For those of you who haven’t signed up for Upromise…you need to do it NOW! That is an order! MOM, that means YOU!!!! It is a FREE program that earns you extra money for your child’s college, grandchild’s college, or anyone that you choose – even yourself if you are pursuing a college/technical degree!
Here’s how it works:
- Sign up by clicking on my link below on in my sidebar or the banners in this blog entry. (You will also be entered to win a $100,000 College Sweepstakes!)
- Enter your grocery or drugstore loyalty cards (Marsh Fresh Idea Card, Kroger Plus Card, CVS Extra Care Card, etc.)
- You then start automatically accumulating up to 8% on participating items you buy at these stores and you can do nothing else or you can do some of the other things to earn more money.
Other ways to earn money through Upromise:
- Shop online through Upromise using their links. Each merchant (they have 550 of them!) gives back a certain % to your account. If you are buying things online anyway, why not earn an extra little bit of cash! (1% to 25%)
- Plan a trip. You can earn rewards through booking your travel.
- Citibank Upromise Credit Card. You will earn a certain % of your spending each month. (up to 10%)
- Buy a car. I recently received a flyer in the mail if you buy a VW minivan, you will earn $1,500 for your account.
- Enter your debit & credit card information to get rewards on items you purchase at places like Eddie Bauer, Sears, etc.
- There are also many other ways to earn extra money for your Upromise account. See their website for details
View a list of all the participating companies HERE.
How do you get your money?
You can set up a Upromise 529 College Fund through their website. You can then automatically link your Upromise account to your College Savings Fund and it will automatically put your earnings into that account when you have reached the threshold amount. (It is probably around $25.)
There are many nice things about 529 accounts. I have one set up for my children and that is where all their birthday and holiday money goes. I also put a little extra in it every month. The money in these accounts can be used for ANY child. You set it up in one child’s name and they don’t go to college, you can transfer it to another child with no penalty. You can use it for any college costs (college, trade school, anything accrediated.).
I will also say, my children’s 539 plan has give me a better return than my own retirement fund!
This website, Saving for College, has a WEALTH of information about 529 plans and how they can vary by state. Some states, like Indiana, will give a state tax deduction (20% on up to $5,000/year) if you contribute to the Indiana 529 plan, which is managed by JP Morgan. I should note that we have (2) 529 accounts set up. I have the Indiana 529 plan, which I’ve had FOREVER and giving me great returns. You can link the type of funds by the age level of your children so my youngest children are buying portfolios that are very aggressive. If you have older children, most likely they will set you up with more conservative funds. I also set up one through Upromise so that our Upromise account & 529 account could automatically be linked. You do not get a tax deduction on the Upromise Savings. Obviously, you should contact your own financial advisor to get the latest and greatest information!
A little more information straight from the Upromise Site:
what’s the catch? there is none.
Here’s how it works:
- Participating companies reward members who make eligible purchases of their products.
- Upromise receives revenue from these companies to help with operations and serve members.
- By joining, you’ll take advantage of a network of companies committed to helping members save for college.
- Our mission is to help make higher education affordable for all families.
No excuses & no catches – everyone better be signing up! :)