College funding

  • College student budgeting 101

    Jul 23, 2013
    College students are heading back to campus, their bank accounts replenished with summer job money and possibly student loan funds. Will it be enough to last all year? There are ways to improve the odds. Careful planning can increase the likelihood that students won’t run out of money by spring break and have to rely on more loans to help bridge the gap to the end of the semester.
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  • Giving the gift of financial planning

    May 29, 2013
    June means longer days, the start of summer, and invitations to weddings, graduation parties and maybe a baby shower or two. Stuck for ideas on what to give the newlyweds, graduates or new parents? This year, consider something nontraditional that will last a lifetime and never go out of style: a visit with a financial planner.
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  • Student loan debt and default: Don’t sacrifice your credit

    Feb 27, 2013
    Earning a college degree used to be the default route to a secure future. However, the financial crisis of the last five years has thrown a wrench into the works. Parents have found themselves unable to assist with tuition, cuts in state funding mean fewer grants and scholarships available, and students are turning to government-backed student loans to finance tuition and make ends meet.
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  • Credit Cards 101

    Jul 24, 2012
    American college students are swimming in a sea of credit card debt. Despite the CARD Act of 2009, which tightened laws on credit card companies who were doling out credit cards like candy to every college student on campus, a recent study shows that 70 percent of college students have credit cards.
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  • It’s college textbook time

    Jul 24, 2012
    The cost of textbooks has always been a significant expenditure for college students. The cost for books falls right behind tuition, room and board. Today there are many different options for students to consider including not purchasing at all, but renting. Digital textbook alternatives offer students new ways to buy according to their class requirements and potentially save money.
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  • Do’s and don’ts for withdrawals from 529 plans

    Jun 29, 2012
    Total tax-advantaged 529 college savings plan assets are expected to balloon to $237 billion by the end of 2015, according to Financial Research Corporation. If you or someone in your family is planning to start college soon, it’s likely you might be poised to withdraw money from one of these plans. But before you do, the Ohio Society of CPAs offers this advice.
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  • Using 529 plans to fund grad school and education for career changes

    Jun 29, 2012
    College and postsecondary education is no longer just for young people. There was a 43% jump in the number of students age 25 and older during the first decade of this century, and another 23% rise is expected by 2019, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. These older students face many of the same challenges as their younger classmates, including paying for the high costs of a college or graduate education. That’s why they should be aware of all their options, including the opportunity to build tax-free earnings in a 529 college savings plan. The Ohio Society of CPAs explains how it works.
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  • How to cope when adult children move back home

    Apr 25, 2012
    Difficult economic times and a tight job market have sent an unprecedented number of adult children back home to live with their parents. A 2010 Pew Research Center study showed 21.6% of adults ages 25 – 34 were living in a multi-generational household. Welcome to the Boomerang Generation.
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  • Establishing healthy financial habits that will last a lifetime

    Apr 24, 2012
    School is almost out for summer and with warmer weather comes summer jobs, family vacations and preparation for the next school year. If you’re a parent worried about your kids saving habits, there’s encouraging news. According to a poll by the Northwestern Mutual Foundation's financial literacy website, Themint.org, 79% of people say they would rather have $500 dollars to spend five years from now than $50 to spend today. Although younger people continue to save less than older folks, the overall trend is towards increased financial literacy. Why not use this summer to improve your family’s financial habits? It will definitely pay off.
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  • Financial planning for veterans and their families

    Feb 17, 2012
    When planning for lifetime income and expenses, veterans may qualify for resources unavailable to civilians. Financial planners need to help determine which are available to the dependents of veterans, which are exclusively for veterans with a service-connected disability, which are actionable only upon discharge and which include choices available during the financial planning process later in life. Three major considerations are major life-cycle events, income and insurance.
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  • What college students need to know about credit cards

