General InformationDownload PDF Report
Direct Portfolio College Savings Plan
The team of Ascensus Broker Dealer Services, Inc. and The Vanguard Group manages the Colorado Direct Portfolio College Savings Plan. It features age-based and static portfolio options utilizing Vanguard mutual funds. Accounts can be linked to the Upromise rewards service.
- Program typeSavings
- State agencyCollegeInvest, a division of the Colorado Department of Higher Education
- Tax deduction
- Program ManagerAscensus Broker Dealer Services, Inc. and The Vanguard Group, Inc.
- Program distributorVanguard Marketing Corporation
- Manager contract termUNLOCK PRO
Ratings & Rankings
Our overall rating for non-residents
This is an excellent program with many benefits for the participant and positive investment attributes. If it has any significant weaknesses then it also has some particularly good things to recommend it.
Each plan's performance score is developed directly from Savingforcollege.com's Quarterly 529 Performance Rankings. A 529 savings plan must have at least one year of performance history before they will be assigned a 5-cap rating. For those plans that are not part of our quarterly performance rankings, such as plans offering a single set of bank-based investment options, we assign a performance score by evaluating the returns currently available on similar types of investments outside of 529 plans.
State residency requirements:None
Who can be a participant/owner in the program?U.S. citizens or resident aliens, trusts, 501(c)(3) organizations, and local governments.
Significant time or age restrictions imposed by the program:None
Did you know?
CO residents can claim a tax deduction for contributions to a CO 529 plan.
Contributions are deductible in computing state taxable income
529 plan contributions grow tax-free.
Withdrawals are tax-free when used to pay for qualified higher education expenses.
You can contribute as much as you want, as often as you want.
The key is to get started. Enroll today by completing a quick form online.
Maximum contributions:Accepts contributions until all account balances in Colorado's 529 plans for the same beneficiary reach $400,000.
Minimum contributions:The minimum initial contribution is $25, and the minimum subsequent contribution is $15.
Age-based investment options:The Age-Based option is offered in 3 different risk levels (Aggressive, Moderate, and Conservative) each containing 9 portfolios of underlying mutual funds. Contributions are placed into the portfolio corresponding to the risk level selected and the number of years to expected enrollment, and later reassigned to more conservative portfolios as the beneficiary approaches college age.View more age-based investment options
Static investment options:Select among 5 multi-fund portfolios with varying risk tolerances and 3 individual-fund portfolios.View more static investment options
Underlying investments:Vanguard mutual funds.View a full list of this plan's investment options
Underlying fund allocations:UNLOCK PRO
Portfolio Fees & Performance LookupUNLOCK PRO
Fees & Expenses
Enrollment or application fee:None.
Account maintenance fee:$20 for accounts with less than $10,000, waived for Colorado residents and for accounts opting to receive all documents electronically.
Program management fees:0.34% manager fee; fee includes underlying fund expenses and a 0.06% fee to the state.
CollegeInvest may charge an administrative fee of up to 0.10%. CollegeInvest will periodically reevaluate the 0.06% administrative fee rate and raise or lower it not to exceed 0.10%.
Expenses of the underlying investments:Not applicable, included in the program management fee.
Total asset-based expense ratio:0.34%
Taxes and other Benefits
- Tax deduction for single filersNo limit
- Tax deduction for joint filersNo limit
Married filing jointly residents contributing $100/month can expect an additional $0 a year in tax savings.
Program match on contributions:The Matching Grant Program provides a dollar-for-dollar match of up to $400 in contributions for lower- to middle-income Colorado residents to accounts with an eligible beneficiary (a dependent under age 13 at the time of initial application). Applications are accepted each year between September 1 and December 31. The match can extend for a maximum five years. Matching grants for future years are subject to continued funding by the sponsor. The CollegeInvest 529 Scholarship provides a $2,000 scholarship to any full-time student who is a Colorado resident, has maintained or has had a parent/guardian maintain a CollegeInvest account for at least two years, and can substantiate an expected family contribution (EFC) between $5,000 and $25,000. The scholarship is renewable each year up to a total of four years or $8,000. Applications are accepted January 1 through May 15.
State tax deduction or credit for contributions:Contributions to a Colorado 529 plan, to the extent of the contributor's Colorado taxable income, are deductible in computing Colorado taxable income. Rollover contributions are not eligible for the deduction.
The Working Families College Savings Act offers a Colorado tax credit for employers who make contributions to CollegeInvest savings plans owned by their employees. The available tax credit is 20% of the amount contributed to a CollegeInvest 529 account, up to $2,500 per employee.
State tax recapture provisions:The principal portion of rollovers and nonqualified withdrawals from this plan are included in Colorado taxable income to the extent of prior Colorado tax deductions. Nonqualified withdrawals for this purpose do not include withdrawals made as the result of the beneficiary's death or disability or withdrawals made on account of the beneficiary's receipt of a scholarship.
State definition of qualified expensesThe state's definition of qualified education expenses currently includes expenses for attendance at an institution of higher education as defined by the Internal Revenue Code and its regulations addressing qualified state tuition programs. This does not include tuition for elementary or secondary education.
State tax treatment of qualified distributions:Qualified distributions from Colorado and non-Colorado 529 plans are exempt.
State tax treatment of rollovers:Colorado follows federal tax-free treatment except that outbound rollovers are subject to the recapture of prior state tax deductions.
Does the sponsoring state exclude the value of an account for state financial aid purposes?No
Does participation in the program provide beneficiaries with any advantages in qualifying for resident tuition status at state institutions?No
Does the program have a formal agreement with a rewards program or outside scholarship program?Yes, the Upromise Rewards program can be linked to any 529 college savings plan. Upromise Rewards is free to join and offers members cash back for college.
Statutory protection of an account from creditors:UNLOCK PRO
Did you know?
Residents are not limited to investing in their own state's 529 plan.
Another state may offer a plan that performs better and has lower fees.
The 529 plan chosen does not affect which state the student enrolls in.
You can live in New York, open a plan from Nevada and send a student to college in Florida.
The best way to maximize your college savings?
Start early and save often. You can get started today with easy online enrollment.