How to start saving for college in high school

So, you want to save for college now that you’re in high school? That’s great news! There are tons of ways to prepare for the cost of college before you graduate. 

Let’s take a look at some steps you can take to start saving and setting yourself up for scholarships, grants, and FAFSA®.

high school students in class

💡 The Frank Takeaways:


Open a Savings Account

A  great first step to saving is to open a savings account with your local bank. It will encourage you to make deposits and stick to your goals. 

Did you File FAFSA® Yet

Many banks have student savings accounts with low fees and perks. Take your parents with you and head to the bank to start saving now. 

Start making some money

Whether you’re artistic or have some time on your hands for a part-time job, finding unique ways to make money can help you start saving. Try selling some art, mowing lawns, or even running errands for the elderly in your neighborhood. 

While your first priority should always be school, if you can take on small jobs to help you save, it will be a huge help in the future. 

Plus, it never hurts to have a little something on your resume from high school.

Take AP Classes

It may not seem like a step towards saving, but taking AP classes is a huge help towards your first few years of college. 

When you pass an AP exam, you get credit for the General Education version of that class and it automatically transfers over when you enter college. 


Say you take three AP classes and pass the exams while in high school — that’s THREE classes you won’t have to pay for come your first year. Depending on how much credits cost at your school of choice, that could amount to thousands in savings. 

Save Not Spend

We all love to have nice things, but when you’re considering buying the next video game or smartphone, remember how that many could save you from taking out too much debt later. 

Cut back on your spending where you can and put that money in your new savings account instead. You’ll be surprised how much you’ll save when you decide it’s not worth spending it. 

Saving money is never easy — especially when there’s so much temptation out there. Just remind yourself you’re doing it for the future, and how happy you’ll be if you’re not drowning in student loan debt come college graduation.