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College Savings

A reliable place to start is www.studentaid.ed.gov, which is a site run by the US Department of Education.

You can also learn a lot from www.collegesavings.org, which is run by an association of state treasurers.

As a good principle, it’s wise to start early and save a little bit each month.  For example, if you started saving $1/day ($30/month), over 18 years at a 3% interest rate, you’d end up with around $8,000.  It’s not enough to pay for the full 4 years, but it’s a start.  If you had $2 a day to save (what some people spend on coffee) you’d be around $17,000. 

If you smoke cigarettes, one reason to stop (not the best one) is that you can put away a lot of money for college.  Imagine that you smoked ½ pack per day.  At that rate, with a pack costing maybe $7, you might be paying upwards of $100/month on cigarettes.  If you put that money into a college savings account at 3% annual interest, you’d have about $28,000 saved for college.

[this page was last updated by Robert Needlman, on 11-25-2018]