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Financial Aid / Grants
Financial aid comes in many forms and is often overlooked. If you have financial aid available to you, use it! Many schools offer grants and awards based on need. In addition, some colleges offer scholarships to students based on academic achievement or other extracurricular activities.
Income Tax Refunds
Students who work while attending school may be able to claim income tax refunds based on their earnings. You should consult with your accountant about this option before applying for a refund.
State School Tuition Assistance
Some states provide tuition assistance programs to state residents. These programs vary widely in how they operate, so you’ll want to do research ahead of time to learn if your state offers any type of scholarship or tuition assistance program. There are many state-specific sites that can help you find out what programs are available.
Federal Work Study Program (FWS)
The federal government funds work study jobs at participating public institutions. Your college will likely advertise these positions in student handbooks, job postings, and websites. Students are responsible for finding a job that fits their schedule and pay rate; employers are not interested in accommodating students. This can prove difficult, especially if you don’t get off campus housing in your first year. You’ll want to plan early to make sure you don’t miss out on this valuable opportunity.
529 College Savings Plans
529 plans are a type of saving account for education expenses. Unlike regular savings accounts, money does not earn interest while stored inside a 529 account. However, it grows tax-free and can accumulate wealth over time. While contributions to a 529 plan are deductible, withdrawals aren’t. Check with your parents, grandparents, or guardian to learn more about whether this option works best for them.
Private scholarships are awarded to students after they apply, and require no additional application processes. Many private foundations award scholarships to deserving students. Contact your high school counselor or guidance counselor for recommendations.
National Merit Scholarship
There are two types of national merit scholarships: those given directly to students and those given to their families. Each organization administering the program decides which applicants receive scholarships. Application deadlines differ for each organization. Check with your high school counselor or admissions office to learn more about the specific requirements.
Cosign Student Loans
I’m Cosigning Student Loan
If you’re cosigning student loans, they have a negative effect on your credit score.
It’s just like having bad debt, if you don’t pay them off.
And I’ll tell you how to fix that problem.
How to Fix Your Credit Score While You Keep Your Job
So we’ve got about $40,000 in debt right now, and that’s about the average amount of debt for our family.
But you know what? We’re not worried about that right now because we’re still able to work and we’re working hard.
We’re at a point where we’re making money.
We’ve had some challenges along the way.
This is a challenge that we never anticipated, but this is something that we’re going to get past.
The first thing we need to do is start paying down those student loan payments.
Student Loans: How To Pay Them Off Faster
Cosign Student Loans
Cosigning student loans is great if you have a significant amount of debt at any point in time. If you cosign for someone else’s loan, then you become responsible for the full repayment of that loan. If you do not make payments on the debt, then you may lose some of or all of your rights to the property until you pay off the loan. You should only cosign for someone else’s loan if they are trustworthy and reliable.
Cost savings: If you are planning on cosigning for $50,000 worth of student loan debt, it could cost you thousands of dollars, even tens of thousands of dollars over 30 years. Not only does cosigning mean you don’t have to take out student loans yourself, but you also save money on interest rates.
Lower credit score: A high-interest rate makes you less desirable to potential lenders. Your credit score will suffer and you might find it harder to get approved for a mortgage or car loan down the line.
No need for equity: Equity means having something valuable that you own. By cosigning, you are essentially giving up ownership of the asset the money is being borrowed upon.
Cosign Student Loans
Description: I have to cosign my sons student loans for college. I am not sure if he qualifies for them or how much they might cost me. What do you think?
Cosign Student Loans
Payday loans are not a good idea if you’re trying to get ahead financially.
Instead, opt to use student loans to pay off your monthly bills. You don’t want to go bankrupt because of a few extra hundred dollars each month. Plus, if you do end up defaulting on a loan, it’s going to hurt your credit score, making it harder to borrow money later down the road.
Don’t make too many late payments.
If you miss a payment, it could keep you from getting approved for a loan again. If you try to make up for missed payments, you’ll start paying interest and increase your debt.
Apply for only what you need.
Don’t take out a bunch of loans at once. That way, you won’t have to worry about having to make payments when you shouldn’t have been taking them out in the first place.
Stick with your budget.
It may seem like a pain sometimes, but tracking how much money you spend on food, utilities, and other necessities will help you stay on track financially.
Don’t borrow money for things that aren’t essentials.
You don’t need to buy a fancy car or expensive electronics just because someone offered you a loan. You should prioritize your spending — and put your money toward things you really need instead of things you want right now.
Refinance your student loans.
If you have federal Stafford loans, you might qualify for refinancing. Refinancing could lower your interest rate and save you hundreds of dollars in interest over time.
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