National College Savings Month is drawing to a close

National College Savings Month is drawing to a close

by Julie Jason on Sep 27, 2018

Before National College Savings Month draws to a close, let’s talk about kids and college.

According to Sallie Mae’s 2018 National Study of College Students and Parents, “How America Pays for College,” scholarships and grants pay for the lion’s share of the cost of college (35 percent). Twenty-three percent is covered by parents. Nineteen percent is represented by student borrowing, and eight percent is parent borrowing. Eleven percent comes from the student’s own income and savings. Relatives and friends contribute four percent.

Fidelity, the financial-services corporation, has a college cost calculator online. You insert your child’s age and the type of college he or she will be attending (private, public and so on), how much you’ve already saved and what you intend to save each year. The planner will give you the annual cost and calculate the savings required to reach the amount required for a four-year college degree.

How about going to a college that replaces loans with grants? According to Sandra Block of Kiplinger, they are: Yale, Vanderbilt, Davidson, Princeton, Harvard, Amherst, Bowdoin, Pomona, Swarthmore and University of Pennsylvania. To read Block’s story, click on “10 Colleges That Don’t Require Student Loans.”

If you are planning to apply for financial aid, keep in mind that the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) opens on October 1, 2018. Deadlines vary by state. Find your FAFSA deadline here

Section 7 of my recent book, Retire Securely: Insights on Money Management from an Award-Winning Financial Columnist, offers additional columns on how to find the true cost and "value" of a particular college. Share this post with someone you know who is planning to send his or her child to college in the near future. You can hear an audio sample of the introduction to the book for free by clicking the title (above) and scrolling down below the book cover.