College Savings

5 College Savings Tips

At MEFA, we're always quick to reinforce the importance of saving for college, but sometimes families can have a hard time coming up with ways to build it into the monthly budget. With a little creative thinking and persistence, you might be surprised by how quickly your savings can add up.


Here are 5 college savings tips to get your started.

1. Make your savings automatic. 
Whether you're putting money into a savings account or into a 529 plan, try to automate your savings contributions so that they come automatically into your college savings account each month. If you don't have to think about making the contribution, you'll be less likely to skip one.

2. Make saving a family affair.
Make saving for college a family priority by encouraging your child to put a portion of his/her money towards college costs. You can also encourage friends and relatives to contribute to your child's college education.

3. Reallocate 'expiring' expenses towards savings.
Just paid off that credit card bill? Done with daycare? Did your morning commute time get cut in half? If you have a regular expense that just ended, redirect that money into your college savings account. Since your budget is used to that monthly expense, reallocating those regular payments towards savings should be an easy transition.

4. Try the 'spring cleaning' approach.
Start by cleaning out the closets, junk drawers, the basement, and the garage. Collect all the loose change you find, and consider selling items that you no longer use to a consignment shop or online.

5. Be a smart shopper.
Try to avoid making 'impulse' purchases. Make a shopping list before you go on errands, and do your best to stick to the list. You can even take this a step further and use coupons, or stick to sale items whenever possible!
Were your college savings tips listed above? If not, we'd love other creative ideas to add to the list. Share them in the comments section below!