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FAFSA

Divorced Parents and Aid Applications

Divorced parents tend to have a number of questions about aid issues and college applications in general. Let’s start with the basics: Do both parents’ incomes count? And what about new spouses’? As is so often the case, the answer is different depending on the aid form. The FAFSA is simple so let’s start there. The FAFSA only counts the…

The “E” in EFC

So you’ve calculated your EFC and are breathing a sigh of relief, telling yourself, “We can do this.” Hold on a second. “E” is “Expected,” not “maximum” or “guaranteed” or anything like that. There is no requirement that your school of choice meets your financial need, or if it does, that loans aren’t part of the aid package. That’s why…

Lucky You: Grandparents Want to Help

If you are among those fortunate individuals whose parents want to help pay for their grandchild’s education, it’s worth figuring out the best way for them to do so in order to avoid the law of unintended consequences. In the college world, unintended consequences include losing financial aid as a result of a grandparent’s gift. First, you need to know…

529 Plan Basics

There’s no such thing as a dumb question, but asking questions seems to make plenty of people– myself included– feel dumb, which then causes us not to do it. For those who find themselves wishing they had asked more about 529 plans, here is a “back to basics” guide. (As an aside, there is a veritable alphabet soup of college…

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