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Pay Down Mortgage or Contribute to Son's 529?

Pay Down Mortgage or Contribute to Son's 529?

I just sold my house and moved in with my new husband. We have three children between us (two are his) and are looking for a bigger house. Would it make ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published December 14, 2009
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
Questions about Net Assets and Changes in Marital Status

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 ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published February 15, 2010
Not All "Need" is Created Equal

Not All "Need" is Created Equal

Your opinion of "broke" may not be the same as your college's financial aid office's.

By Ryan Uricks
Published April 21, 2009
10 FAFSA Mistakes that Affect Financial Aid

10 FAFSA Mistakes that Affect Financial Aid

Avoid frustration with the FAFSA by being prepared.

Fastweb Staff
Published April 4, 2016
The FAFSA - Step One for Financial Aid

The FAFSA - Step One for Financial Aid

Applying for financial aid is easier than you think. Your first stop: the (FAFSA). For many schools, this is the only form you need. What is it? The FAFSA is the ...

By Kay Peterson, Ph.D.
Published December 31, 2012
Questions about How to Handle an Inheritance and Scholarships for Cancer Survivors

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 ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published November 1, 2010
What Counts as Child Support on the FAFSA?

What Counts as Child Support on the FAFSA?

I am very grateful to Fastweb for providing all that you do. I am especially grateful for your answers to questions. I agreed (outside of the courts) to pay my daughter's ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published February 8, 2010
Is the Non-Custodial Parent a Parent for Federal Student Aid Purposes?

Is the Non-Custodial Parent a Parent for Federal Student Aid Purposes?

I am divorced and the custodial parent of two children who live with me. Both kids have Coverdell Education Savings Accounts. My soon-to-be college student daughter's Coverdell lists her father (my ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published February 22, 2010
Options for a Student Whose Parents Refuse to Complete the FAFSA

Options for a Student Whose Parents Refuse to Complete the FAFSA

I have been financially independent from my parents since I was 19. I'm 23 now. I've been working two jobs and taking 12 hours in school. My school says that I ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published March 1, 2010
College Board Simplifies CSS/Financial Aid PROFILE Form

College Board Simplifies CSS/Financial Aid PROFILE Form

While the US Department of Education is working on simplifying the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), the College Board has already been taking similar steps toward simplifying the CSS/Financial ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published March 10, 2010
Quick Tips for Filing Your FAFSA

Quick Tips for Filing Your FAFSA

Filling out the FAFSA can be tricky. Keep these tips in mind and you shouldn't have any problems. Identify Yourself • Use your legal name as it appears on your Social ...

By Mike Pugh
Published January 15, 2015
Why Do Some Merit-Based Scholarships Require the FAFSA?

Why Do Some Merit-Based Scholarships Require the FAFSA?

I am a 38-year-old student who returned to junior college after being laid off and being unable to find a comparable job. Because I was a "good saver" in my 20's, ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published July 12, 2010
Do You Really Need Reasons to File Your FAFSA?

Do You Really Need Reasons to File Your FAFSA?

Submitting your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) can be a complicated process. From digging through information on your family's assets to decoding income tax forms, filling out the FAFSA ...

By Bridget Kulla
Published January 15, 2015
Reporting Prepaid Tuition Plans and 529 Plans on the FAFSA for Independent Students

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 ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published July 19, 2010
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 the Increase in Financial Aid Applications Will Affect You

How the Increase in Financial Aid Applications Will Affect You

More students means more financial aid applications.

By Kathryn Knight
Published January 6, 2009
How to Complete the FAFSA when a Parent Didn't File her Federal Income Tax Return

How to Complete the FAFSA when a Parent Didn't File her Federal Income Tax Return

I have a problem with my FAFSA. My mom didn't file her income tax returns last year. What do I use when I fill out my FAFSA form? — Erica H. ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published November 8, 2010
Clearing Up Confusion. What are Parents Responsible for on FAFSA?

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 ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published January 25, 2010
How Do You Complete the FAFSA When a Parent is Undocumented?

How Do You Complete the FAFSA When a Parent is Undocumented?

I live with my mother and my brothers. My mother is undocumented and does not work. However, I am a permanent resident and my brothers were born here in the United ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published August 2, 2010