A 529 (for those not in the know) is a savings plan, designed to help people save money for future college expenses. There are certain tax-benefits involved with 529s that make them very attractive.
Of course, most people send their children to public school, and so might have money to set aside for 529s. Most Yeshiva parents (who want to send their kids to college), on the other hand, probably do not put money into 529s - largely because the cost of the Yeshiva itself is very large and does not leave much money left over for college savings. (Of course, folks like Heshy [who believe that there shouldn't be any Jewish doctors, dentists, lawyers, etc.] have no need of a 529).
I'm not really looking to start a rant on Yeshiva costs here - we all know that Yeshivos do have expenses to meet. What I'm really looking for is advice and ideas. For those of you who do manage to squeeze a couple of extra dollars into the 529s every month, how do you do it. I know, of course, that a automatic withdrawl solution might be best, but, truth be told, things are tight enough as it is now.
Of course, I'm funding the 401(k) that I have. I'm following the old adage "there are programs to help finance your kid's education, but there are no programs to finance your retirement," meaning that the 401(k) comes before the 529. So, for the moment, the kids' college accounts are empty.
So, for those of you who are putting away extra money in a 529 (or similar) plan, please share your success stories. How did you do it while still paying Yeshiva tution for a kid (or multiple kids)? What sacrifices did you make to do it? Are you happy with your investment so far? Do you think you'll meet your investment goals? And are you paying full Yeshiva tuition? :)