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Browse Expert Financial Aid Advice Articles

  • +37

    He's the Financial Aid Guru. Only on Fastweb.

    He's the Financial Aid Guru.  Only on Fastweb.
    Is your financial aid advice featured in The New York Times? Didn’t think so. Mark Kantrowitz, is nationally recognized as an often quoted leading financial aid expert. With degrees from M.I.T., Carnegie-Mellon and more quotes than Webster’s, he is the financial aid guy’s financial aid guy. Here’s his advice for these tough times. Kantrowitz strongly encourages families to save 1/3 of ...
    Published over 6 years ago | Rated: +37
  • +25

    Why Should I Complete the FAFSA?

    Why Should I Complete the FAFSA?
    Let’s start with a little bit about what the FAFSA actually is. FAFSA stands for Free Application for Federal Student Aid; translation: it determines a student's eligibility for need-based federal financial aid for college, which may include grants, scholarships, work-study and loans. If eligible, it can really help you pay for school! The FAFSA for the 2014-2015 academic year is now ...
    Published almost 2 years ago | Rated: +25
  • +5

    Financial Aid Insider Secrets

    Financial aid is a complicated topic with an alphabet soup of acronyms like FAFSA and EFC, rolling deadlines and (seemingly) endless forms, rules and regulations. But with the state of the economy, you're most likely going to have to get some sort of outside help in your pursuit of higher education. Don't panic! This video will provide you with an ...
    Published almost 6 years ago | Rated: +5
  • +5

    When should you apply for scholarships and financial aid?

    My son will be applying to colleges this fall since he is a high school senior. Should he wait until he is accepted into a college before applying for scholarships? — Bryan R. Your son should start searching for scholarships as soon as possible. There are scholarships with deadlines in every month of the year (more in the fall and spring ...
    Published about 6 years ago | Rated: +5
  • +21

    First Lady Michelle Obama's FAFSA Completion Challenge

    First Lady Michelle Obama's FAFSA Completion Challenge
    The release of the 2015-2016 FAFSA – that’s the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (as if you didn’t know) – is right around the corner. On January 1, 2015, the financial aid form becomes available for the New Year. As part of her Reach Higher education initiative, First Lady Michelle Obama is calling on you to help increase the number ...
    Published 12 months ago | Rated: +21
  • +14

    How Does a Parent Enrolling in College Affect the Child's Financial Aid?

    My daughter is hoping to attend a private college next year. Of course, we will be applying for financial aid and as many scholarships as we can find! My husband works full time and I have always worked full time. In late February, I was temporarily laid off from my job. I should be returning to work on a part-time basis ...
    Published over 4 years ago | Rated: +14
  • +5

    How Should Divorced Parents Split a Child's College Costs?

    I am the custodial parent for my daughter who will go to college this fall. It will be her first year. My income was reported on the FAFSA. This included child support, although my ex-husband has recently stopped paying child support. Now the ex-husband wants access to half of the funds available through the FAFSA to use toward his half of ...
    Published over 4 years ago | Rated: +5
  • +8

    Can You Appeal for More Student Financial Aid in the Middle of the Academic Year?

    My husband lost his job recently. My oldest son did not qualify for student aid for college this year except for federal loans. Is there any way my son could now receive financial aid until my husband finds a new job? — Sonja R. Ask the college for a professional judgment review. Some colleges call it a special circumstances review or ...
    Published about 4 years ago | Rated: +8
  • +205

    Congress Proposes Overhaul of Federal Student Loan and Grant Programs

    Congress Proposes Overhaul of Federal Student Loan and Grant Programs
    The US House of Representatives is considering legislation to overhaul the federal education loan and grant programs. The Student Aid and Fiscal Responsibility Act of 2009, nicknamed SAFRA, will increase funding for federal student aid programs and simplify the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. These changes will implement several of President Obama's campaign promises. Switch to 100% Direct Lending Starting ...
    Published over 6 years ago | Rated: +205
  • +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 6 years ago | Rated: +7
  • +5

    How can a Student Pay for College after Losing Student Aid Eligibility due to Unsatisfactory Academic Progress?

    I am not eligible for federal funding at this time because of unsatisfactory academic progress. My appeal was denied and I was told I would again be eligible for federal funding after "the satisfactory completion" of 6 non-federally funded credit hours in an semester. I could easily accomplish this if it weren't for the fact that I don't have the money ...
    Published about 5 years ago | Rated: +5
  • +7

    How To Ask Friends and Family for Money for a Child's College Savings Plan

    In a Fastweb survey of high school and college students about preferred holiday gifts, more than half of the respondents said that they were hoping for money for college. But asking for money is awkward. It feels like begging. Most people are uncomfortable asking for money, even for a good purpose. Asking for gifts of money is taboo in the United ...
    Published over 4 years ago | Rated: +7
  • +3

    How Can One Shelter Parent Assets on the FAFSA?

    My daughter is going to college next year. We have to file the FAFSA in January. We have money in our savings account that we saved for emergency reasons and some for my daughter's college. Will this affect her chance in getting grants or loans? What should we do? — G.N. Money in a savings account counts as an asset on ...
    Published almost 3 years ago | Rated: +3
  • +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 almost 6 years ago | Rated: +3
  • +6

    When Can a Student's Grandparents Substitute for the Parents on Financial Aid Forms?

    If a student lives with a grandparent, is there any way the student can use the grandparent's income tax information on her FAFSA? I have lived with my grandmother for all 17 years of my life. My parents currently pay a small amount of child support to her, but that is the only financial support that I receive from them. My ...
    Published over 4 years ago | Rated: +6
  • +7

    Which parent is responsible for completing the financial aid application?

    I am confused about which parent's information to include on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). My ex-husband paid child support for 7 months this year from a settlement agreement but has been unemployed for nearly two years. He is re-married. My son is 18, lives with me, and starts college next fall. This year my ex-husband gets to ...
    Published almost 6 years ago | Rated: +7
  • +273

    Can You Get a Pell Grant Even If You Don't Qualify for the Free and Reduced-Price School Lunch Program?

    If a child does not qualify for the free or reduced-price school lunch program, can they still qualify for federal student aid? —Y.P. Yes. Students who don't qualify for the free or reduced-price school lunch program can still qualify for federal student aid and should submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The FAFSA added a question about the ...
    Published almost 5 years ago | Rated: +273
  • +5

    That Free Financial Aid Seminar May be Just a Worthless Sales Pitch

    From time to time I receive solicitations for free financial aid seminars that are really sales pitches for a product or service. I attend these seminars to monitor the information (and misinformation) that these seminars disseminate. The latest one was a bit different, in that it was affiliated with a national asset management and financial planning firm. It's not a very ...
    Published about 4 years ago | Rated: +5
  • -22

    PSST! Want to Graduate from College with an Undergraduate Degree and No Debt?

    A recent research report analyzes the characteristics of the 1.7 million undergraduate students who were able to graduate in 2007-08 without any student loan debt. About two fifths of undergraduate students graduate with no debt and three fifths graduate with less than $10,000 in student loan debt. This analysis yields seven practical tips on what you should do if you want ...
    Published over 4 years ago | Rated: -22
  • +2

    Do Outstanding Loans Affect Eligibility for Financial Aid?

    How do outstanding loans affect future financial aid awards for my children? Is there any advantage to trying to pay them back early (other than less interest)? Are they counted towards my outstanding debt thereby potentially increasing my aid package? — Linda H. Most forms of consumer debt, including auto loans and credit card debt, are ignored by the Free Application ...
    Published over 5 years ago | Rated: +2