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Tuition Track Portfolio - Available Early 2021

Introducing the Tuition Track Portfolio

Keep your family on track to cover the average cost of tuition, plus other qualified higher education expenses.

Tuition costs rise nearly every year. Take the guesswork out of your savings with Invest529’s new portfolio option, exclusively for Virginia residents - the Tuition Track.

Tuition Track Portfolio Overview

Topics include:

  • How Tuition Track works
  • How to purchase units/ what units cover
  • Differences from traditional Invest529 portfolios

Invest in a Portfolio Option that Keeps Pace with Tuition Growth

Tuition Growth

graphic showing tuition grew by 75% from 2010 to 2020

College tuition has grown an average of 6% a year for more than a decade. With the Tuition Track Portfolio, your savings will grow at the same rate as Average Tuition1 at Virginia public colleges and universities - without the risk of stock market volatility.

The Tuition Track Portfolio is a Principal Protected Portfolio, which means it is designed to protect against losses to the original amount you’ve invested, making it generally a more stable investment than some other portfolios.

Every Year, the Average Tuition at Virginia Public Colleges and Universities will be Calculated

Current Average Tuition

$13,636 per year

The Average Tuition is divided into 100 units to determine the cost of an individual unit. A unit equals 1/100th of an academic year. The cost to purchase a unit and the value of the units you've already purchased will shift annually to match Average Tuition costs.

Average Tuition Units

$13,636 ÷ 100 = $136.36/unit

You choose how many units to purchase and how often to buy them. As with other Invest529 portfolios, you can make a one-time contribution, which purchases unit increments with each dollar invested. Or, you can put your purchases on autopilot by setting up automated monthly contributions from your checking or savings account.

Chart illustrates Tuition and Fees 2019-2020. Tuition and Average Tuition amounts are for illustration purposes only. Source: State Council of Higher Education for Virginia.

Using Your Units

When it’s time to use your units, your student will receive one year of the current Average Tuition for every 100 units previously purchased, regardless of how much tuition rates have grown.

More than half of Virginia’s college and universities cost less than 100 units a year. To cover the costs of attending a higher-than-average priced college, or to cover costs beyond tuition, consider purchasing more than 100 units for each year.

grapic depicting 100 units equals 1 year of average tuition

School A

If your school charges more than Average Tuition, you still will have more to pay to cover the tuition bill.

At School A, you would need to use 183.3 units of Average Tuition (183.3 units * $136.36/unit = $25,000) to cover your annual tuition.

School B

Some lower priced schools, or many community colleges, may charge less than Average Tuition. In that case, your surplus units could be used toward room and board, meals, books, or any other qualified higher education expense.

If you only wanted to cover tuition for one year at School B, you would need to use 80.7 units of Average Tuition (80.7 units * $136.63/unit = $11,000).

Tuition Track Calculator

Use the Tuition Track Calculator to figure out how many units you can buy based on your budget.

What Tuition Track Covers

Use your savings at Virginia public, private, or even out-of-state colleges - you’ll receive the same payout wherever your student goes!

Your payout is based on the average cost of tuition at public colleges and universities in Virginia, but Tuition Track units can be used at both public and private institutes of higher learning anywhere in the country - and beyond! You can use them to pay for more than just tuition - books, meal plans and all other qualified educational expenses can be covered by Tuition Track units.

Virginia Colleges
Non-Virginia Colleges
International Schools
Room and Board
Qualified Higher Education Expenses

How Tuition Track Portfolio Differs from Other Invest529 Portfolios

Just like other Invest529 portfolios, Tuition Track Portfolio offers tax-free growth and is eligible for the $4,000 Virginia state tax deduction.

There are a few differences to consider before investing:

Units can be purchased up until June 30 of the beneficiary’s senior year of high school. After that, any additional savings will have to be invested in another Invest529 portfolio.

The cost to purchase a Tuition Track unit and the value of your previously purchased units adjusted annually on July 1, rather than the cost shifting based on the stock market’s daily Net Asset Value (NAV).

Units are eligible for use when the beneficiary turns 18 or begins taking eligible post-secondary courses, whichever comes first. *

At the time of opening a Tuition Track Portfolio, either the Account Owner or the Beneficiary must be a Virginia resident.

Account owners can purchase up to a maximum of 1,000 units per beneficiary.

Units must be held for a minimum of three years before they can be redeemed at current Average Tuition. Any units redeemed before three years will be returned at purchase price.

* If you choose to redeem your units earlier than age 18 and you are not using them for eligible post-secondary courses, you’ll receive the purchase price plus a limited rate, assuming the units have been held for three or more years.

Tuition Track Portfolio FAQs

Yes, account owners can transfer units to younger and older siblings, and relatives within the same generation who are eligible at the time of purchase. The first payout date will change as the beneficiary changes.

Yes, Account owners can purchase whole or fractional units with a one-time payment or by establishing a recurring payment. There is no minimum purchase requirement, however new account owners will need to open an account with a minimum contribution of $10 before purchasing units. Account owners cannot purchase more than 1,000 units for each unique beneficiary.

See all FAQs

Explore Your Savings Options

Tuition Track Calculator

Use the Tuition Track Calculator to figure out how many units you can buy based on your budget.

Online Webinars & Tutorials

View a live or previously recorded webinar to learn more about Invest529.

View Portfolio Performance

Explore Invest529's diverse portfolios in-depth and review the performance over time.

1 Average tuition is defined as the average of Tuition based on the number of full-time equivalent undergraduate in-state students enrolled at each applicable public institution. Tuition at each Virginia public 4-year institution is multiplied by that institution's enrollment percentage of full-time equivalent undergraduate in-state students and then summed to reach the academic year's weighted average tuition.