Financial Aid Traps To Avoid, Part 2

In our last story we reviewed 3 financial aid traps to avoid:

  • Misunderstanding the aid you’re awarded
  • Fear of high prices, and
  • Drawing from your retirement to help with expenses

Today let’s look at three more, to help get you in the best position possible for aid.

– Scott

More Financial Aid Traps To Avoid

1. The Dangers of Procrastination

When it comes to filing for financial aid, DO NOT WAIT!

Start early and fill out the FAFSA as soon as possible.

There are many different deadlines for federal, state, and college financial aid programs, and some of them are quite early.

Use estimated tax information on the FAFSA if you don’t yet have your returns, then come back later and fill in the exact figures.

This way you can meet the early deadlines.

Otherwise, you risk missing out on the maximum financial aid package for which you are eligible.

2. Just Because You Need It Doesn’t Mean They Give It

Not all colleges fulfill 100% of financial need.

Don’t assume that your FAFSA EFC (Expected Family Contribution) is all a college will expect you to pay.

Ask each college whether they fulfill 100% of financial need, and if not, what percentage of need do they cover.

A cheaper school that only covers 70% of need could be more expensive than a higher priced school that covers 100%.

3. Fixed Financial Aid Packages

Many people assume that if their financial need increases in the future, then their aid package will be accordingly adjusted.

Unfortunately, this is not always the case.

Some schools will not adjust your package for any reason after your first year of college.

This is something you need to find out ahead of time, especially if you expect your need to increase in the future.

You don’t want to discover in your child’s third year of college that you can no longer afford to pay for it.

Until next time…

To Your Family’s Successful College Search,

Scott Weingold

Co-Founder, College Planning Network LLC
Publisher, CollegeMadeSimple.com – The free educational resource of College Planning Network

 

 

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Editor's Note: Scott Weingold has been ranked the #1 “College Financial Aid Expert Worth Knowing About” in the entire country by CollegeStats.org.  He has co-authored the book, “The Real Secret To Paying For College. The Insider’s Guide To Sending Your Child To College – Without Spending Your Life’s Savings.” Scott also publishes a popular free online newsletter, “College Funding Made Simple" which reveals insider’s tips, methods, and strategies for beating the high cost of college.

Scott is the co-founder and a principal of the widely renown College Planning Network, LLC – the nation’s largest and most reputable college admissions and financial aid planning firm. CPN is a proud member of the Better Business Bureau, the National Association of College Funding Advisors, the National Association for College Admission Counseling, the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators and the Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education.

Scott, along with his college funding advisory team, helps thousands of families throughout the country with their college planning needs and offers a series of free educational webinars and workshops on “How To Pay For College Without Going Broke In The Process!” He's been featured or mentioned in The Philadelphia Inquirer, Yahoo News, TheStreet.com, Voice America with Ron Adams, Crains Cleveland Business, and on Cleveland Connection with James McIntyre.  Scott has published numerous articles and is a professional speaker who has addressed thousands of audiences online and offline throughout the United States.  His actionable insights and candid, open approach have earned him & his team numerous media interviews, citations, and speaking opportunities, and his free online video workshop is one of the Internet’s most widely viewed pieces in the college funding space.