special about doing this and if you dont highly value the death benefit, it is a horrible return on investment.

Please provide written source on '75% surrender rate.' (I don't believe that is a real stat.)

Please quantify a 'horrible' ROI and state your source. Others may different opinions about the results when it is actually quantified...


I am looking forward to seeing your sources and data. Without any, I find it difficult to give you any creditability.


I wouldn't challenge him I bet he knows more about life insurance you do. And he's been screwed over on a 412i plan so tread carefully.

Permanent insurance isn't a very viable option in 18 years because depending on the policy you will not have generated much % returns beyond your basis if even that over the holding period. Permanent insurance starts off at way negative returns and then over time the percentage of annual rate of return increases slowly(with another large bump at death).

Permanent insurance is a horrible vehicle for use in education purposes. If you earn low enough for your kids to be eligible for student aid then you also earn low enough that would likely be forgoing 401k, Roth, HSA, etc. contributions for the life insurance policy. That is particularly stupid since all of those accounts(except HSA) have special exemptions of penalties when money is withdrawn for use in education expenses. That is particularly useful in the case of the Roth because the money comes out income tax free and penalty free if used for education.

So to recap, if your earning enough to max out a 401k/403b, HSA, and Roth and still be able to buy a sizable permanent insurance policy than you earn too much for your kids to even be eligible for financial aid. If you take out a permanent insurance policy instead of funding those tax advantaged accounts because you came to the conclusion that the permanent insurance is better for Financial aid purposes than you were stupid because not only were those accounts more tax advantaged, better for retirement, but also could be used for education(given the exemption).

Also if your low income and you are paying premiums that can impact your ability to contribute to a 401k and lowering your AGI for the FAFSA test. And who knows what their income and asset picture is really going to be like in 18 years for FAFSA?

dshibb said:   That's why you pay a trustworthy relative to make the contributions into a 529 plan for your kids then. That way it doesn't count towards FAFSA even thought the 529 plan is in your kids name.
I agree this keeps the asset off FAFSA ("grandparent 529" route), but I thought that when you actually spent the money from the 529 on their college it counted as income to the student if it wasn't coming from the parents. This would screw up your aid unless it was used in the final year of college. I've only looked into this a little, so I'd be happy to proven wrong.

xerty said:   dshibb said:   That's why you pay a trustworthy relative to make the contributions into a 529 plan for your kids then. That way it doesn't count towards FAFSA even thought the 529 plan is in your kids name.
I agree this keeps the asset off FAFSA ("grandparent 529" route), but I thought that when you actually spent the money from the 529 on their college it counted as income to the student if it wasn't coming from the parents. This would screw up your aid unless it was used in the final year of college. I've only looked into this a little, so I'd be happy to proven wrong.


From my understanding its in dispute depending on a few factors that I've never really looked into, but why would you not back load the distributions?

First, you don't want to in any way negatively affect later student aid. Second, subsidized student loans are subsidized over the entire course of school so they have more benefit in early years vs. later years of college. Third, you allow more growth in the plan before taking it out. And forth, the focus is on the completion of college so paying for the back end of college out of the plan puts the focus on what matters most the degree not the early years spent in the program.

dshibb - all good points. I wasn't sure if it was possible to both save via 529 for the full amount of college, as well as hope to get financial aid if one could arrange to qualify. Presumably lots of people are in the situation where they can save somewhere between 1 and 4 years' worth of college and I didn't know if was worth planning to save closer to 4 or if other factors like 529 as student income aid disqualification could tilt the scales the other way.

PrincipalMember -

So, negatives on 529 are that it counts toward financial aid and you can't deduct fund losses on taxes. But you could only deduct them if you sold anyway, and if you leave things in for long-term investment that wouldn't happen. So really, the only 529 negative I can see is it counts toward fin. aid, right? And you get the state tax deduction upon investment. I'm not quite sure why you're so down on it? I agree it's not the best thing, but it's not a bad deal either.

Skipping 17 Messages...
Our current plan for our 2 kids is that we contribute to 529's for both of them up to the max for deducting from state income taxes ($3k per child in WI), then I contribute additional funds to my Roth 401k. My wife and I also both max out our Roth IRA contributions each year. When the kids go off to college, we plan to withdraw contributions from our Roth IRA's to help pay for college, up to the amount that we've contributed to my Roth 401k. That's money that previously would have gone into the 529's, but we decided to invest it this way so that it isn't locked into being college money and could be used for retirement.

If we weren't making the Roth 401k contributions, I wouldn't consider withdrawing money from our Roth IRA's to pay for college.



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