Finding the Right Fit

Contributed by: Angela Zakon, Supervisor

At Leone, McDonnell & Roberts, we aren’t just our clients’ accountants — we also strive to serve our clients in ways that extend beyond financial circumstances alone. Our experienced accountants also want to help our clients plan for real-life situations that require long-term financial planning, including saving for college.

Choosing The Right College Can Overwhelm Parents and Students Alike
For many of our clients, creating (and executing) a college savings strategy can feel challenging and, at times, overwhelming. Often, the stress stems from factors that go far beyond financing. Many parents don’t know how to help their graduating seniors begin to navigate the decision-making process to make the best final choice.

College Solutions Offers Professional Input When Choosing a School
Leone, McDonnell & Roberts partners with College Solutions, a Maine-based college counseling organization that helps parents and students manage the college selection process. Located in South Portland, College Solutions has transitioned to using Zoom for most of their meetings eliminating the need to travel to their office. Leone, McDonnell & Roberts recognizes that leveraging the benefits of a college counseling company offers similar benefits to using a CPA for tax prep — access to seasoned professionals who provide unparalleled insight into their field of expertise. Some of the company’s services include:

  • Quality direction
  • Streamlined college selection
  • Application and essay assistance

Should you consider using College Solutions to help with the college and university selection process? Understanding some of the benefits this company provides can help you decide if it’s the right decision for you and your student. Some of the most compelling reasons to use College Solutions include:

Avoid Costly Mistakes
College is a significant financial decision and often the biggest decision a teenager has to make up to this point in their life. Working with a college counselor can help them get it right the first time. College Solutions has a less than 1% transfer rate, versus the national average of close to 40%.

Time Savings
Researching everything on your own is extensive and time-consuming. Ideally starting during your student’s sophomore year, College Solutions does all the research heavy-lifting for you, enabling you to quickly eliminate schools that don’t fit your student’s needs and focus on those that do.

Stay Informed of Changing Data
Information and rules are constantly changing when it comes to selecting a school. Your college counselor will stay ahead of the data curve so you have access to only the most updated information available.

Manage the Application Process
The application process is complicated, requiring several steps. It can be easy to make mistakes in the process if you don’t know all the details really well. A professional college counselor can explain every step along the way for a finished application that checks all the boxes.

Saves Money in the Long Run
Yes, you have to make an investment in College Solutions services. However, that investment will equip you to make better decisions along the way that actually help you save money. By positioning students in front of the right schools, we save families an average of $35,000 annually.

Most importantly, using a college counseling service can make the process enjoyable. College Solution’s expertise can remove the stress and emotion from finding a college, allowing you and your student to have fun while making plans for the future. Visit their website: