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College Aid Myths

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Myth #1: Middle Class families don’t qualify for financial aid.

Although middle class families usually do not qualify for federal or state need based grants, they often qualify for federal student loans and non-needs based scholarship funds. Middle class families must fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) in order to receive the most scholarship money possible. If you don’t apply you will not get any money, either need based or merit based. The FASA form simply puts you on the radar of the financial aid office.

Myth #3: Government aid provides the most money.

State-supported schools and government scholarships are only a small part of the picture. While public schools may have cheaper prices because they are subsidized by the state, private colleges are the biggest suppliers of scholarships and offer more aid than state colleges. The same goes for federal aid funds, with private schools providing a larger amount of scholarships for students.

Myth #4: You will be penalized for having saved money for college.

If you have saved money for college, you don’t need to worry about those savings working against you. In fact, FAFSA never even asks about any retirement funds and allows you to save some money in non-retirement accounts without any penalty. The best way to save money is under the parents name instead of the child’s name, because only the savings with your child’s name will hurt your chances of receiving the most financial aid. Every situation is individual and therefore needs individual advice from a trained professional.