Go Back  British Expats > Living & Moving Abroad > USA
Reload this Page >

Is anyone saving for their kids college fees ?

Is anyone saving for their kids college fees ?

Old Aug 26th 2009, 4:44 pm
  #1  
Chocoholic !
Thread Starter
 
ChocolateBabz's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2007
Location: Houston, TX - Officially Not Shit since 2009
Posts: 2,315
ChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond repute
Default Is anyone saving for their kids college fees ?

We are an L1A/L2 family and have been here in Houston for 15 months now. Next review DH is going to ask for the green card process to start. Obviously this may or may not happen and it is always a possibility that we will head back to UK or elsewhere in the big bad world. At present we hope to stay long term. DS is 10 and has just started 5th grade. Back in the UK we had no college/university 'savings' for him but we are now thinking that we should get this started 'just in case'. I hear awful amounts of $35K per annum being brandished about and was just wondering what others had done in our situation. We could start saving monthly or forego bonuses and put them into some sort of plan but then what happens if we move or dude does not go to college (he is fairly bright so have high hopes but then he is only 10 who knows ). Am totally distrustful of financial planners as all they ever want to do is sell us more crap but if anyone has any recommendations in the Houston area please pm me!

All input appreciated, TIA.
ChocolateBabz is offline  
Old Aug 26th 2009, 4:46 pm
  #2  
Ginger Monkey
 
Gingerert's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2007
Location: Cheeseland, WI
Posts: 2,772
Gingerert has a reputation beyond reputeGingerert has a reputation beyond reputeGingerert has a reputation beyond reputeGingerert has a reputation beyond reputeGingerert has a reputation beyond reputeGingerert has a reputation beyond reputeGingerert has a reputation beyond reputeGingerert has a reputation beyond reputeGingerert has a reputation beyond reputeGingerert has a reputation beyond reputeGingerert has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Is anyone saving for their kids college fees ?

Originally Posted by ChocolateBabz View Post
We are an L1A/L2 family and have been here in Houston for 15 months now. Next review DH is going to ask for the green card process to start. Obviously this may or may not happen and it is always a possibility that we will head back to UK or elsewhere in the big bad world. At present we hope to stay long term. DS is 10 and has just started 5th grade. Back in the UK we had no college/university 'savings' for him but we are now thinking that we should get this started 'just in case'. I hear awful amounts of $35K per annum being brandished about and was just wondering what others had done in our situation. We could start saving monthly or forego bonuses and put them into some sort of plan but then what happens if we move or dude does not go to college (he is fairly bright so have high hopes but then he is only 10 who knows ). Am totally distrustful of financial planners as all they ever want to do is sell us more crap but if anyone has any recommendations in the Houston area please pm me!

All input appreciated, TIA.
Yeah, I wanna know this too! We want to get a college fund started but other than the banks we're not sure where to start looking.

Ta.
Gingerert is offline  
Old Aug 26th 2009, 4:49 pm
  #3  
MODERATOR
 
penguinsix's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2006
Location: Hong Kong, mostly.
Posts: 5,124
penguinsix has a reputation beyond reputepenguinsix has a reputation beyond reputepenguinsix has a reputation beyond reputepenguinsix has a reputation beyond reputepenguinsix has a reputation beyond reputepenguinsix has a reputation beyond reputepenguinsix has a reputation beyond reputepenguinsix has a reputation beyond reputepenguinsix has a reputation beyond reputepenguinsix has a reputation beyond reputepenguinsix has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Is anyone saving for their kids college fees ?

Look into what is called a 529 plan, which is a college savings plan that allows you to get some tax breaks. I think each state has a couple variations, one in which you can 'prepay' the tuition at a certain rate or another where you set aside money each year that he can take out when school starts.

