How to get the Most out of FAFSA
- September 6, 2016
- Posted by: Jeff Gitlen
- Category: Financial Aid
The Free Application for Federal Student Aid, otherwise known as FAFSA, is a generally well-known tool to high school students, parents, and college students in the United States of America. It is an application that many prospective college students submit to the government for higher education financial aid.
The results of these applications provide details of federal aid eligibility. This means you find out how much you are eligible to receive each year, and you hear what exactly you qualified for. There are many different types of aid; for instance, you can receive subsidized federal loans, unsubsidized federal loans, federal Pell grants, federal scholarships, teacher grants, and more. Eligibility for all of this is determined via the FAFSA online.
Many people do not know how to extract the maximum amount of possible aid from the FAFSA. There is much to learn from its report; for instance, you will know whether you need to seek more aid. Here is some advice on FAFSA protocol.
First and foremost, the FAFSA needs to filled out ASAP. In the past, the FAFSA opened up on January 1st each year, but this date changed. Now the FAFSA is going to open up on October 1st every year. This allows the government more time to process applications, and it allows applicants to get a better grasp on their finances. Once again, this application needs to be filled out and submitted immediately, so submit it by October 1st!
The next thing to do is analyze the information that the government returns. You can see how much financial aid you are receiving as well as what type of aid. It is with this information that you can act to maximize your financial aid.
One important tip is to analyze if the amount of promised aid is going to cover your college expenses. In order to resolve this dilemma, you can appeal for additional aid from the government. Furthermore, you can include information that is not covered in the FAFSA; for instance, circumstance involving family death, medical bills, or even divorce can be relayed through an appeal. By adding these factors to your overall student aid report, you can greatly increase your chances for getting more federal aid towards your education.
As a parent, you can look for potential educational tax benefits. This helps you save money on tax returns which ultimately adds value to the overall financial aid package. Reports show that some tax benefits for education reasons can mount to hundreds if not thousands of dollars.
The entire FAFSA situation can be taken lightly, but it really should be taken seriously. It is one of the most available and simplest forms of financial aid towards higher education. In many cases, it provides full coverage for your college expenses, but it is up to you to make sure that you receive the maximum amount of aid.