Question: I'm researching 529 college-savings plans for my kids and am concerned that by choosing a state's plan I'm committing to sending them there for school. Is this correct?
Answer: That's not so, and it's one of the many misconceptions some have about 529 plans even as the plans continue to increase in popularity. Assets in 529 plans have expanded phenomenally during the past decade as the price of higher education has risen and investment companies have promoted the plans as tax-advantaged savings vehicles for college. In 2001, 529 plans held just $13.6 billion in assets, according to data from the College Savings Plans Network. Through the first six months of 2012, that amount had increased to $179 billion, with 11 million accounts open nationwide.