$35k a year is a private school, or a public (state-run) University if you are paying 'out of state' tuition. If you can get 'residency' in the state (note: a different definition than the one used for immigration purposes) then you can pay in-state tuition at the local universities and save scads of cash (i.e. live in Houston, go to Univ. of Texas, or some other Texas state school for cheap). You'll have to investigate the residency requirements for the Texas university system for the specifics.
penguinsix is offline  
Old Aug 26th 2009, 4:57 pm
  #4  
Wondering if...
 
celticgrid's Avatar
 
Joined: Apr 2009
Location: Clarence, NY
Posts: 1,178
celticgrid has a reputation beyond reputecelticgrid has a reputation beyond reputecelticgrid has a reputation beyond reputecelticgrid has a reputation beyond reputecelticgrid has a reputation beyond reputecelticgrid has a reputation beyond reputecelticgrid has a reputation beyond reputecelticgrid has a reputation beyond reputecelticgrid has a reputation beyond reputecelticgrid has a reputation beyond reputecelticgrid has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Is anyone saving for their kids college fees ?

Originally Posted by penguinsix View Post
Look into what is called a 529 plan, which is a college savings plan that allows you to get some tax breaks. I think each state has a couple variations, one in which you can 'prepay' the tuition at a certain rate or another where you set aside money each year that he can take out when school starts.
I believe you are not limited to the plan offered by your particular state, i.e. you can sign up to a plan run another state.

Also note that (at least in NY) the state plan is not protected by bank guarantees etc. so if something goes wrong there's a chance all the money will be lost. A bit extreme of a case, but in the current economic uncertainty it might be wise to use an investment mechanism that is protected, even if it means a lower rate of return for the short term. All depends on individual circumstances...
celticgrid is offline  
Old Aug 26th 2009, 5:03 pm
  #5  
Concierge
 
Rete's Avatar
 
Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 43,895
Rete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Is anyone saving for their kids college fees ?

In lieu of the 529 plan, which I'm not sure will do you any good if you are not accorded a green card and have to leave the US before your kid starts their higher education, why not just start a savings account for them and when you do get your green card, transfer the money over to the 529 plan?

I know first hand from my nephew and niece that university costs were very high. My nephew who also attended law school after getting his BS at a private university racked up student loans for law school alone at over $80,000. His parents paid the undergraduate degree costs. Thankfully my niece had a full athletic scholarship for a private university and their costs for her were minimal.

Starting at age 10 is rather late but at least it will be a good start.
Rete is offline  
Old Aug 26th 2009, 5:04 pm
  #6  
BE Forum Addict
 
Joined: Feb 2007
Location: USA
Posts: 2,212
Deedee13 has a reputation beyond reputeDeedee13 has a reputation beyond reputeDeedee13 has a reputation beyond reputeDeedee13 has a reputation beyond reputeDeedee13 has a reputation beyond reputeDeedee13 has a reputation beyond reputeDeedee13 has a reputation beyond reputeDeedee13 has a reputation beyond reputeDeedee13 has a reputation beyond reputeDeedee13 has a reputation beyond reputeDeedee13 has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Is anyone saving for their kids college fees ?

mAYBE i am a bit out of the times but kids in my day that went to college were the brainy bunch the ones that wanted to become docs and teachers. Here in the states kids go to college "to find themselves" Which at the going rate today I find pretty damn amazing.

My oldest daughters grades are up and down and go up again when she needs something that she knows she needs my help getting it then they go down again . I work too damn hard to spend a fortune on a four year "find myself" project. The other (W)itch from hell is living the American Dream and working her ass off as she sees herself becoming some executive somewhere and her mother in an old peoples home in the middle of the desert where she doesnt have to visit but twice a year. She goes into a mental blackout if she gets a B. Which i think is still over ambitious as I would love kids to be kids in this day and age. However I will support her as long as she supports herself by keeping the grades up enough to warrent that amount of money.

Where we live in Michigan, lots of our friends are losing their jobs and still have the kids college debts to pay. Something that I dont want to fall into just because its the way things are done over here. I want the best for my kids dont get me wrong but the $$$$$ prices is damn high and must be a reason behind it as far as i am concerned. I found myself in the army. and a good time was had by all !!!
Deedee13 is offline  
Old Aug 26th 2009, 5:11 pm
  #7  
Concierge
 
Rete's Avatar
 
Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 43,895
Rete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Is anyone saving for their kids college fees ?

In my day, the college bound teen was smart and either came from a family with a college degree background with money and/or were scholarship holders.

