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Expert Financial Aid Advice Articles

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FAFSA Information for DACA Students

FAFSA Information for DACA Students

DACA students are defined as a subgroup of these undocumented students who have received Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals.

Elizabeth Hoyt
Published December 10, 2014
5 Myths about Financial Aid

5 Myths about Financial Aid

Don't fall for these myths when it comes to financial aid.

By Kathryn Knight Randolph
Published October 28, 2014
7 Resources for Returning Students Paying for College

7 Resources for Returning Students Paying for College

Find financial aid and scholarships for returning adult students.

By Kathryn Knight Randolph
Published August 22, 2014
10 Easy-to-Make, Easy-to-Avoid Financial Aid Blunders

10 Easy-to-Make, Easy-to-Avoid Financial Aid Blunders

Don’t rush the process – any mistakes can cause serious delays in the process or, worse, disqualify you all together.

Elizabeth Hoyt
Published February 18, 2014
Finding Funding on Campus

Finding Funding on Campus

Avoiding the topic of financial aid only makes it that much worse in the long run!

Elizabeth Hoyt
Published January 29, 2014
Avoiding the Average...

Avoiding the Average...

Stop being a statistic and start getting smart about student debt.

Elizabeth Hoyt
Published December 6, 2013
The Best Schools for Financial Aid

The Best Schools for Financial Aid

These schools prove that it is possible to make educational funding readily available to their students.

Elizabeth Hoyt
Published October 8, 2013
How America Pays for College

How America Pays for College

Families have adjusted to the post-recession when it comes to paying for school, using grants and scholarships to fund the rising college costs.

Elizabeth Hoyt
Published July 24, 2013
The “Free” Tuition Experiment

The “Free” Tuition Experiment

It seems as though many are considering the recent doubling of student loan rates as a tipping point to the education cost issue - with more alternative payment programs resulting.

Elizabeth Hoyt
Published July 10, 2013
Why Do Financial Aid Application Forms Use Last Year's Income?

Why Do Financial Aid Application Forms Use Last Year's Income?

Why do the government and colleges use last year's income to determine financial aid for the current year? Our financial situation has changed, my husband was laid off last year but ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published April 29, 2013
Does Adoption Affect an Orphan's Eligibility for Financial Aid?

Does Adoption Affect an Orphan's Eligibility for Financial Aid?

I am trying to advise two students whose mother died four years ago and their father died last week, unfortunately. The girls' grandmother is now taking care of them (a 9th ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published April 22, 2013
How to Qualify for a PLUS Loan Despite an Adverse Credit History

How to Qualify for a PLUS Loan Despite an Adverse Credit History

I'm currently an MBA student who has a VERY adverse credit history. Part of which includes a defaulted Federal Loan. I'm halfway through my first year of business school and find ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published April 15, 2013
New Proposals for Hybrid Fixed/Variable Interest Rates on Federal Student Loans

New Proposals for Hybrid Fixed/Variable Interest Rates on Federal Student Loans

The President's budget for fiscal year 2014, which was released on April 10, 2013, includes a proposal for switching new federal student loans to a hybrid fixed/variable interest rate scheme starting ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published April 12, 2013
Can Parent PLUS Loans Get Income-Based Repayment and Loan Forgiveness?

Can Parent PLUS Loans Get Income-Based Repayment and Loan Forgiveness?

You've mentioned previously that while Parent PLUS loans are nominally eligible for public service loan forgiveness, they are not eligible for IBR or ICR, which leaves nothing left to forgive. Is ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published April 8, 2013
Quick Answers to Common Questions about Financial Aid

Quick Answers to Common Questions about Financial Aid

Financial aid is an inherently complicated topic. Sometimes students and parents have questions that may seem obvious to people who have more experience with financial aid. But they can't find the ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published April 1, 2013
What Happens When Retirement Money isn't in a Qualified Retirement Plan?

What Happens When Retirement Money isn't in a Qualified Retirement Plan?

I am a single parent, age 56 and my daughter will be applying for college next year. I make less than $60,000, but have just over $100,000 in savings and mutual ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published March 25, 2013
Questions about Qualifying for the Federal Parent PLUS Loan

Questions about Qualifying for the Federal Parent PLUS Loan

My son has been accepted to an expensive private non-profit college for the fall. We have been awarded a pretty generous financial aid package from the school (approximately $30,000) which leaves ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published March 18, 2013
Does Dependency Status on Income Tax Returns Affect Financial Aid Eligibility?

Does Dependency Status on Income Tax Returns Affect Financial Aid Eligibility?

My daughter graduated from undergraduate school in May of this year. As far as student loans were concerned she was considered a dependent for the 4 years she attended there and ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published March 11, 2013
Sequestration Cuts Federal Student Aid Funding

Sequestration Cuts Federal Student Aid Funding

Congress did not reach an agreement to reduce the FY2013 budget deficit on March 1, 2013. Accordingly, the automatic across-the-board budget cuts known as sequestration will become effective on March 27, ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published March 4, 2013
How is a Life Estate Treated on the FAFSA? Do the Restrictions Matter?

How is a Life Estate Treated on the FAFSA? Do the Restrictions Matter?

How is a life estate reflected on the FAFSA? A student's parent has a deed with student's grandparent having life use of the property through a life estate. Please be New ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published March 4, 2013