What To Consider As Your Child Grows

Watch your account grow up as your child does. Life milestones are the perfect opportunity to start, ramp up your saving, see how your account is doing, and take advantage of the Ugift® features on your account. The more you stay on top of it, the more successful your account will be.

You're expecting

  • Open a 529 account using your own Social Security number as the beneficiary—you can shift it into your baby's name when ​his or her Social Security number is issued.
    Open An Account
  • Suggest contributions along with your shower gifts by sharing your unique Ugift code.
    Learn About Ugift
  • Choose an investment portfolio or options and start building your plan.
    View Investment Options

You have a newborn bundle of joy

  • These are busy days (and nights!). It's the perfect time to set up automatic savings (AIP), even as little as $25 at a time.

Kindergarten comes fast

  • This is the best time to establish savings goals for the elementary school years.
    Set Your Savings Goals
  • Did kindergarten cut down your day care costs? Consider shifting that amount into college savings.
  • Preschool and kindergarten graduation have become big gifting occasions. Don't forget to share your Ugift code with loved ones.
    Learn About Ugift

Middle school means saving

  • If you haven't already gotten serious about college savings, now is the time. College comes fast, but you still have time to make a significant impact.
  • Combine your various pools of money earmarked for college savings into one 529 account to maximize tax advantages.
  • Suggest that family give contributions as birthday, holiday, and special occasion gifts to help meet your saving goals.
    Learn About Ugift

High school is the final quarter

  • By now, college expenses are becoming more clear. Use our tools and calculators to modify your saving strategy based on how much of the total cost you want to save.
    See All Savings Tools
  • If you're not using an age-based plan, this is when to review your investments and make sure you're comfortable with the risk level.
    Find Your Risk Tolerance
  • Adjust your contribution amount as your child gets closer to college, especially once they've decided on a school.
  • High school graduation is a great time to share your Ugift code to suggest that gifts come as contributions to college savings.
    Learn About Ugift

College years are here

  • Plan ahead to pay tuition well before due dates to avoid school-imposed late fees or being bumped from classes for non-payment.
  • Get the lay of the land for making withdrawals and paying tuition. Do you want to pay an account withdrawal directly to the college, to your bank account, or to your beneficiary? How does the college accept payments?
  • Make sure your withdrawals match qualified higher education expenses.
    See What Counts As A Qualified Expense
  • Be sure your withdrawals take place the same year you pay for college expenses.
  • Keep detailed records of college expenses and corresponding withdrawals for tax purposes.

Your account after college

  • Any remaining funds can be applied to future educational needs of the current beneficiary, including graduate school, or they can be transferred to another family member. 
    See Definition Of Family Member 
  • Consider keeping your account growing for the benefit of future grandchildren.
  • If you choose to withdrawal funds for non-qualified expenses, it may come at a cost.
    See The Penalties
  • If you're truly finished with your 529 account, it might be time to close it out.
    Learn How To Close Your Account
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