The colleges with payment plans offer tuition payment plans which can be a cheaper option than student loans.
That’s not all, it can also help when it comes to overall budgeting for both students and parents.
In this article, we will be looking at colleges with payment plans, as well as other things you need to know about payment plans.
What Is a College Tuition Payment Plan?
College tuition payment plans help families pay tuition bills over time instead of doing that all at once.
Generally, this payment can be done monthly and must be completed before the end of the associated academic term.
How Do College Payment Plans Work?
Schools set a policy for when tuition and fees are due. However, if you can’t make the payment in one lump sum, there are so many schools that offer tuition installment plans.
The payment can be spread out over the course of a semester, quarter, or academic year in monthly installments.
Colleges With Payment Plans; Two Options To Enroll
There are generally two options to enroll:
Option one: Students log into their school’s website and search for a payment plan option in the section of the website that shows their bill.
In that section, they will answer a series of questions about payments, such as who the authorized payer will be; it is usually the student or the parent.
Afterward, the student may then be redirected to finish the process through a third-party installation plan provider. Examples of installation plan providers are Nelnet or Heartland ECSI.
Option two: Students can go directly to the tuition installation plan provider and select their school from the list.
Furthermore, rather than guess who the tuition provider might be, you can contact your school’s financial aid or bursar’s service to find out.
You will typically need to pay an enrolment fee or application fee.
The City University of New York and George Washington University are examples of colleges with enrollment fees, with $25 per semester and $45 per semester as their enrolment fee respectively.
For instance, at George Washington University, enrolment is required for each semester in which you participate in the plan.
Only one plan may be set up for the student per semester.
Payment plan enrollment dates may vary, enrolling later on dates other than the one stipulated by the school may mean a higher enrollment fee.
For instance, at George Washington University in Washington, D.C. the fall 2020 semester enrollment period began on June 11.
If you enrolled after July 21, you would have been required to pay an $80 enrollment fee or $35 more than if you enrolled sooner.
Plus, you’d have had to make a down payment of 25% of estimated semester charges.
How To Make Payments
There are several ways in which payment can be made. Payments can be made through the third-party provider’s website.
You typically can pay through electronic check, credit card or Automated Clearing House(ACH) recurring payments that are set up in advance.
Credit card payments may incur high fees. For instance, at Temple University in Philadelphia, students are charged a 3.5% fee for payments made with credit cards.
There is no charge for paying by Check from a checking account. For every $1,000 payment, you’d be charged $35 more if you paid by credit card.
International students may need to use a wire service if they don’t have a U.S. bank account. Therefore international students must check with their school for accepted payment methods.
Depending on the school, parents may make payments for multiple students through the same payment system. Again, you’ll need to ask your school about its payment policy.
Tuition Payment Plans: What Do They Cover?
It is totally up to colleges to decide what payment plans cover, but generally speaking, they are for tuition and fees.
Meal plans, Room, and Board may have their own payment plans and scheduling options.
Each aspect of college can have its own payment schedule, you have to review each cost separately to ensure that the payment plan applies to them.
Are there other dorm payment options that may save you money?
Will you take out a student loan to pay for them? What meal plan should you choose that lines up with how many meals your student will eat on campus?
What if Your Finances Change?
There are times when students sign up for payment plans and along the line, they can no longer afford one or more payments.
In cases like that such student has to contact the school. If the student or the student’s family, due to unexpected circumstances such as job loss or medical emergency, hit a financial snag, the student should contact the financial aid office and submit special circumstances form to see if such school has more financial aid options available for such a student.
A portion of the tuition you pay from anything other than college savings accounts, grants, or scholarships may be refunded through tax benefits such as the American Opportunity Tax Credit.
Through this credit, up to $2,500 of tuition charged may be returned per dependent student.
The first $2,000 and 25% of the next $2,000 are refundable, provided income requirements are met.
