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Maximizing Aid Eligibility Articles

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Why Should I Complete the FAFSA?

Why Should I Complete the FAFSA?

FAFSA stands for Free Application for Federal Student Aid; translation: free government money to help you pay for school!

Elizabeth Hoyt
Published December 2, 2015
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
Impact of a Gift Trust Account on Eligibility for Need-Based Financial Aid

Impact of a Gift Trust Account on Eligibility for Need-Based Financial Aid

My daughter turned 18 recently, and received a $25,000 mutual fund statement with her name on it. Her aunt had put $10,000 away in 1995 in a gift trust account for ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published September 10, 2012
Should Parents Pay Off Credit Cards Before Applying for College Loans and Other Aid?

Should Parents Pay Off Credit Cards Before Applying for College Loans and Other Aid?

Why is it better for parents to pay off credit cards (if one can) before obtaining loans for a child for college? — Diane H. Most forms of consumer debt, such ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published May 30, 2011
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
Maximizing Aid Eligibility: What You Need to Know

Maximizing Aid Eligibility: What You Need to Know

Work with your parents to maximize your aid eligibility for college.

By Kathryn Knight Randolph
Published June 13, 2011
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
Programs and Scholarships to Pay Off Student Loans

Programs and Scholarships to Pay Off Student Loans

Looking for a bailout? Good news! The only catch is you'll have to do some good...

Elizabeth Hoyt
Published March 31, 2016
FAFSA Updated to Accommodate Same-Sex Parentage

FAFSA Updated to Accommodate Same-Sex Parentage

The changed to the 2014-2015 FAFSA is considered a step forward for the LGBTQ community.

Elizabeth Hoyt
Published May 8, 2013
Top Strategies for Maximizing Aid Eligibility

Top Strategies for Maximizing Aid Eligibility

These strategies will have the largest impact on need-based aid eligibility. By implementing these strategies, you will be able to maximize your aid eligibility and therefore have a chance of receiving ...

Published March 13, 2014
Student Credit Cards

Student Credit Cards

You see the offers everywhere, free duffel bag for signing up for this credit card, free water bottle, campus gear and sometimes even free money. Before you go signing on the ...

By Leah Westfall
Published July 28, 2011
Impact of Capital Gains on Eligibility for Need-Based Financial Aid

Impact of Capital Gains on Eligibility for Need-Based Financial Aid

Families often sell investments such as stocks, bonds and mutual funds to pay college bills. If these investments are not held within a 529 college savings plan or other qualified tuition ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published July 29, 2011
How to Minimize the Impact of a Student's Brokerage Account on Financial Aid

How to Minimize the Impact of a Student's Brokerage Account on Financial Aid

We have an UTMA mutual fund for our son who is a senior in high school (17 years old). It is approximately $19,000 and was intended to help pay for college ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published November 26, 2012
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
Year-End Financial Aid Moves

Year-End Financial Aid Moves

As the year draws to a close, there are several steps families can take to get more need-based and merit-based financial aid. Prepay Next Year's Tuition Taxpayers can claim one of ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published December 20, 2012
Student Debt Guide: Credit Scores

Student Debt Guide: Credit Scores

What's a credit score and why should you care?

Elizabeth Hoyt
Published January 8, 2013
Student Debt Guide: Budgeting and Credit Cards

Student Debt Guide: Budgeting and Credit Cards

Managing money can be quite a challenge. Are you up for it?

Elizabeth Hoyt
Published January 8, 2013
Updates to the Total and Permanent Disability Federal Student Loan Discharge Program

Updates to the Total and Permanent Disability Federal Student Loan Discharge Program

Individuals eligible for the TPD Federal Student Loan Discharge program will now be notified via letter.

Elizabeth Hoyt
Published April 22, 2016
What Happens If You Deliberately Don't Report Assets on the FAFSA?

What Happens If You Deliberately Don't Report Assets on the FAFSA?

I'm doing everything possible to lower my EFC. I have assets, UTMA, mutual funds, stocks and I know they hurt my chances of receiving free money (Federal or state grants). I ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published March 28, 2011
To Convert or Not To Convert; How Does a Roth IRA Conversion Affect Student Aid?

To Convert or Not To Convert; How Does a Roth IRA Conversion Affect Student Aid?

I am retired with no income from employment and a moderate amount of investment income, $20,000 to $30,000 a year. I am contemplating a partial conversion from my traditional IRA to ...

Mark Kantrowitz
Published October 31, 2011