1. Deadline? What deadline?Hel-lo, Captain Obvious! Seriously, turn in your forms with plenty of time before the deadline so you won’t miss out on any important aid!
2. Numbers matterWith plenty of numbers involved, it’s easy to read them incorrectly when inputting them into any application documents. Look over your entries, because any mistakes can really delay the process.
3. Don't be greedyDon’t borrow more than you need! It’s important to remember that, especially if it’s financial aid you must pay interest on. Only borrow what’s necessary, so you don’t accumulate unnecessary debt for the future.
4. Signing offYou’re so excited the form is finished that, whoops, you forgot to sign on the dotted line! Double check that all signatures required are filled in, whether it’s yours or a parent/guardian.
5. The right fieldsConfusing tax and healthcare information can get mixed up – make sure you fill out each field with the right information, completely.
6. Mind the blanksDon’t leave anything blank – double check your forms before submitting them!
7. Tossing your recordsSave all of the documents for your records in case anything gets lost or goes missing. That way, you’ll have proof that you filled out your forms on time and won’t be counted out for financial aid consideration!
8. The whole pictureMake sure all of your parent/guardian information is accounted for so that your aid amount is accurate. Also, you’re part of your household size – don’t forget to include yourself!
9. Don’t wait on taxesDo not wait until you have filed your federal income tax returns to submit the FAFSA! You can use estimated numbers to complete the FAFSA, instead. You’ll have the opportunity to correct any errors at a later date (US Department of Education will send an email reminder in April to update the FAFSA information after your federal income tax returns have been filed) and you will be required to update the application after your taxes are filed.
10. Not applyingTime and time again, students claim, “I’m not filing because there’s no way I’ll qualify for aid.” The truth is, you never know until you apply and, in some cases, you must apply to be eligible for certain considerations, like scholarships. Don’t cheat yourself out of the opportunity to get financial aid – apply no matter what!
Have you made any other silly financial aid blunders? Warn people below!