College Savings Iowa 529 Plan highlights
Both you and your student can benefit from the many advantages that the Iowa 529 Plan has to offer.
Flexibility & control
Save for anyone
You can open an account for a child, grandchild, friend—even yourself.
Use at any eligible educational institution
Your student can attend any eligible institution in the United States or abroad, including colleges and vocational/technical schools. You can also use the 529 plan assets to pay for certified apprenticeship program expenses, qualified education loan repayments, and K-12 tuition up to $10,000 per year per student in the aggregate at public, private and religious schools. However, if the K-12 school is not in the state of Iowa you will be required to recapture amounts previously deducted.
Pay for qualified education expenses
Use the money in your College Savings Iowa 529 account to pay for qualified education expenses. Qualified withdrawals from your account can be used to pay for tuition, room and board (with limitations), books, supplies, fees and equipment required for enrollment or attendance at any eligible educational institution in the United States or abroad, as well as computers or certain peripheral equipment, certain computer software or internet access and related services that are to be used primarily by the Beneficiary during any of the years the Beneficiary is enrolled at an eligible educational institution.
Qualified withdrawals can also be used for tuition expenses in connection with enrollment at an elementary or secondary public, private or religious school. Section 529 permits withdrawals from 529 college savings accounts up to an aggregate of $10,000 per year per student for tuition expenses in connection with enrollment at a K-12 Institution. In addition, Iowa taxpayers can use the College Savings Iowa 529 Plan assets to pay for K-12 tuition with no Iowa state tax consequences as long as the student attends an elementary or secondary school in the state of Iowa which is accredited under Iowa Code Section 256.11 and adheres to the provisions of the federal Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Iowa Code Chapter 216, or (ii) an elementary or secondary school located outside the state of Iowa that educates a Beneficiary who meets the definition of “children requiring special education” in Iowa Code Section 265B.2, if the elementary or secondary school is accredited under the laws of the state in which it is located and adhere to the Federal Civil Rights Act of 1964 and applicable state law analogous to Iowa Code Chapter 216, or (ii) an elementary or secondary school located outside the state of Iowa that educates a Beneficiary who meets the definition of “children requiring special education” in Iowa Code Section 265B.2, if the elementary or secondary school is accredited under the laws of the state in which it is located and adhere to the Federal Civil Rights Act of 1964 and applicable state law analogous to Iowa Code Chapter 216. State tax treatment of K-12 withdrawals is determined by the state(s) where the taxpayer files state income tax. If you are not an Iowa taxpayer, please consult with a tax advisor.
Additionally, qualified withdrawals include (1) fees, books, supplies and equipment required for participation in an apprenticeship program registered and certified with the Secretary of Labor under the National Apprenticeship Act, and (2) amounts paid as principal or interest on any qualified education loan of the beneficiary or a sibling of the beneficiary; provided that the total amount that may be used from all accounts for repayment of loans of a beneficiary may not exceed $10,000. You should consult your tax advisor for more information.
Know there is adaptability
If your student does not end up needing the money, you can transfer the account to an eligible family member. Or if you really need the money back, you can get to it. However, a 10% penalty tax on earnings (as well as federal and state income taxes) will apply.
Find out about changing beneficiaries
You can contribute to your account until the total balance of all accounts for the same beneficiary (student) held in a State of Iowa 529 plan reaches an aggregate maximum, which is currently $420,000. This includes any accounts that may have been opened for that same beneficiary by relatives or friends.
Save on federal & state taxes
Your account earnings grow federally tax-deferred, and you pay no taxes on your qualified withdrawals.* Additionally, if you are an Iowa taxpayer, all withdrawals are free from state income taxes. There is also a state tax deduction for Iowa taxpayers.**
Learn more about College Savings Iowa's tax benefits
Ease of use
Start investing with a small amount
You can open an account with just $25. Each additional contribution can be as little as $25 ($15 when contributing through an employer's payroll deduction plan).
Find out how to open an account
Contribute how & when you like
There are several ways to contribute to your account. Pick the one that works best for you:
- Recurring contributions (also known as automatic investment plan, or AIP).
- Electronic bank transfer.
- Payroll deduction (if available through your employer).
- Asset transfer from other college savings vehicles.
Learn more about how to contribute
Manage your account online
You can view statements, make contributions and withdrawals, maintain your account and obtain performance information online. If you open more than one account, you can view them all with one user name and password.
Invest in a diverse investment portfolio
Choose 1 of our 4 age-based savings tracks, and your money will automatically be moved from more aggressive (riskier) investments to more conservative ones as your child gets closer to college age. Or choose from 10 individual portfolios if you prefer to manage your assets on your own based on your investment strategy and risk tolerance.
See our age-based savings tracks
Trust the experts
College Savings Iowa's investments are managed by Vanguard, one of the world's largest global investment management companies. Recordkeeping and related services are managed by Ascensus, a recognized leader in administrative services for 529 plans.
Learn more about Vanguard & Ascensus
You pay only $1.80 per year for every $1,000 you invest (0.18% applied annually). There are no sales commissions or advisor fees, and no fees charged for enrollment, account maintenance or withdrawals, which other types of plans may charge.
Earn extra savings
Sign up for the Upromise service
Upromise® helps you save for college by returning a percentage of your eligible spending at hundreds of companies. You can have all or a portion of those earnings transferred to your College Savings Iowa account (minimum of $25) on a periodic basis.***
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Save more with Ugift
Invite family and friends to contribute
Ugift® is a simple and secure online service that you can use to invite family and friends to contribute to your College Savings Iowa 529 account.
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Giving a gift?
Make your contribution to a loved one's College Savings Iowa 529 account even more special.