Grad Save - WSVN-TV - 7NEWS Miami Ft. Lauderdale News, Weather, Deco

Grad Save

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WSVN -- Annette Conde and friends are enjoying the carefree toddler years-

But they're also planning for the future. That's why they've signed their kids up for GradSave, a new online college savings registry.

Annette Cordero: "It's a great way for family and friends to give money for college instead of giving him a ton of stuff that the kids don't really need."

Marcos Cordero of GradSave said the earlier parents start saving for college, the better.

Marcos Cordero: "Financial advisors and experts agree that probably the most important thing that you can do with skyrocketing college costs is starting as early as possible. That may be $10 a month or $25 a month but the important thing is to get started."

GradSave accounts are free. Just register online and create a profile. Parents control who sees it.

Marcos Cordero: "They have a dedicated URL for their child's profile that we make it very easy to share though social networks and e-mail to their relatives."

Friends and family donate online for holidays, birthdays or in monthly installments. The money stays in the child's GradSave account until parents are ready to transfer it to their college savings fund, whether it's a Florida Pre-Paid account or a 529 Plan.

Lucas will be a freshman in 2028. Thanks to gifts from his family, he already has $2,000 in his GradSave account.

Annette Cordero: "People have been really excited about donating money and they love the convenience. They don't have to go out and shop for something, they just log onto the website and go straight to his profile and donate the money."

Moms like Jackie know college will be here before they know it.

Jackie Rasco: "Fast forward 18 years from now, even less actually we're going to see the benefits of something we had planned years before."

These moms say forget the toys this holiday season, they want the gift of education. When it's time to start paying for college, all withdrawals for school expenses are tax free.

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