Author: Deborah Goodkin, Managing Director, Savings Plans, First National Bank

Chances are, if you’re planning for a child’s educational future, you have a lot of questions about college savings. As both a parent and a director of a college savings plan, I am here to address a number of common inquiries about college expenses and how to use your NEST 529 College Savings Plan.

Q: What are the benefits of opening up a NEST 529 Plan?

A: Beyond helping secure your child’s academic and financial future, there are a number of tax advantages to opening a NEST 529 Plan—regardless of your income or how much you invest, as long as the funds are used for qualified expenses like tuition, books and supplies. Nebraska account owners are offered significant tax advantages for investing in a NEST 529 Plan, including an annual income tax deduction. If you don’t live in Nebraska, you may still be able to take advantage of the state tax benefits. Learn more about these advantages on our website.

Q: Who am I allowed to invest for?

A: One of the great things about a NEST 529 Plan is that you can invest for anyone. Whether you’d like to save for a child, grandchild, niece, nephew, friend—or even yourself--a NEST 529 Plan allows you to invest for a beneficiary of your choice, as long as they use the funds for qualified higher education expenses.

Q: Does my NEST 529 Plan give me the flexibility to make changes to my account?

A: A NEST 529 Plan is extremely flexible, allowing you to change beneficiaries at any time, reallocate unused funds to other members of the family, and stay in control 24-hours a day by managing the account easily online though our secure website.

Q: What other savings opportunities does the NEST 529 Plan provide?

A: We regularly offer contests, bonuses and giveaways to help you grow your account—ultimately adding up to greater savings for children dreaming of a college education. For more information, check out our current list of opportunities.

Q: Can my NEST 529 Plan be used at a foreign college?

A: With a NEST 529 Plan, your funds can be used at virtually any type of accredited two-year or four-year school including a public or private university, community college or vocational or trade school as well as for graduate schools in the United States and abroad. Visit Saving for College’s Federal School Code Lookup for a full list of eligible institutions. 

Still have questions about the NEST 529 College Savings Plan? Contact us at (888) 993-3746 or