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Invest529

Invest529, Virginia's direct-sold college savings plan is available to residents of any state, and offers low fees, diverse investment options and tax benefits for residents.


  • Program typeSavings
  • Inception1999
  • State agencyVirginia529
  • Tax deduction
    Tax deduction for single filers $4,000/yr
    Tax deduction for joint filers $4,000/yr
  • Program Manager
    Virginia529 Board and its CEO
  • Program distributor
    Not applicable.
  • Manager contract termUNLOCK PRO

Ratings & Rankings

Our overall rating for VA residents

This is a program that offers outstanding flexibility, attractive investments, and additional economic benefits (such as generous state tax incentives) that for some people, at least, will provide a substantial boost to their savings. There are few, if any, weaknesses noted in the program.

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.

Savingforcollege.com's 5-Cap Ratings provides an evaluation and comparison of 529 plans, utilizing a formula that examines dozens of factors grouped into the following categories.


3.72out of 5

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.

Eligibility

State residency requirements:

None

Who can be a participant/owner in the program?

U.S. citizens and legal residents at least 18 years old, UGMA/UTMA custodians, and legal entities.

Significant time or age restrictions imposed by the program:

The account must be used within thirty years after the projected date of high school graduation, or within thirty years after account is opened if the beneficiary has already graduated from high school, unless an extension is granted by the program.

Did you know?

  • VA residents can claim a tax deduction for contributions to a VA 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.

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Contributions

Maximum contributions:

Accepts contributions until all account balances in Virginia's 529 plans for the same beneficiary reach $500,000.

Minimum contributions:

The minimum initial contribution is $25. No minimum ongoing contributions are required.

Investment Options

Age-based investment options:

The Age-based Evolving Portfolios option contains 7 portfolios of underlying mutual funds and separately-managed investments. Contributions may be invested in any of the portfolios. The portfolios automatically shift to a more conservative investment allocation over time.View more age-based investment options

Static investment options:

Select among 14 portfolios, including an Invesco stable value option and an FDIC-insured savings option. Eleven of the portfolios invest in Vanguard funds. The Socially Targeted Investment Portfolio invests in the Parnassus Core Equity Fund.View more static investment options

Underlying investments:

Mutual funds and separately-managed accounts from Vanguard, Rothschild Asset Management, American Funds, DFA, Aberdeen, Prudential, Stone Harbor, Morgan Stanley, Templeton, INVESCO, and Parnassus.View a full list of this plan's investment options

Underlying fund allocations:

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Portfolio Fees & Performance Lookup

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Fees & Expenses

Enrollment or application fee:

Effective May 1, 2014, VA529 no longer charges an application fee for this program if application is submitted online.

Account maintenance fee:

None.

Program management fees:

0.10% manager fee.

Expenses of the underlying investments:

Ranges from 0.04% to 0.50% (portfolio weighted average) in the age-based and static multi-fund portfolios, and 0% to 0.66% in the individual-fund portfolios.

Total asset-based expense ratio:

0.10% - 0.76%

Taxes and other Benefits

  • Tax deduction for single filers$4,000/yr
  • Tax deduction for joint filers$4,000/yr

Example

Married filing jointly residents contributing $100/month can expect an additional $0 a year in tax savings.

Program match on contributions:

None.

State tax deduction or credit for contributions:

Contributions to a Virginia 529 plan of up to $4,000 per account per year are deductible in computing Virginia taxable income, with an unlimited carryforward of excess contributions. Contributions are fully deductible in the year of contribution for taxpayers at least 70 years of age. Contributions from a non-owner are deductible by the account owner and not by the non-owner/contributor. Contribution deadline is receipt (not postmark date) by the last business day of the year based on agency calendar.

State tax recapture provisions:

The principal portion of rollovers and nonqualified withdrawals from this plan are included in Virginia taxable income to the extent of prior Virginia 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 expenses

The state conforms with the federal definition of qualified education expenses, which includes expenses for higher education, as well as up to $10,000 per year in tuition in connection with enrollment or attendance at an elementary or secondary public, private, or religious school.

State tax treatment of qualified distributions:

Qualified distributions from Virginia and non-Virginia 529 plans are exempt. Virginia also exempts distributions from a Virginia 529 plan attributable to the beneficiary's death, disability, or receipt of a scholarship.

State tax treatment of rollovers:

Virginia 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:

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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.

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Distributions & Terminations

To whom are distributions made payable:

Account owner, beneficiary, eligible educational institution, or other third party, as directed by account owner.

Account Changes

Policy regarding participant/owner changes:

Accepts requests to transfer account ownership ($10 fee except where owner has died or become disabled).

Documents, Access & Reporting

Does participant have online password-protected access to account?

Yes

Can the complete enrollment process including funding be done online?

Yes, once an account has been accepted, online payments are accepted.

Documents and other services accessible or downloadable on the program's public Web site:

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Contact

Telephone:

1-888-567-0540

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Start saving for your child's future today


Step 1

Click the blue Enroll Now button to the right

Step 2

Complete the online application and make your first deposit

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