The FAFSA officially opened on October 1st this year, and here at Parros College Planning we cannot stress the importance enough of filling out this application ASAP.
Without it, students are not eligible for merit aid or loans. Last year, the FAFSA was launched for the first time in October rather than its typical January 1st date.
The FAFSA: What is It?
The FAFSA is a form filled out by high seniors and their families that determines how much financial aid a student is eligible for when they go to college. At Parros College Planning, we understand how to fill out the form in a way that qualifies a student for the most financial aid they are eligible for. This year, the FAFSA is available from October 1st until June 30th– but don’t wait until June to fill it out! Additionally, states have their own deadlines for aid that families need to be conscious of. Universities require that students fill out the FAFSA before they will give out financial aid, and many non-government scholarship entities require this form as well.
This year, the FAFSA is requiring that families submit an income report from two years ago. This year’s eligible students will submit an income report from 2016 (it is actually for the 2018-2019 school year- I know it can be confusing). This change was implemented because it circumvents your family having to estimate your tax information by using an older report.
“But I Don’t Need the FAFSA!” (Or So You Think)
Even if you think that your family does not need financial aid, there are many advantages to filling it out as soon as possible. Take a look at our top 3 reasons to fill out the FAFSA now.
Eligibility for Other Scholarships
Even if you feel you will not qualify for funds from the federal government, filling out the form may qualify your student for other scholarships. Many schools require the FAFSA to be completed for merit based scholarship consideration.
Federal Loans and Promptness
The idea of filling out a complicated form with weighty consequences can bring on feelings of dread and procrastination. However, filling out the FAFSA– and doing so timely– can get the student double the financial aid compared to students who waited until after the three months the FAFSA goes live. For many states, when the FAFSA money has been appropriated to the families who applied first, the money has run out.
The FAFSA Can Help Your Student’s Admissions Chances
Many universities perceive a student’s submitted FAFSA form as interest in their school. If this form isn’t submitted, it can be seen as a red flag. In fact, this can be seen as such a sign of disinterest that the university may not give your student a place in their freshman class.
Don’t miss the opportunity to qualify for aid. If you need help filling out the FAFSA please schedule a consultation with Parros College Planning. We have been assisting with this very important form, and other financial aid forms, for over 12 years and would love to help you by answering any questions you have.