College Planning Services

College Planning | Manasquan Wall NJHarbor Lights Financial Group’s college planning services offer clients a commitment to the sound advice & strategy necessary. And because we have no obligation to sell any specific financial or insurance product, you can trust that we will only recommend those best-suited investments to our client.

So, What is College Planning?

When it comes to college planning, the questions related to planning that everyone must ask themselves include “what are the costs, and then how can we set up a plan to pay for them?” College Planning identifies all of the costs involved with a parent or guardian, it presents applicable savings options to support a plan and ultimately helps to implement the options chosen.

For starters, it’s important to recognize that the cost of college is more than just tuition and related fees. It is also going to include room and board, books and supplies, personal expenses like food, and then also transportation (to and from). It can be startling to admit that all these costs are real, not to mention the published college tuition prices in this day and age. The good news is that most college students will not pay the sticker price of their college choice. Not if various programs are pursued, such as aid, grants, and/ or scholarships.

And while the timeline for when one gets started certainly matters, families can save month over month by leveraging traditional savings or brokerage accounts, and there are also very specialized options for this type of saving, including:

‘529 College Savings Plan’

The 529 is a tax-advantaged savings account that is designed specifically for college education costs. The earnings from deposited contributions will grow tax-deferred. Then any withdrawals to pay for qualified higher education costs, including tuition, school fees, room, and board, are all federal income tax-free.

‘Uniform Transfers to Minors Act (UGMA/UTMA) Plan’

The UGMA/UTMA is a custodial account that allows a parent (or others) to make an irrevocable gift to a minor for college. It can be used for other purposes, but college planning is our target here. With this account, investment earnings are taxed at the minor’s income tax rate, which is obviously going to be much lower than a parent’s or other donors.

‘Coverdell Education Savings Account (ESA)’

The Coverdell ESA also allows one to save for college, withdraw money for qualified educational expenses, and to do income tax deferred. For this plan, certain higher-income households may not be eligible, For those that are eligible, the annual contribution is limited to $2,000 per beneficiary per year.

Ultimately, with 529 and Coverdell ESA accounts, interest on the money deposited can be earned just like any other savings account; however, money saved to these accounts, including all interest earned, will not be taxed. And that means more resources for college. Financial situations are unique, and there is always a lot to consider, but Harbor Lights Financial Group is experienced with and can support the right college plan!

Why Harbor Lights Financial Group For Life Insurance Planning?

In the early 1990s, Harbor Lights Financial Group was founded to offer strategies for our client’s most demanding life problems through sound financial advice and care. We offer our expertise to local Manasquan, Wall, and surrounding NJ community investors. Services may include wealth managementretirement planningestate planninglife insurance strategies, philanthropic planning, executive planning, business exit planning or planning for business executives, and much more!

We are also a team of advisors and CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNERS™ (see below) ­— professionals who help people like you with customized strategies designed to enhance and/or preserve your assets for retirement. We work to realize your financial goals, empowering you to enjoy the freedom that brings.

Robert Tendler – CFP CLU
Jonathan Shippee – MBA CFP
Douglas Lockwood – CFP
David Scureman– MBA CFP
Kenneth Roberts – CFP

Trust services are available through banking and trust affiliates in addition to non-affiliated companies of Wells Fargo Advisors. Wells Fargo Advisors and its affiliates do not provide legal or tax advice. Any estate plan should be reviewed by an attorney who specializes in estate planning and is licensed to practice law in your state.


If you have any questions, please get in touch with Us Today!