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Ultimate College Guide 2005
529s: State by state
A state-by-state listing, plus MONEY's picks for the top plans.
From the August 2005 issue of MONEY Magazine

  • Build an A+ college savings plan
  • Tips for choosing a 529 plan
  • The 529 alternatives
  • NEW YORK (MONEY Magazine) -- A state 529 college savings plan is best described as a 401(k) for college, a simple plan that lets you put aside money regularly, invest in mutual funds and watch the earnings grow tax-free.

    In the table below you can see, state-by state, the three things you need to know about each plan: Do I get a tax break? Where can I buy it? and What are the expenses? For more on how much you can contribute and how to go about choosing a plan, see "Tips for choosing a 529 plan."

    You can also view MONEY's picks for the best plans, both nationally and for in-state residents.
    MONEY'S PICKS ALL STATE PLANS
      STATE TAX
    WRITE-OFF?
    BUY FROM...
    (SALES LOAD)
    EXPENSE
    RATIO
    ALABAMA
    Higher Education 529 Fund
    Van Kampen
    vankampen.com 866-529-2228
    no plan1 (no load)
    broker (5.75)
    0.83 to 2.82
    ALASKA
    John Hancock Freedom 529
    T. Rowe Price
    johnhancockfreedom529.com 866-222-7498
    no state tax broker only (5.25) 1.30 to 2.95
    T. Rowe Price College Savings Plan
    T. Rowe Price
    troweprice.com/collegesavings 800-369-3641
    no state tax plan only (no load) 0.79 to 1.05
    ARIZONA
    Arizona Family College Savings Program
    College Savings Bank
    arizona.collegesavings.com 800-888-2723
    no plan (no load)
    broker (no load)
    none
    Waddell & Reed InvestEd Plan
    Waddell & Reed
    waddell.com 888-923-3355
    no broker only (5.75) 1.58 to 2.42
    ARKANSAS
    GIFT College Investing Planrecommended for state
    Vanguard/Upromise
    thegiftplan.com 800-587-7301
    yes plan only (no load) 0.85
    CALIFORNIA
    Golden State ScholarShare College Savings Trust
    TIAA-CREF
    scholarshare.com 877-728-4338
    no plan only (no load) 0.8
    COLORADO
    CollegeInvest Direct Portfolio College Savings Planrecommended for state
    Vanguard/Upromise
    collegeinvest.org 800-997-4295
    yes plan only (no load) 0.75
    Scholars Choice College Savings Program
    Citigroup Asset Management
    scholars-choice.com 888-572-4652
    yes broker only (3.50) 0.10 to 2.04
    CONNECTICUT
    Connecticut Higher Education Trust
    TIAA-CREF
    aboutchet.com 888-799-2438
    no plan only (no load) 0.69 to 0.71
    D.C.
    District of Columbia College Savings Plan
    Calvert
    dccollegesavings.com 800-368-2745
    yes plan1 (no load)
    broker (4.75)
    0.15 to 1.92
    DELAWARE
    Delaware College Investment Plan
    Fidelity
    fidelity.com/delaware 800-544-1655
    no plan only (no load) 0.86 to 1.13
    FLORIDA
    Florida College Investment Plan
    Florida Prepaid College Board
    florida529plans.com 800-552-4723
    no state tax plan only (no load) 0.75
    GEORGIA
    Georgia Higher Education Savings Planrecommended for state
    TIAA-CREF
    gacollegesavings.com 877-424-4377
    yes plan only (no load) 0.85
    HAWAII
    TuitionEDGE
    Delaware Investments
    tuitionedge.com 866-529-3343
    no plan1 (no load)
    broker (5.75)
    0.95 to 1.95
    IDAHO
    Idaho College Savings Programrecommended for state
    TIAA-CREF
    idsaves.org 866-433-2533
    yes plan only (no load) 0.81 to 0.85
    ILLINOIS
    Bright Start College Savings Plan
    Citigroup Asset Management
    brightstartsavings.com 877-432-7444
    yes plan (no load)
    broker (no load)
    0.99
    INDIANA
    CollegeChoice 529 Investment Plan
    J.P. Morgan Investment Advisors
    collegechoiceplan.com 866-400-7526
