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.

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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 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 higher-education expenses such as tuition; mandatory fees; books; room and board; required supplies; computers, including related hardware (e.g., printers) and software; and internet access and related services.

Beginning in 2018, qualified education expenses for federal tax and benefit purposes also include K-12 tuition at public, private or religious schools up to $10,000 per year per student in the aggregate across all qualified tuition programs for a designated student. 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 the Iowa Code Section 256.11 and adheres to the provisions of the federal Civil Rights Act of 1964 and 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. 

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.

Maximize savings

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.

Tax benefits

Save on federal & state taxes

Your account earnings grow tax-deferred, and you pay no taxes on your qualified withdrawals.* There is also a state tax deduction for Iowa taxpayers.**

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).

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).
  • Check.
  • Asset transfer from other college savings vehicles.

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.

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.

Low costs

You pay only $2.00 per year for every $1,000 you invest (0.20% 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.***

Save more with Ugift

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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.

Giving a gift?

Make your contribution to a loved one's College Savings Iowa 529 account even more special.