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How to Choose the Right Tuition Payment Plan

Scholarships, grants and other forms of student aid are not always enough to cover the cost of college. Fortunately, many schools allow students to choose from various tuition payment plans. These plans can be a good option for people who want to avoid borrowing for education. Learn more about different types of tuition payment plans here.

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Steps to Choose a Tuition Payment Plan

1. Research the plans that are available to you: Talk to your school about the plans they provide or visit with financial institutions that offer tuition payment plans to students.

2. Assess your financial situation: Before you make a decision, you'll want to know how much you can afford to pay at any time.

3. Weigh the pros and cons of each plan: Is your plan interest free? Are there any fees associated with your plan? Knowing these facts ahead of time can help you narrow down your choices.

4. Determine which plan fits the best with your financial situation: Once you have all the information, you can make a decision about which plan will work the best for you. If you have questions or concerns, you might want to talk to a financial adviser or counselor who can offer some suggestions.

Tuition Payment Plan Options

Lump Sum Plans

The lump sum plan is the most basic tuition payment plan. The school sends you a bill for tuition, fees and other expenses for the entire year and you pay them with one lump sum payment. This plan is usually only practical for people who have extra cash set aside for college.

Term Plans

Term plans allow students to pay by quarter or semester rather than paying for an entire year's worth of tuition. Bills are typically due at the beginning or near the beginning of each new term.

Monthly Plans

Monthly payment plans split tuition costs into 12 equal monthly payments. Plans are typically interest free but may require a small enrollment cost that is usually less than $100. This plan is the most practical for families on a budget and students who are working to put themselves through school.

Outside Plans

There are also a number of outside companies that will help students and families avoid the need to come up with large lump sums of money to pay college tuition. These companies offer their own tuition payment plans for a fee. Many of them are interest free and allow students to choose from various payment options.

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