    no plan (no load)
    broker (5.25)
    0.75 to 2.64
    IOWA
    College Savings Iowarecommended nationally
    Vanguard
    collegesavingsiowa.com 888-672-9116
    yes plan only (no load) 0.65
    KANSAS
    Learning Quest 529 Education Savings Program
    American Century
    learningquest.com 800-579-2203
    yes plan (no load)
    broker (3.25)
    0.47 to 1.31
    KENTUCKY
    Kentucky Education Savings Plan Trust
    TIAA-CREF
    kysaves.com 877-598-7878
    no plan only (no load) 0.8
    LOUISIANA
    START Saving Programrecommended for state
    Vanguard
    startsaving.la.gov 800-259-5626
    yes plan only1 (no load) 0.15 to 0.28
    MAINE
    NextGen College Investing Plan
    Merrill Lynch
    nextgenplan.com 877-463-9843
    no plan (no load)
    broker (5.75)
    0.72 to 2.63
    MARYLAND
    Maryland College Investment Planrecommended for state
    T. Rowe Price
    collegesavingsmd.org 888-463-4723
    yes plan only (no load) 0.84 to 1.09
    MASSACHUSETTS
    U. Fund College Investing Plan
    Fidelity
    fidelity.com/ufund 800-544-2776
    no plan only (no load) 0.86 to 1.15
    MICHIGAN
    Michigan Education Savings Programrecommended nationally
    TIAA-CREF
    misaves.com 877-861-6377
    yes plan only (no load) 0.652
    MINNESOTA
    Minnesota College Savings Plan
    TIAA-CREF
    mnsaves.org 877-338-4646
    no plan only (no load) 0.65
    MISSISSIPPI
    Mississippi Affordable College Savings Programrecommended for state
    TIAA-CREF
    collegesavingsms.com 800-486-3670
    yes plan (no load)
    broker (5.00)
    0.70 to 0.90
    MISSOURI
    Missouri Saving for Tuitionrecommended for state
    TIAA-CREF
    missourimost.org 888-414-6678
    yes plan (no load)
    broker (5.00)
    0.65
    MONTANA
    Montana Family Education Savings Program
    College Savings Bank
    montana.collegesavings.com 800-888-2723
    yes plan (no load)
    broker (no load)
    none
    Pacific Funds 529 College Savings Plan
    College Savings Bank/Pacific Life
    collegesavings.pacificlife.com 800-722-2333
    yes plan1 (no load)
    broker (5.50)
    0.50 to 2.55
    NEBRASKA
    AIM College Savings Plan
    Union Bank & Trust/AIM Capital Management
    aiminvestments.com 877-246-7526
    yes plan (no load)
    broker (5.50)
    0.90 to 2.02
    College Savings Plan of Nebraska
    Union Bank & Trust
    planforcollegenow.com 888-993-3746
    yes plan (no load)
    broker (5.75)
    0.65 to 2.29
    NEVADA
    Upromise College Fund
    Vanguard/Upromise
    upromisecollegefund.com 800-587-7305
    no state tax plan only (no load) 0.65
    USAA College Savings Plan
    USAA Investment Management Company
    usaa.com 800-292-8825
    no state tax plan only (no load) 1.1
    Vanguard 529 College Savings Planrecommended nationally
    Vanguard/Upromise
    vanguard.com 866-734-4530
    no state tax plan only (no load) 0.60 to 0.81
    NEW HAMPSHIRE
    Fidelity Advisor 529 Plan
    Fidelity
    advisor.fidelity.com 877-208-0098
    no state tax broker only (5.75) 0.95 to 1.64
    UNIQUE College Investing Plan
    Fidelity
    fidelity.com/unique 800-544-1914
    no state tax plan only (no load) 0.85 to 1.14
    NEW JERSEY
    NJBEST 529 College Savings Plan
    Franklin Templeton
    njbest.com 877-465-2378
    no plan only1 (no load) 0.85 to 1.24
    NEW MEXICO
    CollegeSense 529 Higher Education Savings Plan
    Evergreen
    collegesense.com 866-529-7367
    yes broker only (5.75) 0.67 to 2.21
    Scholar'sEdge
    OppenheimerFunds
    scholarsedge529.com 866-529-7283
    yes broker only (4.75) 0.98 to 1.45
    The Education Planrecommended for state
    OppenheimerFunds
    theeducationplan.com 877-337-5268
    yes plan only (no load) 0.80 to 0.95
    NEW YORK
