This time of year, parents of high school seniors may find themselves experiencing dual emotions related to their kids – pride over the top-tier colleges their child has been accepted to and shock over how much it’s going to cost. Another emotion might quickly set in for those who haven’t saved enough for college – panic over how in the world they are going to pay for their child’s dream college. With the average annual all-in cost of a private university now approximately $50,000 and some elite schools in the $70,000 range, many people can’t easily pay for college out of cash flow. What’s the panicked parent to do?
Although my kids are still young, I am starting to learn more about the college selection process to help some of my financial planning clients with older kids. It is a highly complicated and seemingly mysterious process, but doesn’t need to be frustrating.