Fixed-rate tuition can minimize college-price angst

What’s the greatest anxiety plaguing parents of college-age children? An educated guess? Based on my experience and conversations with students and their parents, it’s not simply how they will manage the cost of a four-year degree; but more specifically, how they will deal with the unpredictability of rapidly rising costs, the Washington Post reports. Let me explain. Every consumer who has financed “big-ticket” purchases like a house or a car knows in advance what the monthly payment will be to amortize the purchase over three, five or more years. The cost of a college education is not so clear-cut, despite the best efforts of college administrators to make the sticker price more transparent. Tools such as net-price calculators help folks to estimate total costs, but in reality, all students and their families generally know is how much the first year will cost. This unpredictability is often the biggest source of angst for students and their parents, as they contemplate ways to find additional money each year to cover increased tuition and fees. Tuition at U.S. universities last year increased, on average, by 8 percent. The percentage increase over four years is much higher due to compounding and additional supplemental student fees. These factors make it exceptionally difficult for families to create an accurate four-year budget for college expenses…

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