Can You Use A Roth IRA To Save For College?

Yes, with some caveats. Owners of a Roth IRA need to have income before they can contribute to a Roth IRA, so your kids won’t be able to own their accounts. But if you as a parent or grandparent have income below $122,000 and are single ($193,000 married filing jointly), you can name anyone as a beneficiary.

You can use proceeds from the Roth IRA to pay for qualified educational expenses, but it has to be for an eligible member of your family, and the money must be paid directly to an eligible educational institution.

The tax treatment of withdrawals for this purpose from a Roth IRA differs from that of a 529 account, so be sure to consult with an accountant or tax advisor before making any moves.