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The College Solution: A Guide for Everyone Looking for the Right School at the Right Price by Lynn O’Shaughnessy

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Advisors Versus Do-It-Yourself

Choosing 529 plans isn’t the same as shopping for white socks. While all these plans are dedicated to helping families save for college, the investments and the costs within these programs are wildly different.

Each state has formed alliances with mutual fund families or nationally known brokerage firms to offer investments within each state-sponsored 529. Vanguard, for instance, provides investment options for many state plans, including Nevada, Iowa, Missouri, and New York. If you invest in a 529 in Alaska, you’ll get T. Rowe Price mutual funds. Kansas 529 families will invest in American Century, and California and New Hampshire are among the states that use Fidelity Investments. TIAA-CREF manages plans in such ...

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