Then later in my life, they went to college to "find themselves".

Today's teen go to college to have a hope of finding employment in something other than a trade and/or fast food/retail industries.
Rete is offline  
Old Aug 26th 2009, 5:14 pm
  #8  
Vegas Baby
 
vegas's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2003
Location: Liverpool>Fl>Tx>Ca>Nv
Posts: 567
vegas has a reputation beyond reputevegas has a reputation beyond reputevegas has a reputation beyond reputevegas has a reputation beyond reputevegas has a reputation beyond reputevegas has a reputation beyond reputevegas has a reputation beyond reputevegas has a reputation beyond reputevegas has a reputation beyond reputevegas has a reputation beyond reputevegas has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Is anyone saving for their kids college fees ?

My son goes to UNT his classes cost approx $3500 per semester and his accomodation this year is $550 per month as he is renting off campus. Last semester he was on campus and that was $900 per month. He spent the first 2 years at community college which cost him $2000 per year then he transfered to UNT and was credited with 2 years college so he will have gained a 4 year degree next year with only $15k of loans.
vegas is offline  
Old Aug 26th 2009, 5:15 pm
  #9  
Lost in BE Cyberspace
 
Bluegrass Lass's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2003
Location: My Old KY Home!
Posts: 6,498
Bluegrass Lass has a reputation beyond reputeBluegrass Lass has a reputation beyond reputeBluegrass Lass has a reputation beyond reputeBluegrass Lass has a reputation beyond reputeBluegrass Lass has a reputation beyond reputeBluegrass Lass has a reputation beyond reputeBluegrass Lass has a reputation beyond reputeBluegrass Lass has a reputation beyond reputeBluegrass Lass has a reputation beyond reputeBluegrass Lass has a reputation beyond reputeBluegrass Lass has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Is anyone saving for their kids college fees ?

Originally Posted by Deedee13 View Post

Where we live in Michigan, lots of our friends are losing their jobs and still have the kids college debts to pay. Something that I dont want to fall into just because its the way things are done over here. I want the best for my kids dont get me wrong but the $$$$$ prices is damn high and must be a reason behind it as far as i am concerned. I found myself in the army. and a good time was had by all !!!
That's just the problem, Dee. The trend for the last decade or so is that employers want people to have a college degree. If a person only has a high school diploma, they are at a HUGE disadvantage. Whether you agree with it or not doesn't really matter. Increasingly, those with only a high school diploma and no tertiary education are only going to be eligible for low-wage, labor intensive types of jobs. Very few (if any?) corporations are going to promote or hire people into higher paid positions if they have no formal education. This may not be the case if it's a type of job that certifications could be used in lieu of a degree (such as IT), and some trade/vocational jobs (plumbing). But even an admin assitant at a lot of places want at least an associates degree.

Last edited by Bluegrass Lass; Aug 26th 2009 at 5:18 pm.
Bluegrass Lass is offline  
Old Aug 26th 2009, 5:25 pm
  #10  
Forum Regular
 
big_fish's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2007
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 42
big_fish is an unknown quantity at this point
Default Re: Is anyone saving for their kids college fees ?

We've started 529 plans for our kids this year. You can use any state plans but most of the benefits are reduced state income taxes which don't apply here in Texas.

Provided they're set up correctly you can transfer any remaining balances from one child to another if say #1 decided not to go to college.

If you qualify with residency, in-state tuition, fees, accomodation for a public university (UT, A&M etc) is currently running around $15k/yr. For private more like $35k/yr.

I found this site useful for overall info http://www.savingforcollege.com/

& here's the texas 529 plan https://www.texascollegesavings.com/
big_fish is offline  
Old Aug 26th 2009, 5:44 pm
  #11  
The Kwisatz Haderach
 
Mummy in the foothills's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2008
Location: North Wales
Posts: 8,065
Mummy in the foothills has a reputation beyond reputeMummy in the foothills has a reputation beyond reputeMummy in the foothills has a reputation beyond reputeMummy in the foothills has a reputation beyond reputeMummy in the foothills has a reputation beyond reputeMummy in the foothills has a reputation beyond reputeMummy in the foothills has a reputation beyond reputeMummy in the foothills has a reputation beyond reputeMummy in the foothills has a reputation beyond reputeMummy in the foothills has a reputation beyond reputeMummy in the foothills has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Is anyone saving for their kids college fees ?

