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Jan 26, 2017 07:17 AM EST

Saving up for college is always a wise thing to do, helping to lessen the amount of money needed to be borrowed for tuition, or even be enough to pay for the whole four years of undergraduate education. Saving up is always a good thing to do.

Julie Shields-Rutyna, director of college planning for Massachusetts Educational Financing Authority (MEFA), told U.S. News that although her job at MEFA is to help families plan for their children's college education, she also has her own children to save college funds for.

Everybody struggles in saving up for college education, Shields-Rutyna says. "You really can't save too much," but you still need to continue saving, fitting college funds in the budget, she says.

And while it's easy to put off saving for college until the next year, the fact is that the larger the amount of money saved early on means the lesser the amount needed to worry about when the child graduates from high school and proceeds to higher education.

Whether you are already saving up for college or just thinking about it, here are some resolutions that will help you this year, according to U.S. News.

Start Saving

Nothing helps you save for college better than to actually start saving for it. Start by opening a savings account specifically for college, or set aside an existing savings account for it.

Set Up Automatic Withdrawals

Automatic withdrawals bring benefits. First, the amount you set up as monthly contribution to a 529 plan or a college savings account will come out straight from your bank about - no need to go to the bank yourself. Second, when you get used to it, you'll easily establish a habit of saving up, and can move on to the next resolution on this list a lot faster.

Increase Contributions

When you're already used to making monthly contributions, try stepping it up a notch higher by increasing the amount you contribute. If you started with a small amount, say, $50 a month, try moving it up to $75 or $100. The amount you save will grow bigger over time.

Put Cash Gifts Into College Savings

When you receive cash as gifts for your child's birthday or for Christmas, put it in a college savings account, Kevin Miller, a certified financial planner professional at Wyomissing, Pennsylvania-based Berkshire Investment Group, LPL Financial, recommends.

Also, don't be ashamed to tell people you'd rather receive gifts in the form of cash for your child's college education, especially if it's from family and friends. They'd appreciate the thought, not to mention you'd help them choose the best gift for your child.

Get Your Child Involved

Teach your child to save for college at a young age. Teach them to set aside amounts they earn from babysitting, or mowing lawns. The earlier they learn, the better.

Follows college savings, Julie Shields-Rutyna, Massachusetts Educational Financing Authority, Berkshire Investment Group, Kevin Miller
© 2017 University Herald, All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.

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