Missouri’s college savings plan has made some adjustment, which should save you money and help that investment grow to pay college expenses.

State Treasurer Clint Zweifel says a new five-year management agreement with Upromise Investments will slash fees for the MOST 529 college savings plan by 44%.

“This saves Missouri savers for college $18.5 million over five years,” according to Zweifel. “So what that means is essentially they’re going to be charged less fees and that money, instead of being gone and being lost to fees, is going to be reinvested for them.”

Details of a half a million dollar financial assistance package will be announced later.

Zweifel says MOST can allow a parent to accumulate quite a bit of money to pay for college, whether that’s 18 years down the road or four or five.

“No matter when you start, starting is the key thing,” says Zweifel, “and, you know, the good news is that with MOST whether you use a financial adviser or you do it on your own, we have options that are really geared for your risk level and the age of your child.”

Zweifel says college savings in Missouri is up 50% in the past two years. A plan can be started with as little as a $25 investment. The money invested can be used to offset the costs of a four-year, two-year or technical school education. Upromise opened a downtown Kansas City office in June, employing 35 people, expected to grow to 80 by mid-2011.

The direct-sold MOST 529 Plan features low-cost Vanguard investments, including three age-based options, 10 index-based portfolios and four actively managed portfolios. Missourians working through a financial advisor have expanded options through DWS Investments. The advisor-sold MOST 529 Plan will be distributed solely through DWS Distributors, while continuing to provide access to other investments including American Century, American Funds, BlackRock, Columbia, Franklin Templeton, Invesco, PIMCO and T. Rowe Price. Investors will continue to have access to the Scout International Terror-Free portfolio from UMB Bank.

Currently, 113,000 account owners have invested nearly $1.5 billion with the direct-sold MOST 529 Plan.

AUDIO: Brent Martin reports [1:15 MP3]