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Expert Financial Aid Advice Articles

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

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 ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published October 11, 2010
Can You Appeal for More Student Financial Aid in the Middle of the Academic Year?

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 ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published September 26, 2011
How Does a Parent Enrolling in College Affect the Child's Financial Aid?

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 ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published May 9, 2011
Questions about Income and the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

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

My husband earns about $125,000 in salary and I am a stay at home mom. My husband just changed jobs and got his deferred salary and his retirement from 25 years ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published November 9, 2009
Congressman Hansen Clarke Proposes Student Loan Relief Legislation

Congressman Hansen Clarke Proposes Student Loan Relief Legislation

Rep. Hansen Clarke (D-MI-13) introduced the Student Loan Forgiveness Act of 2012 (H.R. 4170) on March 8, 2012. If enacted, this legislation will provide student loan forgiveness for federal education loans, ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published March 12, 2012
Financial Aid Insider Secrets

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 ...

Published December 9, 2009
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., ...

Published April 22, 2009
How Should Divorced Parents Split a Child's College Costs?

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 ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published May 23, 2011
First Lady Michelle Obama's FAFSA Completion Challenge

First Lady Michelle Obama's FAFSA Completion Challenge

In addition to encouraging students to complete the FAFSA, the First Lady could send your school a special video message or speak at your commencement ceremony!

Elizabeth Hoyt
Published December 10, 2014
How Can One Shelter Parent Assets on the FAFSA?

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 ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published December 3, 2012
When Can a Student's Grandparents Substitute for the Parents on Financial Aid Forms?

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 ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published August 8, 2011
Ask the Expert: Why Not Borrow from My 401(k) for My Daughter's College Tuition?

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

Why borrowing tuition money from your 401(k) is a bad idea.

By Mark Kantrowitz
Published April 21, 2009
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 ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published July 20, 2009
How To Ask Friends and Family for Money for a Child's College Savings Plan

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 ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published May 12, 2011
Which parent is responsible for completing the financial aid application?

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 ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published January 4, 2010
How can a student on academic probation pay for college with no aid?

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 ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published January 18, 2010
Are "Dual Enrollment" Students Considered College Students on the FAFSA?

Are "Dual Enrollment" Students Considered College Students on the FAFSA?

Families should file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at www.fafsa.ed.gov as soon as possible after January 1. While the federal government accepts the FAFSA as late as June ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published January 3, 2011
Do Outstanding Loans Affect Eligibility for Financial Aid?

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 ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published May 10, 2010
How Do I Roll Over US Savings Bonds into a 529 College Savings Plan?

How Do I Roll Over US Savings Bonds into a 529 College Savings Plan?

I have several thousands of dollars in Series EE savings bonds (issued from 1988 through 1992). I know that you can use the bonds relatively tax free if cashed and used ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published February 13, 2012
That Free Financial Aid Seminar May be Just a Worthless Sales Pitch

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 ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published November 18, 2011