New Year’s resolutions are great in theory, but we all know the secret—you have to make it realistic.

Yes, paying for college may seem like a daunting task, but when you start early and contribute often, it alleviates much of the pressure. Small contributions at regular intervals really add up, especially over the course of 18 years.

That’s why we’re encouraging parents and grandparents all across Alabama to make a New Year’s resolution to set up a CollegeCounts 529 account and start saving for your child’s college education.

It’s simple, really.

Opening an account is easy, and you can sign up at your convenience from a home computer. (Just make sure you’ve got your bank account information ready.)

When it comes to deciding on an investment option, you’ll have the choice of age-based options, target portfolios, or individual portfolios. If you’re unsure about what option is best for you and your children, take our Risk Tolerance Questionnaire before making your selection.

Once your account is open and ready to go, it’s time to start saving!

If you’re worried about fluctuating income or a lack of available funds, don’t worry. There’s no minimum or regular contribution required for your CollegeCounts 529 account. So you can pay as much as you want, when you want, with no pressure.

Of course, we recommend you start saving as early and often as possible. If you take a look at our monthly contribution chart, you’ll see that even an investment as low as $50 a month can add up to a significant amount over the course of 18 years. You can even set up an automatic monthly payment so that you won’t have to think about it; or you can take your savings to the next level with a CollegeCounts 529 Rewards Visa® Card and earn 1.529% on your everyday purchases.

For more reasons why it’s never “too early” to start saving for college, check out this recent article.

And don’t forget about gift contributions! With the holiday season coming up and that next birthday just around the corner, asking your friends and family to donate to your child’s CollegeCounts 529 account is the perfect gift.

New Year’s resolutions are meant to make you feel good, right? And if you’ve got a growing family in your home, saving up for your little ones’ college education will give you plenty of warm fuzzies—both now and when that acceptance letter arrives.