Saving for your child's education

So one of my New Year's resolutions was that I really needed to start saving for my child's college education. My son is only two years old, but I just kept getting upset with myself that we really hadn't said anything aside for his college savings knowing how expensive it is.

I know that there are many different options available to help you save for college but one of them is the 529 plan. My suggestion to anybody looking is to check out websites like Kiplinger and which have calculators and numerous articles on the topic. At the end of the day, one of the most important factors for me was having access to decent index funds and having very low fees -- as one of the things that I recently learned is how quickly excess management fees eat into your return over the long run.

Quite frankly I was surprised when I was playing with my profile that the 529 plan they offered was through Charles Schwab under the guise of being "free". Only after reading the fine print did I see how much that free account was actually going to cost and that sent me on my search for a better solution. So even though I live in a tax-free state I still found that the New York 529 plan was the best available to me and something I never realized was that many states offer state sponsored plans that are open to everyone. The lesson here is do a little research and don't just settle for your broker's plan or the one offered in state (although some in state plans can offer additional benefits if your child chooses an in state college).

I am happy to report that I started contributions to my child's New York 529 plan and I can finally cross off one of my New Year's resolutions.