    New York's 529 College Savings Program Direct Planrecommended nationally
    Vanguard
    nysaves.org 877-697-2837
    yes plan only (no load) 0.58
    NORTH CAROLINA
    North Carolina's National College Savings Program
    College Foundation
    cfnc.org/savings 800-600-3453
    no plan only (no load) 0.30 to 1.37
    NORTH DAKOTA
    College SAVE
    Morgan Stanley
    collegesave4u.com 866-728-3529
    no broker only (no load) 1.67 to 2.21
    OHIO
    CollegeAdvantage 529 Savings Planrecommended for state
    Putnam Investments/Vanguard
    collegeadvantage.com 800-233-6734
    yes plan only (no load) 0.35 to 1.42
    Putnam CollegeAdvantage
    Putnam Investments
    putnaminv.com 800-225-1581
    yes broker only (5.25) 1.01 to 2.76
    OKLAHOMA
    Oklahoma College Savings Planrecommended for state
    TIAA-CREF
    ok4saving.org 877-654-7284
    yes plan only (no load) 0.75 to 0.77
    OREGON
    Oregon College Savings Plan
    OppenheimerFunds
    oregoncollegesavings.com 866-722-8464
    yes plan only (no load) 0.33 to 1.04
    PENNSYLVANIA
    TAP 529
    Delaware Investments/Calvert
    tap529.com 800-440-4000
    no plan1 (no load)
    broker (5.75)
    0.80 to 2.64
    RHODE ISLAND
    CollegeBoundfund
    AllianceBernstein
    collegeboundfund.com 888-324-5057
    yes plan (no load)
    broker (4.25)
    0.68 to 2.29
    SOUTH CAROLINA
    Future Scholarrecommended for state
    Banc of America Capital Management
    futurescholar.com 888-244-5674
    yes plan1 (no load)
    broker (5.75)
    0.30 to 2.60
    SOUTH DAKOTA
    CollegeAccess 529 Plan
    Allianz Global Investors
    collegeaccess529.com 866-529-7462
    no state tax plan1 (no load)
    broker (5.50)
    1.07 to 2.55
    TENNESSEE
    Tennessee's BEST 529 College Savings Plan
    TIAA-CREF
    tnbest.org 888-486-2378
    no plan only (no load) 0.8
    TEXAS
    Tomorrow's College Investment Plan
    Enterprise Capital Management
    enterprise529.com 800-445-4723
    no state tax plan (no load)
    broker (4.75)
    0.45 to 1.00
    UTAH
    Utah Educational Savings Planrecommended nationally
    Utah Higher Ed. Assist. Auth./Vanguard
    uesp.org 800-418-2551
    yes plan only (no load) 0.25 to 0.40
    VERMONT
    Vermont Higher Education Investment Plan
    TIAA-CREF
    vsac.org 800-637-5860
    no3 plan only (no load) 0.8
    VIRGINIA
    CollegeAmerica
    American Funds
    virginia529.com 800-421-4120
    yes broker only (5.75) 0.66 to 1.26
    Virginia Education Savings Trustrecommended for state
    VEST Investment Advisory Committee
    virginia529.com 888-567-0540
    yes plan only (no load) 0.85 to 1.00
    WEST VIRGINIA
    SMART529 WV Direct
    Hartford Life
    smart529.com 877-767-8529
    yes plan only1 (no load) 1.16
    WISCONSIN
    EdVestrecommended for state
    Wells Fargo Funds Management
    edvest.com 888-338-3789
    yes plan (no load)
    broker (5.75)
    0.35 to 1.12
    Tomorrow's Scholar
    Wells Fargo Funds Management
    tomorrowsscholar.com 866-677-6933
    yes broker only (5.75) 0.75 to 1.23
    WYOMING
    College Achievement Plan4
    Mercury Advisors
    collegeachievementplan.com 877-529-2655
    no state tax plan1 (no load)
    broker (no load5)
    1.82 to 2.43
    Notes: Expense ratios encompass all fund options, plus any management or administrative fees; other fees may apply.
    1 Available to state residents only. 2 Scheduled to drop to 0.60 percent. 3 Tax credit available. 4 Plan changes pending. 5 Broker earns 1 percent up front and 0.50 percent annually thereafter.
    Sources: The states, Savingforcollege.com.
    recommended for staterecommended for state     recommended nationallyrecommended nationally»top«

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