As a lot high school seniors are starting to receive their acceptance letters from the Colleges and Universities they applied to, there is a lot of anxious energy in the house and it’s not all coming from the teenagers. Alongside their kids, parents will have to figure out how they will be paying for college, especially if they have not done the leg work beforehand. What options do they have? Will their kid have to take on debt? What information is necessary to fill out FAFSA? Private loans vs federal loans – what are the advantages of each?
There are a lot of questions out their for parents to consider and in order to help sift through all the noise, we’ve collected resources to alleviate some of that stress below:
FAFSA Website - https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/fafsa
The Free Application for Federal Student aid website has a lot of really helpful information that includes a budgeting tool for students, an explanation and breakdown of general college costs, types of aid a student can receive, different tax benefits for students and parents, and much much more.
Consumer Finance – https://consumerfinance.gov
This website does a great job of breaking down the differences between taking a Federal Student loan and a Private Student loan from a bank. Another really useful tool on this website is the ability to compare different financial aid offers so that student and parent can make an educated choice.
Saving for College – https://savingforcollege.com/intro-to-529s/what-is-a-529-plan
If you still have a few years to go before your kid goes off to college, this website offers a treasure trove of great information on how to save for that day. We specifically recommend the piece explaining what a 529 Savings plan is and all the different ways that it can be used to pay for college.
A great resource for both incoming college students and currently attending students is this database of scholarships. You can narrow your search down by state, ethnicity, or income level as well.
For more information on our Finance Talk topics check out https://www.fitpros.com/finance