Section 529 college savings plans may offer college savers special tax benefits and are one of the most popular ways to save for college.
Tax advantages¹ and more
- Federal tax advantages
- State tax advantages (in most cases)
- High contribution limits
- Unlimited participation
- Professional money management
- Accelerated gifting
¹You must use withdrawals for eligible college expenses, such as tuition and room and board.
Choosing a college savings plan
Although 529 college savings plans are authorized by Section 529 of the Internal Revenue Code, they are sponsored by states, state agencies or educational institutions. Currently, there are more than 50 different college savings plans available because many states offer more than one plan.
You can join any state’s 529 college savings plan, but this variety may create confusion when it comes time to select a plan. Each plan has its own rules and restrictions, which can change at any time. To make the process easier, it helps to consider a few key features:
- Your state’s tax benefits
- Investment options
- Fees and expenses
- Reputation of financial institution
Most plans will allow you to contribute as often as you like which gives the flexibility to tailor the frequency of contributions to your own needs and budget, as well as to systematically invest contributions.
529 prepaid tuition plans
There are two types of 529 plans: college savings plans and prepaid tuition. The tax advantages of college savings plans and prepaid tuition plans are similar, but the account features are very different. A prepaid tuition plan lets you prepay tuition at participating colleges at today’s prices for use by the beneficiary in the future.
For more information, questions about 529 college savings plans or to ask how a 529 plan fits into an investment strategy, please contact a CFS financial advisor at Denali today.
*Non-deposit investment products and services are offered through CUSO Financial Services, L.P. ("CFS"), a registered broker-dealer (Member FINRA/ SIPC) and SEC Registered Investment Advisor. Products offered through CFS: are not NCUA/NCUSIF or otherwise federally insured, are not guarantees or obligations of the credit union, and may involve investment risk including possible loss of principal. Investment Representatives are registered through CFS. Denali Federal Credit Union has contracted with CFS to make non-deposit investment products and services available to credit union members.
**There are fees associated with 529 savings plans. Investments in 529s involve investment risks. You should consider your financial needs, goals, and risk tolerance prior to investing. More information about 529 plans can be found in the issuer’s official statement or plan disclosure document which should be read carefully prior to investing. Most 529 plans are sponsored and administered by states. State tax benefits vary among the states and some offer residents additional tax benefits if they invest in their own state plan. Consult a qualified tax professional for more information.
For specific tax advice, please consult a tax professional.