There are several reasons why saving is a smart way to pay for college:
Common college savings plans include:
Here are five key things to know before you choose a savings plan:
1. College costs have been steadily increasing
Due to inflation and other factors, the costs of college will likely continue to rise.
Including increases while in college
Today's 4-Year Cost of Attendance
Cost of Attendance The total cost to attend a school for a specified period of enrollment. This figure is determined by the school's financial aid office, and includes tuition, room and board, books, transportation, and other related expenses.
All costs - tuition, room & board, books, etc.
|Cost in 5 years||Cost in 10 years||Cost in 17 years|
2. The Cost of Attendance is not the actual amount you will likely pay.
The Cost of Attendance is the total price of college, not just the tuition and fees. It includes room and board, books and other expenses, and it can be steep. In fact, the four-year Cost of Attendance at many schools today is in excess of $100,000 – and even $300,000 at the “most competitive” schools. With prices like that, raising the money for college may seem like a nearly impossible task.
Fortunately in some cases, the Cost of Attendance isn’t the actual cost you’ll likely pay. That’s because some students receive “free” money like grants and scholarships, which greatly reduce the final college price tag, so you ultimately pay much less. The College Board recommends the families of college-bound students look at the actual price, or “net” price, when choosing a school.
3. One-third of college funding should come from savings.
When planning how to pay for college, the rule of thumb is that one-third of college funding should come from savings. So, if the Cost of Attendance for college is $240,000, you should try to save $80,000, if you can.
4. The interest earned on college savings plans may increase over time.
Make sure you pay attention to market conditions and consult with an advisor to understand how these types of plans work.
5. Investment and savings plans for college may have tax benefits.
Common college savings options like a 529 plan or a Coverdell Educational Savings Account have tax-benefits.
One of the most popular college savings options is the 529 plan. A 529 plan is an investment plan administered by state governments that is designed to help people save for higher education. One of the main benefits of a 529 plan is that earnings are not taxed by the federal government and withdrawals are tax-free when used for qualified higher education expenses. Many states also provide tax advantages for 529 plans. A 529 plan may be purchased through an investment broker, or in some cases, residents of a state may open up an account directly with the state, potentially saving on broker fees.
Although a 529 plan has a savings function, it is not a savings account, but rather an investment. As such, it may have more risk than a standard savings account. Here's some information about the two main types of 529 plans – the 529 college savings plan and the 529 prepaid tuition plan:
Coverdell Educational Savings Account (ESA)
An educational trust account, a Coverdell ESA is set up to pay the expenses of a designated student beneficiary, including college, elementary and secondary students.
Key features of the Coverdell ESA:
For more information on 529 plans, please contact a SunTrust Investment Services, Inc. Financial Advisor.
This content does not constitute legal, tax, accounting, financial or investment advice. You are encouraged to consult with competent legal, tax, accounting, financial or investment professionals based on your specific circumstances. We do not make any warranties as to accuracy or completeness of this information, do not endorse any third-party companies, products, or services described here, and take no liability for your use of this information.
Before applying for a private student loan, SunTrust recommends comparing all financial aid alternatives including grants, scholarships, and both federal and private student loans. View and compare the available features of SunTrust private student loans.
Union Federal is a federally registered trademark of Cognition Financial Corporation. Start Student Loan is a trademark of Cognition Financial Corporation. Both are used by SunTrust under license. Truist Financial Corporation (“SunTrust now Truist” or “Lender”) is the lender of these private student loans and they are not offered in connection with any other lender or the federal government. Cognition Financial Corporation is not an affiliate of Lender.
Certain restrictions and limitations may apply. Lender reserves the right to change or discontinue these programs without notice. These loan programs are subject to approval under the Lender’s credit policy and other criteria and may not be available in certain jurisdictions.
1 Source: calculated using The College Board’s College Cost Calculator on 11/16/17; assumptions: annual college costs, in today’s dollars, 5% college cost inflation rate, 4 expected years of attendance 1% of costs to cover from savings and 5, 10 or 17 years until college starts.
SunTrust explains how you can save money on college by making the most of financial aid.
Graduating with student loan debt? Here are some tips to help you manage the process.
It's crucial to discuss personal finance with college-bound kids.
