State reminds families to save for college

AUSTIN – Tuesday was “529 Education Savings Day,” and Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar is encouraging families to save for their children’s higher education expenses using the state’s 529 college savings and prepaid tuition plans. “It’s never too late for Texas families to start saving for the future education of a loved one,” Hegar said. “One way to get a head start is by opening a new 529 plan or contributing to an existing one.” Texas offers three tax-advantaged 529 plans: the Texas College Savings Plan® (TCSP) and the Lone- Star 529 Plan® (LS529), both college savings plans, and the Texas Tuition Promise Fund® (TTPF), a prepaid tuition plan. The plans are known as 529 plans because they are authorized by Internal Revenue Code Section 529. The TTPF is designed to help families and individuals prepay and lock in today’s rates for all or some future undergraduate tuition and schoolwide required fees at any two- or four-year Texas public college or university. The TCSP and LS529 college savings plans allow families to work toward building college savings by investing in one or more professionally managed portfolios, either by enrolling in TCSP directly or in LS529 through a financial advisor. In addition to paying for higher education costs, college savings plans such as TCSP and LS529 now can be used to pay K-12 tuition expenses. The Texas Prepaid Higher Education Tuition Board administers all three 529 plans through the Comptroller’s office. To lock in undergraduate tuition and schoolwide required fees at 2017-18 prices, TTPF enrollment for newborns is available through July 31; for 2018-19 prices, open enrollment begins Sept. 1. Texas residency requirements apply. The TCSP and LS529 plans are open for enrollment year-round.