Here is a simple college savings program set up by the government for your kids. Basically, you can either prepay or contribute to an account established to for paying a students qualified education expenses. There is no limit on the amount you contribute and no income limit for contributors.
The amount contributed will be invested and managed by a private investment company (as well as the Oregon 529 College Savings Network board for Oregon residents).
The only catch is that when the money it withdrawn, it MUST be used for qualified education expenses or it will be taxed. If it is, no tax will be paid on distributions. These expenses include:
- Tuition and fees
- Room and Board (student must be at least half-time)
- Books, Supplies, Equipment
If you are an Oregon resident, there is an ADDITIONAL benefit. You can subtract contributions made up to $4,455 if you file a joint return ($2,225 for all others). Any amount you contribute over that can be carried forward over the next four years. You will likely see a savings in the hundreds on your tax return! (Depending on your tax bracket and amount contributed)
I think this program is a MUST for anyone looking to start a college savings for their children!
Please see this article from USAToday for more info.