Ways to Save for a Degree

As the cost of college tuition continues to rise, prospective students and parents need to find ways to save for a college degree. The sooner you get started, the more you will have when it comes time to start paying for college. Unfortunately, most people do not get started and end up scrambling to find the money for a college education. Here are a few things to do both early on and when it is getting down to the wire.

Savings Account

While it might seem obvious, most people just do not start a savings account for their children. It could be they feel they do not have any extra money to put in it or maybe they just do not think about it. You do not need to make big deposits, the important thing is to have it and forget about it. When your child gets money for a birthday or Christmas, make them put half of it in the account. If they are working, even just a small job for spending money, have them put half of what they earn in the account. Over the years, this money will add up. When it comes time for graduation from high school, take all the money they receive and put it in the account. By the time the first semester rolls around, they will most likely have enough saved to cover it. When you add grants and scholarships, they could have enough for at least the first year.

Savings Bonds

Instead of having a savings account that can be depleted easily, use birthday money to buy a savings bond. Over the years, the interest will add up and as you buy one for each birthday, there should be a nice amount come college time. Depending on how much money they receive, they may be able to buy two bonds. Ask relatives to give a bond instead of cash or perhaps a bond and a small amount of cash to spend on something wanted.

Summer Jobs

If you have made it all the way to through high school and have nothing saved towards your college education, you need to find a decent summer job and save all, or almost all, of your income for school. While it might not seem like the most fun thing to do, you can make it work. If you live close to a tourist area, you can often get a job, live with a group of friends and save some money. You can spend your off time doing fun, free things to avoid spending more than necessary. Many students find they can go back to the same job year after year to make money for the coming year.

Going to college is not cheap. You are going to need to put together all your resources and spend a lot of time hunting down and applying for scholarships. Take the initiative and start saving as soon as possible to make things easier or you may end up with a bunch of student loans.

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