Top Reasons why you should consider tuition payment plans
- You have the ability to make monthly payments rather than having to pay for full semesters or quarters in just one lump sum.
- Neither the parent nor the student will carry debt for years.
- The fee charged for tuition payment plans is often much lower than student loan interest and origination fees on student loans. Origination fees have to be paid even if you pay back the loan the next day.
- There generally isn’t a credit check, unlike with private student loans.
- You can set up a payment plan once through ACH and know you’re all set for paying off tuition.
The disadvantages of College Tuition Payment plans
- At a pricey college, tuition may be too high to pay off by the end of each academic period.
- You may be able to have a portion of your federal student loans forgiven after as little as 20 years under income-driven repayment plans.
- Colleges may charge service fees if families pay by credit card, even if it’s a debit card.
- If paying by credit card and you don’t pay the balance off in full, the interest you pay over time could cost more than student loan interest would have cost.
- In cases where the student’s or family’s financial situation changes, the monthly bill can become untenable.
- Parents who are paying for tuition and fees are taking on the burden and may deplete money that they could have used for their own retirement savings or student loan payments.
Before we look at colleges with payment plans, below are the types of online payment plans:
Types of Online Payment Plans
- Standard Plans
- Deferred Plans
- Tuition Stabilization Plans
- Direct Bill Plans
Typical payment plans primary principle to save students from having to pay the hefty bills all at once at the start of the semester.
Instead of paying all at once at the beginning of the semester, the payments are spread out throughout the course of the semester.
For this sort of plan, an enrollment fee is usually required.
There are colleges that use the term “delayed plan” interchangeably. Other institutions uniquely handle different plans.
In the Deferred plans, students are expected to pay a large down payment at the start of the semester, a second installment halfway through the semester, and the remaining balance at the end of the semester.
In this plan, enrollment fees are frequent and late payments may be charged interest.
Tuition Stabilization Plans
This tuition payment plan technique is designed to keep price increases from ruining your budget.
However, you will need to pay a large sum of money all at once, in order to benefit from this approach.
This tuition payment plan entails paying for four to eight semesters ahead of time to lock in the current tuition rate.
Direct Bill Plans
The direct bill plan involves your employer covering part of your overall tuition costs.
The school’s billing department sends the bill directly to the individual or organization who will be paying it using a direct bill plan.
It is possible that the final payment won’t be due until the middle of the semester.
Example of Colleges with payment plans
There are colleges with payment plans to assist students in paying for education or spreading out costs. Such programs are also available from third-party companies.
The institution you choose may decide to use third-party organizations to manage its official school payment arrangements. Below are the online schools with the best payment plans:
- The Brigham Young University-Idaho
- Indiana University-Bloomington’s
- Great Basin College
- Arizona State University
- The College of Coastal Georgia
- University of North Dakota
- Oklahoma State University
- Thomas Edison State University
- Bellevue University
- University of Florida
The Brigham Young University-Idaho
- $128 per credit for church members
- $256 per credit hour for non-memebers
- Popular degree programs are Nursing and Allied Health Sciences, as well as Business Management
This university is a nonprofit university that is owned and operated by the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
They deliver a wholesome academic, cultural and social environment. It is a home for more than 34,000 students on-campus and 15,000 online learners.
In this institution, you can set up the minimum required payment plan which is 10% of the total balance by contacting the financial service department of the school before enrollment.
- Tuition: $11, 332 for Indiana residents and $38, 352 for nonresidents
- Popular degree programs are Allied Health Sciences and Applied Sciences
If you are looking for a regionally accredited online college with payment plans, which are affordable at the same time, then Indiana University’s online program may be up for you to consider.
They are one of the online colleges with payment plans that offer 149 online programs that allow students to earn credits even while on break.
In this institution, you can pay your fees in up to four installments, paying only the down payment and the enrollment fee initially.
Great Basin College
- $3,975 for Nevada residents and $10,199 for out-of-state students, though the cost may vary depending on the cost division.
