How Much Will College Actually Cost You?

While it is true that college tuition and fees continue to outpace inflation, it is also true that experts expect this trend will continue. If your child is very young, this could mean tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars to reach their education goal.

You’re not alone in your quest. Less than a third of current college families expect to pay the entire cost of their child’s education. This is why it's so important for parents to start saving, anything, as early as possible.

Source: College Savings Foundation, FinAid, College Board

By figuring out how much college will cost, you can figure out how much you need to save, and then begin your savings journey. Using our Cost of College calculator, run several options using the variable inputs to give yourself a range of options when planning your savings goals.

Cost of college calculator »

How Much To Save

Do I need a fortune teller? Or just a good advisor?

Ask yourself a few simple, questions about you and your child’s expectations:

  • Will your child be attending college in-state or out-of-state?
  • Will your child be going to a public university or a private one?
  • Will they consider starting with a 2-year community college program? Going into the traditional 4-year program following high school? Or a vocational or trade school?
  • How much of the total expense are you willing to pay for?

Keep in mind that tuition is only part of the total cost. Room and board, books, supplies and fees can be the same as or more than tuition costs. 

Use our College Savings Planner to take a closer look at how to pay for college using a CollegeInvest savings plan. It takes college savings goals into account, summarizes the total projected costs, and estimates the monthly savings needed to reach your goal.

College savings planner »

Risk Tolerance

Take the risk out of determining your risk tolerance

By figuring out your risk tolerance, you can better determine the asset allocation that's right for you. Questions like the following will help determine your temperament, which is a reflection of your risk tolerance:

  • Who influences your decisions? Friends? Advisors? Internet research?
  • Are you experienced in investing?
  • How do you feel about market fluctuation?
  • When the market goes down, would you prefer to transfer to safe assets?

Take a survey to determine your investor temperament and risk tolerance.

Investor temperament and risk tolerance survey »

Important Considerations
To learn about CollegeInvest's 529 program, its objectives, risks, charges, expenses, limitations, restrictions and qualifications regarding the Plans' benefits and potential tax advantages, please read and consider carefully the Program Disclosure Statements (PDS) available at before investing. Also, check with your or your beneficiary’s home state to learn if it offers tax or other benefits for investing in its own plan. Administered and issued by CollegeInvest.

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