Sunday, November 11, 2012

Ways to Save When Sending Your Kids Off to College

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The cost of sending your child to college is getting to be astronomical. Tuition is rising at a far faster pace than inflation and there are a ton of additional expenses to consider. Here are a few ways to cut down on the many thousands of dollars you’ll be spending:

Avoid an expensive computer. Your child may have different requirements for his computer depending on his chosen field of study but, for most, the key features of a laptop are going to be reliability and portability. If the computer has a good reputation and is lightweight, it should make the grade. Therefore, shop around for a good deal but know that most laptops in the $500 – $700 range will do just as well as any fancier, pricier computer. Then you can spend the money saved on tuition and books instead.

Explore alternative textbook options. Speaking of books, these days kids have plenty of options to save. There are ways to rent, buy and resell textbooks. You can even purchase digital copies at a fraction of the price of a brand new physical textbook. Encourage your child to explore all of these options to come up with the cheapest alternative for securing books for classes.

Carpool. If your kids are within driving distance of your home (or even if it’s a long drive), encourage them to find people to share the ride home with. Sharing a tank of gas once in a while is far cheaper than having to maintain a car all year round or planning a flight home.

Invest in Real Estate. This is a unique approach and may not be for everyone, but if you think you’ll have multiple children attending the same college over a few years, you might want to look into buying an apartment or house close to campus. Not only will you be able to save on your own children’s room and board, you can receive an alternate source of income from some of their friends. You’ll also save on hotel costs because you’ll have a place to stay when you visit!

The information in this article is provided for educational and informational purposes only, without any express or implied warranty of any kind, including warranties of accuracy, completeness or fitness for any particular purpose. The information in this article is not intended to be and does not constitute financial or any other advice. The information in this article is general in nature and is not specific to you the user or anyone else.

Anne Perkins is a freelance writer focused on how to live large on a little living. She writes financial savings tips for the online payday loan company, QuickQuid, and enjoys taking any idea and making it easier or cheaper to complete.


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