- Popular programs include Nursing and Health Sciences, as well as Applied Sciences
This is one of the public colleges with payment plans that offer quality and one of the most affordable associates and baccalaureate instructions in various career and technical education areas.
Having over 4,000 enrollees annually across the country, they are a popular pioneer when it comes to distance learning and online education.
If you qualify, you can apply for a grant or federal parent loan, which would allow you to arrange for an affordable payment plan with the school.
Arizona State University
- Tuition: $12, 828 for Arizona residents and $6, 105 for out-of-state students.
- Popular degree programs are under Business and Allied Health
This is one of the colleges with payment plans that deliver quality education and distance learning modalities across the country.
ASU Online offers a comprehensive package, making use of apps to keep students and their professors connected.
They offer career workshops online, thereby allowing students to get the most out of distance learning.
Students can equally receive financial aid and scholarship grants according to their qualifications.
They have a payment plan and are usually charged over several months for expenses.
The College of Coastal Georgia
- $107 for in-state students and $395 for out-of-state students per credit hour
- Popular degree programs are Workforce Management, Nursing, and Public Administration
This institution has opened its online portals, offering bachelor’s degrees with a small student-to-teacher ratio of fewer than ten students to one instructor.
Their online program is fully accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
They offer a convenient payment plan for their students such that students can easily manage their payment portal.
University of North Dakota
- Per credit, the cost starts at $458-4758
- Popular programs are Communication and Media Studies and Psychology
This institution is ranked a top value institution in the Northwest by Edsmart.com. The University of North Dakota is one of the colleges with payment plans that offer a fully accredited online education platform by the Higher Learning Commission.
The school also has a rolling application deadline, this gives more flexibility and less stress about deadlines.
They offer semester-based classes which run according to the school’s academic calendar.
Financial aid up to or more than $11,000 can be received by qualified students each year.
Oklahoma State University
- $205.30 -$697.90 per credit hour
- Popular Programs are under Engineering, Business, and Education
This is one of the colleges with payment plans that bring quality programs at a very affordable price point.
They have virtual assistance departments in areas such as math and writing.
Their career service departments help graduates in landing a job with few years after graduation. This institution gives students the opportunity to make four monthly payments minus finance charges.
Thomas Edison State University
This is one of the colleges with payment plans with an array of programs and certificates.
They boast of 13 associate degree programs, 33 bachelor’s degrees, 15 master’s, and two doctorate tracks.
Apart from their full-time, flat-rate tuition, TESU offers university payment plans which allow students to schedule charges based on their budget.
- $610 per credit hour
- Popular programs include Business Administration, Commerce, and Social Sciences
This University has offered an array of online bachelor’s programs that is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
They offer over 75 career-centered degrees and certifications.
You can choose to further your educational path under the guidance of an experienced faculty member.
They offer differed payment plans under the employee tuition assistance programs via direct bill and deferral options.
University of Florida
- $129.18 per credit hour
- $552.62 per credit hour
- Popular Programs include Business Administration and Management
This is a leading estate research university with a significant on-campus enrollment rate of more than 50,000 students. The university extends its services online and currently, they cater to over 3,000 online learners.
You can choose from their list of over 35 undergraduate programs across respected departments.
Students are eligible for financial aid programs and flexible payment plans depending on their qualifications.
See the complete list of 246 colleges with payment plans as listed by mycollegeguide.org
Tuition installment plans are a low-cost option for families who can afford tuition in monthly payments, but however, cannot afford tuition in monthly payments, but who don’t have the money in their budget to pay for tuition all at once.
The cost is higher if the families use credit cards while making payments.
Furthermore, it is very important that families consider their financial picture, including their retirement plans and savings of parents while choosing a college tuition installment plan over student loans.
What are your thoughts about these colleges with tuition payment plans?
- 23 best application fee waiver colleges in Canada
- Best 25 Canadian Universities with low tuition fees for international students