    Sep 28, 2011
    The Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009 (known as the Credit CARD Act) placed limits on the ability of those under 21 to get a credit card. It also set strict limits on card companies’ ability to market to college students. However, whether they get a credit card now or later, it’s a good idea for young adults to learn good credit habits early. The Ohio Society of CPAs recommends these tips for avoiding credit pitfalls.
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  • Tips for saving money on the first year of college

    Sep 28, 2011
    Everyone knows that college tuition and fees are high-cost items, but what about the many other expenses associated with higher education? Parents of freshmen are often very surprised by the price of books, travel, dorm accessories and other college necessities. In fact, this year parents are expected to spend an average of just over $800 on purchases that include clothes, electronics, dorm furnishings and food, according to the National Retail Federation. The Ohio Society of CPAs offers six tips for saving on college expenses.
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  • How the tax laws can help lower education costs

    Aug 10, 2011
    It’s no secret that sticker shock sets in quickly when you’re looking at education expenses. The price for yearly tuition alone can range from nearly $8,000 at public four-year colleges for in-state students to an eye-popping $35,000 or more at private four-year institutions, according to the College Board. And those amounts don’t include the cost of room and board as well as other expenses. The good news is that the tax laws offer a number of opportunities to minimize your out-of-pocket education costs, if you know how to make the most of them. The Ohio Society of CPAs provides these valuable tips.
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  • The best way to save for college

    Aug 10, 2011
    In the college savings game, all strategies aren't created equal. Should you choose a 529 plan, a Coverdell education savings account, or an UGMA/UTMA custodial account in your child's name? Or would you rather put your money in a mutual fund in your own name? Ideally, you'll want to choose a savings vehicle that offers you the best combination of tax advantages, financial aid benefits, and flexibility while meeting your overall investment needs.
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  • Student loan basics

    Aug 10, 2011
    You vaguely remember signing a piece of paper every year at college registration time. Now that you've graduated, it's all become painfully clear--those pieces of paper were promissory notes detailing your student loan obligations. Your loans aren't going to go away, and you'll want to repay them as quickly and easily as possible. So whether you have a small sum or a small fortune to pay off, you'll want to brush up on some student loan basics.
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  • Sticker shock: Creative ways to lower the cost of college

    Aug 10, 2011
    Even with all of your savvy college shopping and research about financial aid, college costs may still be prohibitive. At these prices, you expect you'll need to make substantial financial sacrifices to send your child to college. Or maybe your child won't be able to attend the college of his or her choice at all. Before you throw in the towel, though, you and your child should consider steps that can actually lower college costs. Although some of these ideas deviate from the typical four-year college experience, they just might be your child's ticket to college--and your ticket to financial sanity.
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  • Saving for retirement and your child’s education at the same time

    Aug 09, 2011
    You want to retire comfortably when the time comes. You also want to help your child go to college. So how do you juggle the two? The truth is, saving for your retirement and your child's education at the same time can be a challenge. But take heart--you may be able to reach both goals if you make some smart choices now.
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  • Offset education costs

    Aug 09, 2011
    Education tax credits can help offset the costs of higher education for yourself or a dependent. The Hope Credit and the Lifetime Learning Credit are two education credits available which may benefit you. Because they are credits rather than deductions, you may be able to subtract them in full, dollar for dollar, from your federal income tax.
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  • Is a 529 plan the right solution for me?

    Aug 09, 2011
    Each year, the cost of earning a college degree rises a little higher. What can you do to keep up?
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  • ABC's of financial aid

    Aug 09, 2011
    These days, it's hard to talk about college without mentioning financial aid. Yet this pairing isn't a marriage of love, but one of necessity. After all, financial aid may be the deciding factor in whether your child attends the college of his or her choice or even attends college at all. That's why it's important to develop a basic understanding of financial aid before your child applies to college. Without such knowledge, you may have trouble understanding the process of aid determination, filling out the proper aid applications, and comparing the financial aid awards that your child receives.
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