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Browse Expert Financial Aid Advice Articles

  • +9

    Dad Died, Mom Remarried; Grandma Moved In. How do These Changes Affect My FAFSA?

    We recently had an addition in the family. Not a new sibling, but my mother's mom is now living with us. She's great and we love having her, but she's not free. Should I change any info on my FAFSA because of this? — Sana B. If your grandmother lives with and receives more than half her support from your parents, ...
    Published over 4 years ago | Rated: +9
  • +5

    Questions about Net Assets and Changes in Marital Status

    On the asset section of the FAFSA form if you have $100,000 in stocks but also have a $75,000 margin loan balance would you net this out and put down $25,000 in stock assets? — Rob A. Yes. You report the net asset value, namely the current market value of the assets minus any debts secured by the assets. Since a ...
    Published over 4 years ago | Rated: +5
  • +8

    Tips for Evaluating Financial Aid Award Letters

    Financial aid award letters provide college students with information about college costs and the types and amount of financial aid the student will receive. Families rely on the financial aid award letters to help them understand college costs and compare costs among different colleges. But financial aid award letters can sometimes be confusing. Fastweb surveyed about 580,000 college freshmen and sophomores ...
    Published over 3 years ago | Rated: +8
  • +4

    How does bankruptcy affect PLUS loan eligibility?

    I applied for a Parent PLUS loan for my son's education starting this fall. I was turned down due to filing chapter 7 four years ago this October. They said I would not be able to get funds until October of 2010. My lawyer, who helped me file chapter 7 said that he believed this was discrimination and not allowed. Is ...
    Published almost 5 years ago | Rated: +4
  • +9

    Questions about How to Handle an Inheritance and Scholarships for Cancer Survivors

    Our son is a sophomore in college. He receives both subsidized and unsubsidized loans. My husband and I have been paying the remaining balance for his education. I recently inherited approximately $100,000. I am aware that we should pay off high interest debt with this money. However, we want to save enough to pay for the rest of his college education ...
    Published over 3 years ago | Rated: +9
  • +8

    Emergency Dental Care for an International Student; Reporting a New Spouse's Income and Assets on the FAFSA

    I am not a US citizen. I came to the United States a month ago to begin graduate school. Unfortunately I got a severe toothache a week ago. As a teaching assistant I have health insurance provided by my school, but it doesn't cover dental care. No matter how bad it gets, the toothache will not be considered an emergency. The ...
    Published almost 4 years ago | Rated: +8
  • +13

    Secrets to Settling Defaulted Federal Student Loan Debts for Less than What You Owe

    Your federal student loans are in default and collection agencies are calling you dozens of times a day. They are threatening to garnish your wages, offset your income tax refunds and ruin your credit. They may even have crossed the line into harassment, calling you a worthless person and threatening you with physical harm. Are there any ways of getting out ...
    Published about 4 years ago | Rated: +13
  • +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 about 4 years ago | Rated: +20
  • +7

    Ask the Expert: Why Not Borrow from My 401(k) for My Daughter's College Tuition?

    QUESTION: Why not borrow from my 401(k) for my daughter's college tuition, as there will be less to lose in this economic crisis? -- Betsy Thomas ANSWER: Borrowing from your 401(k) is almost always a big mistake. It may seem innocuous, since instead of paying back a bank loan, you're paying yourself. But you've lost the opportunity to earn further returns ...
    Published over 5 years ago | Rated: +7
  • -1

    Is tuition refund insurance worthwhile?

    College is a big investment, as expensive as buying an automobile or a house. You insure your car and your home, why not insure your child's college education? Tuition refund insurance provides a full or partial refund of college costs -- including tuition, fees, room and board -- in the event your child is forced to withdraw midway through the school ...
    Published about 5 years ago | Rated: -1
  • +8

    Choosing an Education Loan

    Choosing an Education Loan
    Most families evaluate education loans based mainly on cash flow considerations: How much money can you get to pay for college costs and/or living expenses? How much are the monthly payments? When do the payments start and when do they end? What is the total cost of the loan (total payments over the life of the loan)? Who is responsible for ...
    Published over 5 years ago | Rated: +8
  • +13

    Options for a Family Denied Education Loans Due to Insufficient Income

    My daughter received some financial aid for her freshman year of college but we still had to take out a sizable loan for the rest. She applied for a loan her sophomore year and was denied because we have "insufficient income" to repay the debt. My husband is self-employed as a landscaper and it was a bad year. She was attending ...
    Published almost 4 years ago | Rated: +13
  • +250

    Would Forgiving Student Loans Stimulate the Economy?

    Would Forgiving Student Loans Stimulate the Economy?
    Several grass-roots groups were established on Facebook in early 2009 calling for the cancellation of all student loan debt under the theory that this will stimulate the economy. Most noteworthy is the group Cancel Student Loan Debt to Stimulate the Economy (see also www.forgivestudentloandebt.com) founded by Robert Applebaum, a New York attorney. This group has grown to have more than 220,000 ...
    Published almost 5 years ago | Rated: +250
  • +8

    FAFSA Questions Concerning Assets and Legal Guardianships

    I am an incoming freshman in college and my single mom is worried about the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). We recently sold our house and are currently living in a rented apartment. The money from selling the house is in her savings account. We are currently looking for a new house. My mom is worried that if we ...
    Published almost 5 years ago | Rated: +8
  • +4

    Treatment of Grandparent Assets Held by a Parent on the FAFSA

    I am completing the FAFSA for my son and daughter. My Mom is elderly and has put my name as secondary on her accounts. Do I have to report the money in those accounts as my assets on the FAFSA? It doesn't seem fair if I do, because the money is not mine to use. — Chris S. Grandparents sometimes transfer ...
    Published over 4 years ago | Rated: +4
  • +10

    Questions about Obtaining and Repaying Student Loans

    How will my credit score effect my ability to get the funding I need for graduate school? If my credit is not great, will I be able to get the loans I need to cover my college costs? — Katy C. The federal Stafford loan does not depend on your credit history. As a graduate student you will be able to ...
    Published almost 5 years ago | Rated: +10
  • +5

    Questions about the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010

    If you have already graduated from college, will you be affected by the new changes to student loans in the health care bill? — Lauren A. No. None of the changes enacted by the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 will affect students who have already graduated. Starting July 1, 2010, all new federal education loans will be made ...
    Published over 4 years ago | Rated: +5
  • +9

    Questions about Assets and the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

    There are many college financial planners in my area who claim to be able to help us "legally and ethically" reposition our assets to lower our expected family contribution (EFC) and save us thousands of dollars per year in college costs. Are there really such secrets out there that will help us that much? — Larry C. Less than 4% of ...
    Published over 4 years ago | Rated: +9
  • +3

    How can a student on academic probation pay for college with no aid?

    My son has brain damage along with seizures and a reading learning disability. With all the doctors appointments, hospital stays and seizures he is on academic probation this semester. So that means, well you know what that means, he will not be allowed to apply for FAFSA this semester. My question to you all is how can I afford to pay ...
    Published over 4 years ago | Rated: +3
  • +10

    Clearing Up Confusion. What are Parents Responsible for on FAFSA?

    There seems to be a lot of confusion about which parent is responsible for completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), so I'm answering a few more questions on this topic. The references to "father's/stepfather's" on the FAFSA can be confusing for children of divorced parents. I'm 17 yrs old and I live with my mother and my stepfather. ...
    Published over 4 years ago | Rated: +10
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