How a 529 plan works

One of the great advantages of a 529 plan is that it provides you with an easy way to save for college. All you have to do is enroll!

  • You open an account ("enroll") in a plan, sponsored either by your home state or by another state. 
  • You contribute money to a 529 plan account (you can set up an automatic investment plan to put your contributions on auto-pilot).1
  • Your contributions are invested in one or more investment portfolios that you determined when you first enrolled.
  • The investments typically include age-based or individual portfolios. 
  • When your beneficiary is ready for college or other post-secondary education, you withdraw the money from your account (you can typically perform withdrawals online, by mail, or over the phone to a client service representative).


1 A plan of regular investment cannot assure a profit or protect against a loss in a declining market.