My oldest is in Uni at the moment 4th year. His Uni costs $37,000 a year that includes accommodations, minimum meals required by the living in plan (they have a kitchen) and his classes, it doesn't cover books, and any other bits and bobs.
Our cost is about $6,000 a year and he has some federal student loans that will total out at about $20,000 by next spring when he's done. And Cal grants and regents scholarship from the Uni
Not too bad I thought, he'll be done in 4 years unlike the state colleges where they have a hard time getting into the classes they need here and can take anywhere from 5 to 6 years to get the 4 year degree. This way he's in, out and on with his life.
We never had any savings for college, we never had a retirement going till recently, due to Dh jobs being in an industry where they were small companies and didn't have more than about 4 to 6 employees, we were dirt poor (still are )
Mummy in the foothills is offline  
Old Aug 26th 2009, 5:46 pm
  #12  
BE Enthusiast
 
helwardman's Avatar
 
Joined: Oct 2008
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 610
helwardman has a reputation beyond reputehelwardman has a reputation beyond reputehelwardman has a reputation beyond reputehelwardman has a reputation beyond reputehelwardman has a reputation beyond reputehelwardman has a reputation beyond reputehelwardman has a reputation beyond reputehelwardman has a reputation beyond reputehelwardman has a reputation beyond reputehelwardman has a reputation beyond reputehelwardman has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Is anyone saving for their kids college fees ?

My Mrs will be graduating from university in December with zero debt.
helwardman is offline  
Old Aug 26th 2009, 6:00 pm
  #13  
SUPER MODERATOR
 
Jerseygirl's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2005
Posts: 82,490
Jerseygirl has a reputation beyond reputeJerseygirl has a reputation beyond reputeJerseygirl has a reputation beyond reputeJerseygirl has a reputation beyond reputeJerseygirl has a reputation beyond reputeJerseygirl has a reputation beyond reputeJerseygirl has a reputation beyond reputeJerseygirl has a reputation beyond reputeJerseygirl has a reputation beyond reputeJerseygirl has a reputation beyond reputeJerseygirl has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Is anyone saving for their kids college fees ?

We didn't save for our daughter's uni fees because we always thought we would be back in the UK. Somehow it suddenly crept up on us.
Jerseygirl is offline  
Old Aug 26th 2009, 6:40 pm
  #14  
Lost in BE Cyberspace
 
Joined: Jan 2008
Posts: 41,518
Sally Redux has a reputation beyond reputeSally Redux has a reputation beyond reputeSally Redux has a reputation beyond reputeSally Redux has a reputation beyond reputeSally Redux has a reputation beyond reputeSally Redux has a reputation beyond reputeSally Redux has a reputation beyond reputeSally Redux has a reputation beyond reputeSally Redux has a reputation beyond reputeSally Redux has a reputation beyond reputeSally Redux has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Is anyone saving for their kids college fees ?

Originally Posted by Jerseygirl View Post
We didn't save for our daughter's uni fees because we always thought we would be back in the UK. Somehow it suddenly crept up on us.
My son is a junior and we have nothing in place. I'm still hoping we'll get back to the UK although that will mean overseas fees.

Sally Redux is offline  
Old Aug 26th 2009, 6:54 pm
  #15  
Chocoholic !
Thread Starter
 
ChocolateBabz's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2007
Location: Houston, TX - Officially Not Shit since 2009
Posts: 2,315
ChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Is anyone saving for their kids college fees ?

Fantastic replies - knew I could count on you lot. Think I will start putting something aside now and when we know if green card is go or no go look into transferring into a 529. Looks like if we can get the residency sorted out my dude will be staying close to home - .

It's funny as neither hubby or I have degrees and it didn't hinder us in any way but even his company will now only hire people with degrees. Drives hubby insane as he get's all the college grads applying for positions with no experience and not a lick of common sense between them.
ChocolateBabz is offline  

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.