This tool helps you to budget for living expenses for one year of college.
Determine the future cost of tuition based on the inflation rate you input.
For more details about Wire Transfers with SunTrust, call 800.947.3786.
SunTrust incoming wire instructions:
SunTrust incoming wire instructions are also available by calling 800.947.3786 - option 1
SunTrust Bank, now Truist Bank, Member FDIC. ©2020 Truist Financial Corporation. SunTrust®, the SunTrust logo, and Truist are service marks of Truist Financial Corporation. All rights reserved.
Equal Housing Lender
Investment and Insurance Products:
Are Not FDIC or any other Government Agency Insured Are Not Bank Guaranteed May Lose Value
All Truist mortgage professionals are registered on the Nationwide Mortgage Licensing System & Registry (NMLS), which promotes uniformity and transparency throughout the residential real estate industry. Search the NMLS Registry.Link opens a new window
Truist, SunTrust®, SunTrust PortfolioView, SunTrust Robinson Humphrey®, SunTrust Premier Program®, AMC Pinnacle®, AMC Premier®, Access 3®, Signature Advantage Brokerage, Custom Choice Loan®, SunTrust SummitView®, LightStream®, GFO Advisory Services®, BB&T®, BB&T Securities®, BB&T Sterling Advisors, Sterling Capital®, BB&T Investments, and BB&T Scott & Stringfellow® are service marks of Truist Financial Corporation. All rights reserved. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.
Services provided by the following affiliates of Truist Financial Corporation: Banking products and services, including loans and deposit accounts, are provided by SunTrust Bank and Branch Banking and Trust Company, both now Truist Bank, Member FDIC. Trust and investment management services are provided by SunTrust Bank and Branch Banking and Trust Company, both now Truist Bank, and SunTrust Delaware Trust Company. Securities, brokerage accounts and /or insurance (including annuities) are offered by SunTrust Investment Services, Inc. and BB&T Securities, LLC, P.J. Robb Variable Corp., and Precept Advisory Group, LLC, which are SEC registered broker-dealers, members FINRALink opens a new window, SIPCLink opens a new window, and a licensed insurance agency where applicable. Investment advisory services are offered by SunTrust Advisory Services, Inc., GFO Advisory Services, LLC, BB&T Securities, LLC, Sterling Capital Management, LLC, and BB&T Institutional Investment Advisors, Inc., each SEC registered investment advisers. BB&T Sterling Advisors, BB&T Investments and BB&T Scott & Stringfellow, are divisions of BB&T Securities, LLC. Mutual fund products are advised by Sterling Capital Management, LLC. Mortgage products and services are offered through SunTrust Mortgage, a tradename for SunTrust Bank now Truist Bank.
"SunTrust Advisors" may be officers and/or associated persons of the following affiliates of Truist Financial Corporation: SunTrust Bank now Truist Bank, our commercial bank, which provides banking, trust and asset management services; SunTrust Investment Services, Inc., a registered broker-dealer, which is a member of FINRALink opens a new window and SIPCLink opens a new window, and a licensed insurance agency, and which provides securities, annuities and life insurance products; SunTrust Advisory Services, Inc., a SEC registered investment adviser which provides Investment Advisory services.
SunTrust Private Wealth Management, International Wealth Management, GenSpring, Business Owner Specialty Group, Sports and Entertainment Group, and Legal and Medical Specialty Groups are marketing names used by SunTrust Bank now Truist Bank, SunTrust Investment Services, Inc., and SunTrust Advisory Services, Inc.
SunTrust Robinson Humphrey is the trade name for the corporate and investment banking services of Truist Financial Corporation and its subsidiaries, including SunTrust Robinson Humphrey, Inc., member FINRALink opens a new window and SIPCLink opens a new window.
Thank you for choosing SunTrust now Truist. We welcome the opportunity to serve your financial needs. While SunTrust and BB&T have merged to become Truist, both institutions will continue to offer independent product lines for a period of time. This may include differing underwriting guidelines, product features, terms, fees, and pricing.
Our friendly teammates at your local BB&T branches will be happy to walk you through their products. You can also learn more by contacting them at 1-800-BANK-BBT or BBT.com.