Planning Now to Offset College Expenses Later

By
Real Estate Agent with Carol West Real Estate, LLC 200407124

College classes, books, transportation, food expenses and college dorm rooms costs are going up. Costs seem to be almost out of reach. Now is the time to be thinking of ways to offset some of the costs while your children are still in Elementary or Middle School.

The ways to stretch the dollars are sometimes right in plain sight and we don't always notice them. Currently, we have a housing market with home prices very far below what would be normal market values and very low interest rates on loans. We don't need a crystal ball to tell us we can expect home prices to start climbing again and interest rates to rise. Remember how expensive dormitory expenses run, meals out and distractions found on campus? You can take steps now to control those expenses in your child's future by purchasing properties close by their future the state college.

Plan to use this property as a student rental for the time being. Buy at the bottom of the market at the lowest price possible and save the money it will cost when your student is ready to attend college. You could possibly gain an income source for additional saving, if a lower mortgage garners a higher rent leaving money left over after paying the mortgage.

Should you need to pay make up a small difference of mortgage payment above your rent, you will still create equity on your investment in time and declare additional interest on your tax return now when you need it.

Even further down the road of your child's future, you could save money when you pass along this home to your children as their own starter home after college.

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Rainmaker
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Anja Kerstens
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Morgan Hill, CA
GRI, CDPE, CHS, ASP, Selling Silicon Valley Real

Good advice, but with so many struggling homeowners especially in California, Nevada, Arizona and Florida, saving for college is the last thing they may want to think about.  Your blog is a good reminder.  They may not be able to buy a rental property but there are other options such as 529 plans.  Florida offers the Florida PrePaid program.  

Jan 17, 2011 10:40 AM #1
Rainmaker
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Carol West
Carol West Real Estate, LLC - Hillsboro, OR
Real Estate Agent, Hillsboro, Beaverton, Portland

Hi Anja, 

Thank you for your comment and reminder of other ways to save as well. 

Jan 17, 2011 10:59 AM #2
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Rainmaker
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Carol West

Real Estate Agent, Hillsboro, Beaverton, Portland
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