Ohio’s 529 Plan has dozens of options.

When choosing the right investment options for your family’s college fund, Ohio's 529 makes it easy to get started.

Some choose from ready-made portfolios. Some are comfortable building a portfolio of individual investment options. And others want the total safety of FDIC-insured banking options. We partner with leading investment managers Vanguard, Dimensional Fund Advisors, Fifth Third Bank and BlackRock (Advisor Plan) to bring you the best choices. And if your investment preferences or goals change, you can make changes twice yearly.

When it comes to ready-made options, you have two choices: Age-Based Portfolios or Risk-Based Portfolios. What’s the difference and which is right for you? Learn more and compare below.

Age-Based Portfolios

This college savings option automatically reduces risk as your child gets closer to college age. You may choose a fund that’s actively or passively managed, or one that combines both. All age-based choices will automatically shift to a different predetermined portfolio as your child moves through the established age bands.

Actively managed funds seek to outperform the market through the buying and selling strategies of the professional investment managers.

Passively managed funds include investments that are not chosen by a portfolio manager, but instead are automatically selected to match an index or part of the market.

Risk-Based Portfolios

Risk-based options allow you to invest based on your risk tolerance. Whether you seek aggressive growth or are conservative in your approach to investing, find several options along the continuum of risk that best suit your risk tolerance and goals.

The Ready-Made, Risk-Based Portfolios managed by Vanguard are passive index-based portfolios that contain the same underlying investments as the Vanguard Age-Based Portfolios, but no automatic exchanges occur as your child gets closer to college age.

If you want to adjust your risk tolerance from more aggressive options to lower-risk options as your child grows, you will need to initiate such exchanges to your investment allocations. Exchanges are limited to twice per year.

Ready-Made, Age-Based Portfolios

These options automatically adjust as your child gets closer to college.

  • Simple to use; long-term investments
  • Choose the uniquely blended Advantage Age-Based Portfolio which combines active and passive options, or choose from three passive, index-based portfolios from Vanguard, each tailored to suit your risk tolerance
  • Each portfolio's asset mix and allocation are pre-determined
  • Every age-based portfolio automatically reduces risk as your child gets closer to college age

 Compare Portfolios

Ready-Made, Risk-Based Portfolios

These options are based on your comfort level with investment risk.

  • Pick from among five portfolios to match your risk tolerance and goals
  • Risk-based portfolios do not automatically reduce risk as your child ages; you must manage risk yourself by exchanging your portfolio
  • Designed to achieve the desired level of risk and reward
  • Options from aggressive growth to conservative income

 Compare Portfolios

  • Choose a Fifth Third 529 savings account or certificate of deposit (CD)
  • Your money grows over time with the security of FDIC insurance to certain limits.
  • Same tax advantages as our Direct Plan
  • Other advantages include competitive market rates of interest, guaranteed rate of return, no fees, and a low minimum deposit of $25 ($500 for a CD).

 Compare Portfolios

International Equity Options (Stocks)

  • Investments in the stocks of international companies
  • Potentially higher returns over time with the highest level of risk

 Compare Options

U.S. Equity Options (Stocks)

  • Includes stock from small, midsize, and large domestic companies, both growth and value, across all industries
  • Potentially higher returns over time with the highest level of risk

 Compare Options

Balanced Option (Stocks & Bonds)

  • Active management
  • Exposure to both stocks and bonds

 Compare Options

Fixed-Income Options (Bonds)

  • Help diversify portfolios and reduce overall risk

 Compare Options

Capital Preservation Option (Cash)

  • Benefits savers averse to risk, or those with children close to or enrolled in college
  • Options include FDIC-insured bank savings and certificates of deposit (CDs)

 Get Details

If you already have a financial advisor, you may be interested in the CollegeAdvantage Advisor Plan offered by BlackRock. Ask your financial advisor for more information or go to
Blackrock logo
Back To Top