Most parents understand how important it is to save for college. While a 529 plan is one of the most efficient and effective ways for families to save for school, many parents don’t know how to choose the right 529 plan. How is a parent supposed to choose the right 529 plan based on its performance?
A 529 isn’t like a regular savings account. A 529 account is a tax-advantaged investment vehicle designed specifically to help parents save for college. The keyword here is “investment.” Like a mutual fund or a Roth IRA, deposits in a 529 are actual investments meant to grow in value thanks to compounded interest over time.
Parents have many available investment options, ranging from aggressive options that lean more heavily on stocks to conservative paths with a heavier emphasis on bonds. The whole point is to provide parents with the control they need to make their college savings work for them and their student.
When choosing the right investment, many parents are most concerned with their account’s growth and wonder “How is my 529 plan performing?”
Whenever you’re making an investment, it’s important to understand the details of your North Carolina 529 Plan performance. Financial advisors recommend you look at the average annualized performance of the different portfolios. This may sound complicated, but it’s much easier than it sounds.
Breakdowns of your 529 plan’s average annualized performance will show you the percentage by which your plan has grown for the year-to-date, the past month, the last quarter, and how it did during the last year. You can even track North Carolina’s 529 plan performance as far back as three, five, or 10 years!
It’s important to consider the long game when looking at 529 plan performance. While a portfolio may not have performed well for one month, the average over an entire quarter may look much better.
With all of this in mind, you may also wonder about the North Carolina 529 plan performance and how it compares to other 529 plans across the country. Lucky for you, we have answers to help you learn everything you need to know about your 529 plan and how it’s making your college savings work for you.
The North Carolina 529 Plan was named in the top 20 performing 529 plans in the country based on its three year performance. The NC 529 Plan is in the top 25 for plans over the course of one year as well as five years. These rankings are determined by comparing all the nation’s different 529 plans based on their investments (stock and bonds) and how those investments performed in the long run.
There’s no question that a 529 plan is a great way for families to save for higher education. Now that you understand how 529 performance is measured and what you should look for, investing should be a no-brainer. Find out more about how you can open your NC 529 Plan and start taking advantage of compound interest for your future today!