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MADISON, Wis.— As the economic landscape of Wisconsin continues to change, many jobs will require some form of post-secondary education. And as families consider and plan for the cost of college, student loan debt is often one of their top concerns.
In Wisconsin alone, the average student loan debt comes in at $29,569 (“Project on Student Debt”, The Institute for College Access & Success, average debt as of 2017). And while this number can be intimidating for many families looking to reduce the amount of loans their child will need in the future, there are financial vehicles available to help them start saving today.
Edvest, Wisconsin’s 529 College Savings Plan, is one such tool. Designed to help families save for higher education expenses, Edvest offers over 17 different investment portfolios, and is one of the lowest-cost 529 plans in the U.S. The variety of investment options are designed to accommodate families at whatever stage they are in their college savings timeline.
Here are three reasons to start saving with Edvest today:
Take advantage of tax incentives – don’t leave money sitting on the table
Edvest is a tax-advantaged 529 college saving plan, which means the money you invest with Edvest could save you money on your state taxes. For 2019, account owners, regardless of their relationship to a child, may be eligible to deduct up to $3,280 per beneficiary ($1,640 for single filers) from their Wisconsin income tax. Limitations apply.*
Wisconsin families with more than one child or grand-child may be eligible for a state tax deduction of up to $6,560 for two children, $9,840 for three children, and so on.
For the 2018 tax year, Edvest participants have until Monday, April 15, 2019 to make contributions and still deduct up to $3,200 per child from their Wisconsin income tax.
College savings for more than just college tuition
Funds saved through Edvest can be used for higher education expenses, such as tuition and fees, room and board, books, computers and related technology at colleges, universities, technical colleges, graduate schools and certificate programs nationwide. No matter where your child chooses to attend school, their Edvest funds will go with them. And, if it turns out your child or grandchild doesn’t need all the money or their education goals change, you can designate a new beneficiary so long as they’re an eligible member of your family.
Employee perks worth investing in
Did you know that many Wisconsin employers now offer Edvest as part of their benefits package?
Similar to a 401k, employees have the option to make monthly Edvest contributions through automatic payroll deduction, making it even easier to be consistent with saving. Check with your HR rep to see if your company is participating.
Your employer can benefit too with the Edvest employer tax credit. Under the new incentive, employers who contribute to an employee’s Edvest account may receive a state tax credit equal to 25 percent of the total contribution. Please consult a tax advisor for the applicable maximum tax credit per employee per tax year.
For more information or to open an Edvest account today, please visit Edvest.com. Edvest’s college savings specialists are also available toll-free at 1.888.338.3789 Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
* To learn more about the Wisconsin College Savings Plan, its investment objectives, tax benefits, risks and costs, please see the Disclosure Booklet at Edvest.com. Read it carefully. Investments in the Plan are neither insured nor guaranteed and there is the risk of investment loss. If the funds aren’t used for qualified education expenses, a 10% penalty tax on earnings (as well as federal and state income taxes) may apply. Check with your home state to learn if it offers tax or other benefits such as financial aid, scholarship funds or protection from creditors for investing in its own 529 plan. Consult your legal or tax professional for tax advice, including the impact of the new federal tax changes. TIAA-CREF Individual & Institutional Services, LLC, Member FINRA and SIPC, distributor and underwriter for the Wisconsin College Savings Plan. Neither TIAA-CREF Tuition Financing, Inc., nor its affiliates, are responsible for the content found on any external website links contained herein.