Whether you are a new student applying for financial aid for the first time, or an experienced college student who has applied for federal financial aid many times before, knowing the details of the kinds of aid you are seeking is important.
When you complete the FAFSA, you apply for financial aid in the form of grants and loans from the federal government. You don’t have to accept these awards (meaning, if you are offered a loan after you complete the FAFSA, you don’t have to take that loan), but it’s helpful to understand the differences between federal grants and loans to better understand what you are being offered.
While most federal student financial aid programs require that recipients demonstrate some sort of financial need on their Free Application for Student Financial Aid (FAFSA), there is financial aid for middle class and high-income families from federal financial aid programs.
Here is a list of federal programs for students who do not demonstrate significant financial need.
Most federal student grants and loans require that recipients demonstrate some sort of financial need on their Free Application for Student Financial Aid (FAFSA). The federal government defines financial need as follows:
“The difference between the cost of attendance (COA) at a school and your Expected Family Contribution (EFC). While COA varies from school to school, your EFC does not change based on the school you attend.”
Meaning, you have to be in a position where your cost of attending college is more than what the FAFSA estimates you can afford.
There are lots of places to get financial aid. You can get money from the federal and state governments, money from your school, and money from random generous strangers in the form of scholarships. Let’s talk about the kinds of money you can get from the federal government.
Things are about to get wacky here on the blog. I’ve been on a quest for global domination for some time now, and I’ve finally achieved one major milestone: taking over the SALT™ Blog!
(Cue lightning and thunder.)
For many people, this is the time of year when you first start making student loan payments.
Your loans may come with a generous repayment timeline, which means small(ish?) payments for you. Paying that minimum might seem enticing, but it doesn’t make sense to spend a decade paying for a 4-year degree.
When repaying student loans, you have to follow a lot of terms and conditions. However, one thing you’re always allowed to do is pay them off early. If you can afford it, consider prepayment. Here’s why it’s a smart choice.
Helping people understand student loans is our job at SALT™, and few are better at it than Betsy Mayotte—the director of regulatory compliance for American Student Assistance® (our parent company). We told borrowers to “Just Ask” her questions, so check out her answers below (as well as her cat—because if Piglet can’t make student loans better, what can?).
Over Thanksgiving break, I was doing some homework at home (i.e., my parents’ home) when I needed something for the first time in a while: a glue stick.
I was partially appalled (my final year of undergraduate study involved work with a glue stick?) and partially clueless (where could I even find one?). I checked the boxes stuffed in my dad’s office closet, finding a glue stick, as well as my old high school, middle school, and elementary school poster-board projects.
Never did I think 6 years of horrendous science fair experiments could make me nostalgic, but they did. It hit me hard and fast: I only have 1 week left to be a student.
The holidays tend to be the most crucial time for me when it comes to money.
It all starts with Thanksgiving. The first of many good times with friends and family this season in which you splurge and go all out. I sometimes can feel too much “merryness” and spend money when I shouldn’t.
This Thanksgiving was a special one, though. Not just because I got to go to Schenectady, New York, to visit my friend’s family, but also because my first loan payment was due that same day: November 28, 2013. (Ha. Nice timing, Universe).
Oh, yes. I had a lot to be thankful for this year.
Since his grace period ended, Steve has had kind of a rough time. First, his loans literally haunted his dreams. Then, he considered drastic measures to make those payments—like unnecessary surgery or, worse, giving up his cell phone.
So, will things turn out OK for him in the end? Check out our latest comic to find out.