kindergarten children

3 Ways to Save When Your Child Leaves Daycare for Kindergarten

Dear parents of rising kindergartners: Congratulations, you survived the expensive daycare years!

Your little one will soon tick off a major life milestone, and there’s a tangible financial upside when leaving daycare for a public elementary school—more money in the family budget. These days—with the average family paying 20 percent or more of their annual household income toward daycare costs—the move to kindergarten can result in something of a monthly windfall.

What will you do with this newfound money? One option is to keep it in the educational sphere and take the long-term approach toward your child’s future college expenses. (After all, any money you save today is money they won’t have to borrow later!)

Here are 3 ways to smartly shift some of your daycare dollars:

  • Create an Elementary School Budget. Direct some of your cost savings to current expenses. Public school might be free, but it’s smart to set aside money for school supplies, clothing, backpacks and field trips. And as your child grows older, the costs of technology, study aids and educational opportunities grow along with them. Training yourself to budget early on pays off in the long run.
  • Lock in Future Postsecondary Costs. Use some of your new financial cushion to open a Florida 529 Prepaid Plan, locking in your child’s future tuition and most fees at today’s prices. Prepaid Plan payments are not subject to stock market fluctuations, and they’re fully refundable and guaranteed by the State of Florida. Prepaid Plans can also be used at in-state, out-of-state, public, private, trade and technical schools across the country.
  • Save Smarter. Funnel some of your savings from exiting daycare into a tax-free Florida 529 Savings Plan. It’s flexible, allowing you to save what you want when you want or even set up automatic payments for as little as $25 a month. When the time comes, your child can use this money to pay for a traditional four-year college or university experience, as well as certain apprenticeship programs and professional certifications. The Florida 529 Savings Plan will also cover housing and meal costs, books and supplies, and computers and equipment.

Have more questions? We’ve got answers! Explore our Frequently Asked Questions to learn more about our Prepaid Plans and Savings Plan. And click here to start your savings now!

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