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  • +9

    Reporting Prepaid Tuition Plans and 529 Plans on the FAFSA for Independent Students

    I'm confused as to how to treat a prepaid tuition plan when applying for financial aid. I'm an independent student but I have a small prepaid tuition account which is held by a parent as account owner with me as the beneficiary. Since I don't list parent assets when filling out the FAFSA, do I need to list the prepaid tuition ...
    Published about 5 years ago | Rated: +9
  • +5

    Should Parents Pay Off Credit Cards Before Applying for College Loans and Other Aid?

    Why is it better for parents to pay off credit cards (if one can) before obtaining loans for a child for college? — Diane H. Most forms of consumer debt, such as credit cards and auto loans, are ignored on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Even education loans are ignored. The only exception to this rule occurs when ...
    Published over 4 years ago | Rated: +5
  • +9

    7 Resources for Returning Students Paying for College

    7 Resources for Returning Students Paying for College
    As a returning student, you may feel that the scholarship search will be fruitless, financial aid will be nonexistent and that there are more inconveniences rather than benefits to going back to school. But that’s not the case at all. In fact, there are more than a few resources at your disposal to help you pay for school too. Independent Student ...
    Published about 1 year ago | Rated: +9
  • +8

    Congress Proposes Cutting Student Financial Aid in FY2012 Federal Education Budget

    The U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate are considering proposals to cut student financial aid in the FY2012 federal education budget. Rep. Denny Rehberg (R-MT), chairman of the House Appropriations subcommittee with oversight over education spending, released draft legislation (H.R. 3070) on Friday, September 30, 2011, which includes several changes to student financial aid for college. The legislation was referred ...
    Published about 4 years ago | Rated: +8
  • +26

    Answers to Introductory Questions about Financial Aid for College

    Answers to Introductory Questions about Financial Aid for College
    I am a high school junior and an Upward Bound scholar. I do not have any way to pay for college and I really want to attend. How do I apply for financial aid? What are the requirements? Do I have to pay for anything? What advice do you have for me if I do receive financial aid? — Alexis M. ...
    Published almost 5 years ago | Rated: +26
  • +4

    Are UGMA and UTMA Accounts Reported as Investments on the FAFSA?

    Tuesday, May 29 is National College Savings Day (i.e., May 29 is 5/29, a cute reference to 529 college savings plans). To commemorate the occasion, Mark Kantrowitz answers a question about saving for college. After submitting our FAFSA for my son, we got back an EFC of 23207 on the SAR. I have been told by admissions that that is extremely ...
    Published over 3 years ago | Rated: +4
  • +11

    Death and Disability May Now Get You Out of Paying Loans

    Death and Disability May Now Get You Out of Paying Loans
    According to a press release from Securian Financial Group, Sallie Mae is adding a total and permanent disability discharge on its Smart Option private student loan. This discharge will forgive the loan if the primary borrower becomes totally and permanently disabled. In addition, Sallie Mae will cancel the Smart Option private student loan if the primary borrower dies. Securian Financial Group ...
    Published over 5 years ago | Rated: +11
  • +3

    When is Real Estate Reported as a Business Asset on the FAFSA?

    For parents who are self-employed and own real estate as one of their businesses, should they list the real estate assets as their assets (since they are self-employed) or as business assets? Does it make a difference one way or other? When we listed $350,000 in property as our assets, it made a huge difference but we are not sure how ...
    Published about 3 years ago | Rated: +3
  • +5

    A Prospective Student is Ineligible for Financial Aid Because of a Student Loan Default

    I gave college a shot when I was 18 and dropped out due to major health problems. Student loans obviously did not disappear because of this and I have been struggling with them ever since. Now at age 24 I finally feel that I am healthy enough to give school a second try. I thought I had every detail worked out ...
    Published about 4 years ago | Rated: +5
  • +22

    Survey Says: Parents Still Saving for College Despite Economy

    Sallie Mae and Gallup just released the results of a survey of how American families save for college. The survey found that most parents are continuing to save for college despite the economy and that saving for college slightly trails saving for retirement. More than 9 in 10 of the parents (92%) think that it is likely or very likely that ...
    Published over 6 years ago | Rated: +22
  • +5

    How Does a Pending Foreclosure or Short Sale Affect Financial Aid?

