{ "media_type": "text", "post_content": "Anyone have recommendations on what to setup financially for a child? Most people's primary recommendation is a 529. Anyone agree or have other investments/savings plans that are better?", "post_id": "595283081294f400164f530c", "reply_count": 17, "vote_count": 2, "bowl_id": "552d1d24dc1c586b09d2d051", "bowl_name": "Consulting" }

Anyone have recommendations on what to setup financially for a child? Most people's primary recommendation is a 529. Anyone agree or have other investments/savings plans that are better?

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Your child doesn't have to be born yet to start a 529. Put it in your name to get it going then switch into your childs name later

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529 is the best vehicle for college savings. Its kind of like a 401k but with generous tax benefits depending on state - your monthly contributions are typically so low it won't bother you

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You just need to set it up right after the kid is born - don't wait

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There are other options besides the 529. If you think your child will go to school in state, another option is a plan where you pay the current tuition rate now (lump or installments) and the plan pays for the cost of tuition when they go to school. Since college tuition historically increases 7% a year, this can be a safer option vs a 529 which is tied to the stock market.

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@D2 cool tip - I always thought you set it up after your child is born

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D2 and D3, super helpful. Thanks

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The college pre paid plans can be a good deal depending on what happens to tuition. Part of the reason tuition is going up is 20 years ago many were too good of a deal. They cannot be started until the child is born.

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Interested to see what people say.

Definitely 529, as that's the biggest financial Damocles sword hanging over parents' heads. Money withdrawn for qualified education expenses is free of Federal and state taxes, and if there's a plan in your state, there's probably a state tax break to sweeten the deal.

www.savingforcollege.com/college_savings_201/

Isn't 529 very inflexible, why not Roth IRA under the child's name?

@EY1, by design the 529 tax benefits are the main draw. They're flexible too because you still get access to the same investment choices as a Roth or Traditional IRA depending on your provider

That's what you're 'supposed' to do but you take out 1% of your paycheck for it, start letting that money grow, don't have a kid for ~2 years they'll probably have freshman year paid for before they can walk

@EY1, You must earn income or be married to someone who does for an IRA, so impossible for infants. However, they can work for you when they are 14 and then contribute to an IRA, but of course there are other tax considerations.

Didn't think you could open an IRA for a child. 529s are great - the ones for my kids have grown 5x since they were born 10-13 yrs ago.

Principle. While it's grown 5x, tuition has gone up 50x. And what will you do if one of them decides not to pursue higher education? What are the withdrawal/rollover options then?

I'm pretty sure a principals child is going to college...

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