Stew Lilker’s

Columbia County Observer

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Florida News

College Savings Days: Florida has a special offer for parents and families for the next 30 days

father and daughterTALLAHASSEE, FL -  Beginning yesterday - which happened to be "5/29" - Florida parents and families have an extra incentive to begin saving for their child's college education.

In celebration of national "529 College Savings Day," the Florida Prepaid College Board is waiving the $50 application fee for all 529 Savings Plan accounts opened before June 30.

Ivette Faulkner, spokesperson for the Florida Prepaid College Board, confirms that investing in higher education pays big dividends.

"Higher education is one of the best investments a person can make in a lifetime, and any step a family can take to help secure funds for their children's higher education is invaluable," she says.

With a Florida Prepaid College Plan, you lock-in today's plan prices and help provide your child with an opportunity-filled future that comes with a college education.

The Florida Prepaid College Board offers four affordable Prepaid Plan options that allow families to prepay the cost of college tuition, most required fees and dormitory housing. What you pay now is guaranteed, no matter how much college costs increase in the future. In addition to the Prepaid Plans, families may also purchase a University Dormitory Plan for on-campus housing expenses.

Find out which plan might be right for your family. Watch the video or view the chart to compare the plan. Click on the individual plans to see more detail.

Florida's 529 Savings Plan now offers six investment options, all of which have tax benefits. To open an account, families can make an initial investment of $250 or set up monthly investments for as little as $25. The income earned on the investment is tax-free.

As an example, says Faulkner, a monthly investment of $100 for 18 years in such a plan is expected to create more than $41,000.

"Eighteen years from now, we're not sure what to expect for college costs," she explains. "So, it's incredibly important for parents and families to talk about college savings and develop a plan."

Faulkner points out that reducing the amount of student loan debt helps students start their working years better equipped financially for such rites of passage as marriage and buying a home.

Photos and links added by the Observer

Photo: Florida Prepaid College Plans

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