    How do we answer the question "Do you own your home" on financial aid forms when we are in pre-foreclosure? We are not yet in active foreclosure, but are several years in arrears on our mortgage as we are significantly underwater on our loans and have been unsuccessful so far in getting a satisfactory modification. To that end, we just retained ...
    Published over 2 years ago | Rated: +5
  • +4

    Kantro's Tips to Save You Money!

    Kantro's Tips to Save You Money!
    Financial Aid Guru Mark Kantrowitz has compiled his top tips on repaying student loans, saving money and alternatives to student loans. Any wise student will heed this advice! Repaying Student Loans • Sign up for auto-debit with electronic billing, where the monthly loan payments are automatically debited from your bank account. Many education lenders offer a 0.25% or 0.50% interest rate ...
    Published about 5 years ago | Rated: +4
  • -1

    Potential Impact of the Fiscal Cliff on Federal Student Financial Aid

    The Budget Control Act of 2011 enacted automatic across-the-board spending cuts in the federal budget if Congress in unable to achieve specified reductions in overall spending on its own. This process is called sequestration. The White House's Office of Management and Budget released a 394-page report on Friday, September 14, 2012, detailing the specific budget lines in the FY2013 budget that ...
    Published about 3 years ago | Rated: -1
  • +17

    Figuring College Cost: The Package Deal

    When you want to know what something costs you check the price tag, right? But sometimes it's not so simple. Compare going to a big-ticket school with attending a college with less expensive tuition. You might think it's easy to figure out which will cost you more. But in fact, every school figures out your financial aid package differently. And that ...
    Published about 7 years ago | Rated: +17
  • +9

    How to Report Stocks on the FAFSA

    I am a single mom and my son will be entering his freshman year in college this fall. The FAFSA application asks for the gross income from last year's tax return. My W-2 total includes not only my salary but also stock grants that were given to me by my employer. This total in no way reflects the amount I lived ...
    Published over 5 years ago | Rated: +9
  • +7

    Impact of a Gift Trust Account on Eligibility for Need-Based Financial Aid

    My daughter turned 18 recently, and received a $25,000 mutual fund statement with her name on it. Her aunt had put $10,000 away in 1995 in a gift trust account for a minor. This was a mutual fund account in which the interest was reinvested each year and therefore no IRS interest statements were generated. We were unaware that her aunt ...
    Published about 3 years ago | Rated: +7
  • +7

    Can a Student Receive Both Need-Based Grants and Merit-Based Scholarships?

    If a child does receive FAFSA can they still receive scholarships and grants? — Y.P. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is used to apply for need-based financial aid from the federal government, state governments and most colleges. The financial aid will include a mix of grants, loans and student employment. The terms grants and scholarships are often used ...
    Published over 3 years ago | Rated: +7
  • +3

    When Should a Child's UTMA or UGMA Account be Moved into a 529 College Savings Plan Account?

    I have an old UTMA account for my daughter with Janus, with approximately $5,000 in gains. I opened this before they even had 529 college savings plans. I was thinking of transferring this to a 529 account with My daughter is 13. Is it worth transferring this UTMA account to a 529 and paying capital gains now, or is it ...
    Published over 3 years ago | Rated: +3
  • +7

    An Early Look at the New Income-Based Repayment Plan

    A new version of income-based repayment (IBR) was enacted by the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010, but will be effective only for new borrowers on or after July 1, 2014. President Obama has proposed fast-tracking the new IBR plan to make it available to more students sooner. This article presents a sneak peak at the details of the ...
    Published over 3 years ago | Rated: +7
  • +20

    If the Financial Aid Package Does Not Fit, A Request for More Aid You Should Submit

    I'm 16 years old and I'm the valedictorian of my senior graduating class in New York City. This year was a very difficult one finding the right college to go; fortunately I did find the perfect college. The problem is that the college left me with an unmet need of almost $13,000 when my Student Aid Report from the FAFSA said ...
    Published over 5 years ago | Rated: +20