What You Need To Go Back To School (And Get Financial Aid Too!)

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Not everyone finishes college their first time around. Sometimes, you have to go back to school to get your degree—and sometimes, money stands in the way of this.

Of course, returning students have the same federal loan options as anyone else; however, they may also have some additional factors that affect their aid. If you want to return to school and can’t pay out of pocket, here are three things that you will need to think about.

3 Reasons To Think Twice Before Cosigning A Student Loan

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Unless you’re a morlock and you’ve been living underground, you know that college isn’t getting any cheaper. Many students attending college bridge their financial aid gap with private student loans—and approximately 90% of those loans need a cosigner.

Have you ever cosigned for a student loan? Or has someone asked you to cosign for a loan? Better yet, do you know what cosigning for that loan really means for you? You should never take cosigning a student loan lightly. Let’s talk about why.

The Mystery Behind Your Credit Score Calculation

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If you’ve come this far, you probably realize how important it is to have a good credit score. A bad credit score can prevent you from borrowing loans you may need to purchase a home or vehicle, cause you to have high interest rates, or even keep you from getting a job or an apartment.

Most lenders or companies that inquire about credit scores use the FICO score. But what goes into it? You may not realize everything that does or how each factor is weighed. If you don’t know, how are you supposed to better your score?

How To Choose The Right Private Student Loan For You

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With many fall semester bills due on August 1, you may currently be looking for ways to cover your remaining tuition balance. And you may be considering private student loans for the job.

Unfortunately, when it comes to borrowing private student loans, things are as unruly as the Wild West—except there’s no John Wayne to make the tough decisions for you. So, before you sign the dotted line, here are some tips to help you choose the right option for you, pilgrim.

The Graceful Way To Handle Your Student Loan Grace Period

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Congratulations, class of 2014! Graduation came a lot faster than you expected, right?

I’m sure it already feels like the clock is ticking on a few things, like finding a job or getting your own apartment. However, don’t forget one more: If you took out federal student loans, your grace period has begun too.

Loans may not seem like a priority right now if your payments haven’t started. But, just like graduation, they’ll be here before you know it. Prepare accordingly by handling your grace period, well, gracefully. Here’s how.

What’s Going On With Sallie Mae And The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act?

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Last week, the Department of Justice found Sallie Mae in violation of the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA), ordering them to pay $96.6 million in restitution and penalties for unfair and deceptive practices while servicing private student loans. Sallie Mae admits no wrongdoing.

$60 million of that money is to compensate an estimated 60,000 borrowers whose SCRA benefits Sallie Mae may have improperly denied. So, what is SCRA, who does it affect, and why is violating it such a big deal?

Undocumented Students Can Get Aid, Too

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You applied to college and you got in. Congratulations! Why so blue? You’re an undocumented student and you can’t afford college on your own? I get it. The first eligibility qualification for federal student aid is “you must be a U.S. citizen or eligible noncitizen.” The second qualification for most (but not all) state aid—right after the one that says “you must be a resident of that state”—is “you must be a U.S. citizen or eligible noncitizen”. Don’t throw in the towel just yet! Sure, your options are limited—but you do have options.