I regularly obsess over no small amount of things. Whether my kid is breathing regularly or pooping correctly, sure. But I’m also meticulous about planning and saving. As in, for the future and money.
Before I had my first daughter I read about Upromise, which is a website designed to make the money you spend every day pay you back with money for your child’s college education.
In the 3 years since my older daughter was born, I’ve saved $542.02 for her college education through Upromise by doing absolutely nothing other than spending money I was already spending.
It’s so incredibly simple (and free!) — all parents need to sign up their babies for a Upromise account today.
The way it works is you first need sign your baby up for a 529 college savings plan (all you need is a social security number for your baby — and many states have specialized plans, which in turn you might be able to use as an annual tax deduction) and then register at Upromise.com.
You link one or all of your credit cards to the account, as well as any gas credit cards you have, and even your supermarket savings card. When you make eligible purchase anywhere, participating realtors will take 1 15 percent of what you spend and put it back into your Upromise account, and each quarter Upromise turns around and puts that money into your child’s 529 college savings account. The money is all yours — to keep. No matter what.
It’s totally free money. It doesn’t interfere with any special airline mileage or other special credit cards. What you earn is in addition to any other credit card incentives you have.
You can also have anyone — grandparents, friends, whoever — link their credit cards to your Upromise account, so when they make applicable purchases the money will go directly into your child’s 529 account.
Once you start exploring the Upromise site, you’ll finds there are hundreds and hundreds of affiliated retailers, and even more ways to save and link to your account and accumulate real money for your children’s college education.
There’s even an application you can install on your computer’s browser that will tell you each time you do a Google search which retailers are affiliated with Upromise (for instance, Expedia is linked to Upromise, so if the price for a flight is the same there as, say, on United Airline’s website, I will book my travel on Expedia so 1 percent of the cost of my trip will go into my daughter’s 529 account). Sometimes the savings amounts to pennies, sometimes is tens of dollars. Either way, it adds up. Start now and you could be looking at thousands of dollars by the time your baby heads off to college.
There really is such thing as free money. If saving for your baby’s college education is something that’s on your mind, this is something you can do now without taking extra money out of your pocket. It’s the easiest free money you’ll ever earn.