The cost of a college education is higher than ever, and there is no relief in sight.  College expenses range from tuition, room, and board, to books, supplies, fees, and travel expenses.  The bottom line is that the sooner you start planning for college, whether for your children or yourself, the better prepared you should be to handle the “sticker shock” associated with getting a college education. 1 

There is no doubt that the sooner you start the conversation about college and how to pay for it, the more realistic the family’s expectations will be about what the family can afford to pay.  In the real world, many families do not start these discussions soon enough. So, in the end, the challenge of going to college, to even the least expensive local college, results in great disappointment and even embarrassment for family members.  In fact, it may be impossible for anyone in the family to attend college at all.

Average Cost at Public & Private Colleges recently reported that the average cost of college in the United States is $35,720 per student, per year, for the 2020-2021 academic year. The cost has tripled in 20 years, with an annual growth rate of 6.8%. The average in-state student attending a public 4-year institution spends $25,615 for one academic year. The average traditional private university student spends a total of $53,949 per academic year 2.

Don’t “Plan to Fail”

There is an adage that says, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.”  Establishing a plan for the aspiring college students in the family early on is essential to help reduce the challenges, anxiety, and expenses that the family will incur in obtaining the desired college education for family members.

The Longer You Wait

So don’t give up on the desire to go to college just because of its seemingly unaffordable cost. The longer you wait to make a plan, the fewer options you’ll have when the time comes.

Numerous Aid Options Available

There are several types of aid available to help you pay for your education beyond high school, including grants and scholarships, federal work-study jobs, and student loans.  Don’t wait until tomorrow to establish a plan for your college education.  Do it today!3

###Larry W. Marvin

LifeCrafter Money $ense

  1.  ©2016 Larry Marvin,College-Campus-Pic-2.jpg, August 16, 2018, 1 MB 2048 × 1536
  2. © 2021 report “The Average Cost of College & Tuition”
  3. Additional sources include the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation-FDIC and The US Department of Education