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College Advantage Partners With America Saves

CollegeAdvantage is pleased to participate in America Save Week, which will run Monday, Feb. 27 - Saturday, March 4. America Saves is an organization, managed by the Consumer Federation of America (CFA), which is dedicated to helping individuals save money, reduce household debt, and build wealth. In 2007, America Saves Week was established to encourage households and individuals to develop good saving habits.

To do so, America Saves Week advocates to first set a savings goal, then create a plan to reach the goal. The plan should include this year’s theme, saving automatically. To promote this, America Saves Week offers an online pledge to save money for a variety of goals — including education — and guides the participant to design a saving strategy to reach that goal. America Saves Week will send tips, reminders, and encouragements to keep the pledge-taker focused on attaining the saving goal. In a recent survey, many past participants said that taking the pledge was the needed push to start and/or increase their savings.

CollegeAdvantage stands in complete agreement with America Saves in encouraging people to save as well as to save automatically, especially for their children’s post-secondary educations.

Ohio’s 529 Savings Program helps families across the nation to save for their children’s future college costs in a tax-advantaged manner. First, all contributions and earnings will grow tax free in a 529 plan. Second, a 529 account withdrawal will be tax free when used to pay for 529 qualified higher education expenses. Third, if an Ohio resident is the CollegeAdvantage account owner, then their 529 contributions can be deducted from their state taxable income, up to $2,000 per year, per beneficiary, with unlimited carry forward. This means that $2,000 per year is not a contribution cap. The Ohio resident can subtract $2,000 per year from their Ohio taxable income until all the 529 contributions have been deducted.

Scheduling automatic deposits to be placed in an Ohio 529 College Savings Account is the easiest way to save before the funds are unintentionally used for other expenses. As America Saves Week learned, “the most effective way to save money is automatically.” That’s why it’s this year’s theme: Saving automatically is a simple yet powerful tool. With CollegeAdvantage, 529 account contributions can be scheduled to match paycheck deposits or monthly, quarterly, semi-annually, or annual contribution schedule.

America Saves Weeks also reminds that “saving a portion of your tax return can be a big step toward meeting your saving goals.” A tax refund also makes a great CollegeAdvantage 529 contribution. It’s an easy saving strategy. The average 2015 federal tax refund was $2,466. By adding $2,500 a year to a 529 plan, the account could cover as much as 40% of college at an Ohio public university, based on 18 years at 6% growth.

CollegeAdvantage is your plan, your way. By saving regularly through automatic contributions, even small amounts add up to big savings over time. Also, a 529 account is an excellent alternative to student loan debt. Saving for college now is far cheaper than paying off students loans later.

Ready to start with Ohio’s 529 Savings Program? It’s easy to open an account here. Already have an account and want to make some adjustments? Log in to a 529 account to update information, perform account maintenance, or increase the frequency or the amount of automatic deposits.

Posted on February 21, 2017

Ohio Tuition Trust Authority

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