How to Pay Tuition

For most families paying tuition for college can be stressful and often confusing. Maximizing your college savings and lowering your tuition expense requires a mixture of strategies. Paying tuition properly for families is a combination of bringing together the financial aid process, college saving plans, educational tax strategies, various financing options and cash flow. I find it easier to evaluate this decision as an investment in a child’s future and not something you need to do as a parent. Creating a partnership with your child or at least discussing the finances of this decision is recommended. To maximize your college dollars, you need to understand the sequence of certain strategies.  The term qualified college expenses can have multiple definitions depending where it is being used.  For use in a 529 plan it is used one way but the definition something different when used for the opportunity tax credit.  Another point, especially for the tax strategies, you cannot reuse the same expenses for multiple tax advantages.  Many find this very confusing.

The video on paying tuition will review:

  • Strategies beyond the financial aid process
  • Summer and community college course
  • Graduation rates

Having a well developed college financial plan can save you thousands of dollars if done correctly.  Professional college financial aid help is available. Please visit our Services page for more information.