MoneyWise Live


529 Plan Mistakes

October 3, 2018

Higher education is a good name for it.  Since college costs get nothing but higher every year.  One way to manage those expenses are with a 529 plan. However, there are some things to watch out for and mistakes not to make.  On this edition of MoneyWise Live, Rob West saves us some money by revealing mistakes not to make with your well intentioned 529 plan for your children or grandchildren.

  • Rob explains what a 529 plan is and who can use them.
  • Then he lists some of the most common 529 mistakes.
    • Assuming your money will grow
    • Forgetting to adjust your asset allocation and savings rate
    • Getting the timing of your contributions wrong
    • Getting the timing of your withdrawals wrong
    • Emptying an account when your child doesn’t need the money

Then Steve and Rob take your money questions at 800-525-7000.

  • Is it worth it to use a 529 for justified expenses early on in a child's life?
  • Can you set a 529 up for someone other than your child? If you have a 529 that was set up for your children by your grandfather, do contributions you make offer any tax benefits?
  • Are contributions to a 529 tax deductible?
  • If you've previously purchased a life insurance policy for a grandchild, is a 529 instead a better investment?
  • If you've contributed to a 529 plan, does that affect applications for FAFSA federal student aid?
  • If you believe you are in the "last times", should you bother investing?
  • If you make very little and have trouble making ends meet, should you tithe at all?
  • If you've gotten a last start at investing, currently have a savings account for your children but wish to get a better return on your money, is a 529 a better way to invest?
  • If you've opened a credit card for department store that is no longer usable because they only have locations elsewhere, will it hurt your credit score to close that card?
  • If you've just received a lump-sum settlement from a divorce but have issues with investing the money in banks, what should you do?
  • If you have $500 that you wish to invest for about 5 years and plan to contribute about $100 per month for that period, should you use a CD?
  • If things are tight financially and you're having trouble with your spouse overspending, what can you do?

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