School Costs

School Costs

Sneak Attack: College Fees

college-feesAccording to The College Board, the average public university charges in-state students an average of $7,020 annually, and out-of-state students an average of $11,528 for four-year programs. But colleges also charge other fees which you may not have budgeted for, beyond tuition. Here are eight common fees that you might not expect, with averages costs from Smart Money.

1. Freshman Orientation: $100

During freshman orientation, colleges need to maintain dorm facilities, pay speakers and security, plus host events and parties. They pass these costs along to students. Boston University charges $215 per student, and siblings who wish to attend must pay an additional $50. Iowa State University charges $190 for freshman orientation.

2. Health Care: $30 to $2,400

Many colleges require students to have some form of health coverage. If they are covered by their parents’ plans, then they will not need to purchase a plan from the college. Health coverage options vary from school to school. At Ohio State, the premium is $2,172 per year, although many schools charge much less.

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Expendable Expenses at College

expendable-expensesTuition is high enough as it is, so why not cut back on unnecessary living expenses? Here are ten things you don’t really need while staying in a dorm.

1. A Credit Card
Establishing good credit is important for a young person, but you don’t really need to add on the debt while living at college. On average, a college freshman with a credit card amassed $2000 in debt, reports Kiplinger. Instead, get a debit card that won’t let you spend money you don’t have.

2. High Bank Fees
It can cost about $5 every time you withdraw money from an out-of-network ATM. Consider opening a bank account with branches near campus or an online checking account that doesn’t charge ATM fees or refunds ATM surcharges from other banks.

3. Redundant Health Insurance
If you’re on family health coverage, you don’t need to buy additional campus health coverage. It’s wise to do some comparative shopping, but watch out for low coverage maximums and high co-pay fees. Staying on your parent’s insurance may mean extra paperwork to prove that a young adult is a full-time student, but in many cases it’s worth it.
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4 Reasons your textbooks will cost less soon

Textbook prices, which have nearly tripled in the past 20 years, may finally start to decline thanks to some new laws, technology, and upstart companies. Undergraduates who take advantage of the new alternatives could easily slash their textbook costs in half this coming academic year. That means the typical student could save more than $300. “We’re making progress,” says Nicole Allen, who heads the affordable textbook drive for the Student Public Interest Research Groups. “Things are changing for the better.”

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