Tallahassee, FL - FSU Junior Aaron Greenfield is reaping the benefits of his dad's forward thinking.
Greenfield says, "It cut the whole tuition cost so I could pay for my books."
His dad began paying into a Florida Prepaid College Plan when Aaron was 12. The family has saved thousands on Aaron's education.
Greenfield says, "Really, without that money you don't know where you are going to go and you could possible drop out because there is no money in your pocket."
There are four plans. Investors who bought last year had to purchase separate coverage for differential tuition. New plans cover the extra cost.
The rising cost of tuition and the economy caused enrollment in prepaid plans to decline in 2009, but a rebound is underway.
Florida Prepaid Spokeswoman Susan James says the earlier you start, the more you save. "The earlier the better with a child. You have the benefit of time in terms of saving for your child and when you lock into a plan you lock into a fixed cost for the lifetime of that plan."
To begin investing you'll need the beneficiary's social security number. If you're not the parent, you'll need the parent's address and proof of residency. There's a 50 dollars application fee and an initial deposit of 250 dollars.
The plans are backed by the state, so even if the investment pool goes bankrupt, the beneficiary can still go to college.