Enter information about college expenses
1. Fill in the requested information about your college expense, clicking Next as necessary.
2. Click a link below for more information.
- College expenses
Choose the expenses you plan to pay for.
- Additional cost factors
These estimates assume the student is enrolled for approximately 30 semester hours or 45 quarter hours. If you expect a child to attend more than one college (for example, a community college, or post-graduate school) with separate funding, you'll need to enter a separate expense for each college. (This might be true if your child intends to become a doctor or attorney, or to enter another profession requiring several years of schooling, possibly at different colleges.)
If you need more help estimating how much your child's college education will cost, see Think about college expenses.
- Total costs
Estimate how these college costs will be paid for, including the amount of for financial aid, loans, student contributions, and cash gifts that will be received to fund this college expense.
If you only know how much you can contribute for one year, average the amount over the time the child is attending college.
For example, if you currently have $5,000 in savings to contribute and your child will be in college for 4 years, enter $1250 as an annual amount, even if the child will use the $5000 all in the first year.
If you need more help estimating how much financial aid you can expect, see Finance your child's college education.
- College cost inflation rate
Enter the rate at which you expect college costs to grow. Quicken uses the general inflation rate plus 2 percent as the default college inflation rate, because the college inflation rate is traditionally slightly higher than the general inflation rate. This rate is independent of the rate you set in the Estimated Inflation dialog.
- Choose accounts
Click to specify the account or accounts you want to use to pay for college expenses not covered by financial aid.
If you just want to fund college expenses from whatever funds are available at the time, make sure General expenses is selected. You can also enter any amount that you've already put away in savings for college expenses.
If you choose a specific account to fund these college expenses, you can view the status of your college plan in the Event Status snapshot in the Planning tab. If you choose general expenses to fund these college expenses, the Event Status snapshot won't display the status of your college plan.
The Monthly Savings Target snapshot in the Planning tab shows you what you need to save per month to fund these college expenses.
- The Retirement and College Planners use a start date of January 1 for the college year
This is a conservative estimate of when spending for that year begins. Even if the student begins college in mid-year, all Planner calculations are based on a start date of January 1.
- If you exclude dependents in the Retirement Planner...
If you exclude dependents in the Retirement Planner, these dependents will not be visible in the College Planner. Be sure you use the College Planner before removing any dependents from the Retirement Planner (just as you probably expect to fund your children's college before you retire in real life).
- Currency tips
The Lifetime Planner support only U.S. currency. If you use non-U.S. currency accounts, their balances will be converted to U.S. dollars for planning. All currency amounts that you enter in the Lifetime Planner should be in U.S. dollars. If you have a multicurrency Quicken file and are not using U.S. dollars as your home currency, you will need to have U.S. dollars in your currency list with a current exchange rate.