Saving for college can be tough. There is, however, some good news for parents in Massachusetts, and it begins with “BabySteps.”
In December 2019, Massachusetts State Treasurer Deborah Goldberg announced the launch of a new program – called the Baby Steps Savings Plan – to help families get a jumpstart on their children’s college savings. Starting in January 2020, any child born or adopted may enroll in the program and receive a $50 deposit to their college savings account. It may not seem like much, but these “baby steps” are a great way to help get the savings going in your family.
This education savings program is the first of its kind in the state of Massachusetts. The goal of the program is to boost college attendance and graduation rates for Massachusetts students, as well as increase the number of families saving ahead for higher education.
A college savings plan is a great way to ensure that your child has a bright future. Research shows that children of low- and moderate- income families who save for college are three times more likely to attend college, and four times more likely to graduate than those who do not save. How exactly does the new BabySteps Savings Plan work in Massachusetts? Read on, as we explore who is eligible and what it means for adoptive families in the Bay State.
BabySteps is a statewide, seeded college savings account program designed to help families get a kickstart on their children’s future. It takes effect as soon as families enroll. In order to be deemed eligible for the savings program, a child needs to be:
- A Massachusetts resident
- Born or adopted on or after January 1, 2020
- Named the beneficiary on a U. Fund 529 College Investing Plan account, within one year of the birth or adoption date
Parents of children who are adopted must complete this Adoption Verification Form.
The Benefits of BabySteps for Adoptive Families
In the grand scheme of things, $50 may not seem like a whole lot of money – especially when you consider the hefty price tag that comes with a college degree. This savings plan, however, highlights the importance of education right from the start of your adopted child’s life. The BabySteps Savings Plan helps build a culture centered on savings for the future, and encourages responsible budget management for a child’s life. Savings plans within the first year of life also positively impacts several key areas of a child’s development, including academic performance and social-emotional growth.
This 529 Plan is a flexible, tax-advantaged investment account specifically designed to help families save for higher education. This early boost gives adoptive families in Massachusetts the support and jumping off point they need to begin the path toward a great education for their little ones.
Family life is incredibly rewarding, but it certainly has its challenges. Any experienced parent can tell you, raising children is expensive. In fact, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the cost of raising a child today is over $233,610 – not including college tuition. That is one child. Families with multiple children can expect to tack on that same amount for each additional child in the house. If you spend nearly a quarter of a million dollars – per child, from adoption to age 18 – where do you begin to pay for college?
When it comes to postsecondary education, BabySteps Saving Plan Massachusetts is a great way to get your family’s financial future on the right track. If you are an adoptive family who has just welcomed a little one this year – or you are planning to adopt a child in 2020 or beyond – be sure to enroll in the BabySteps College Savings Plan. This little boost can help get you started as you plan for a successful life for your bundle of joy.
Adoptions With Love can also help you with many tools and resources in the adoption journey. We work with hopeful adoptive parents in Massachusetts, and expectant/birth mothers nationwide. Reach out to us anytime for answers to your most pressing adoption questions. Call us at 617-964-4357, or visit https://www.babystepssavingsplan.org/ to learn more about the BabySteps program.