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Getting Started

New (School) Year’s Resolutions

I think Oregon is one of the last places in the US that starts school after Labor Day so my apologies if you’re no longer in back-to-school mode. By the way, did anyone else actually enjoy being stuck in school traffic like I did this year? Here are some resolutions your family might make for the coming school year. And,…

Podcast on Financial Aid Strategies

I had a great time talking financial aid and FAFSA strategies on the Hack Your Wealth podcast this week. Check it out here. Want to put this info to work for you? Sign up for The College Financial Plan masterclass. You’ll develop a detailed financial plan for college, learn strategies to maximize financial aid and merit scholarships, find out how…

FAFSA 2022-23 EFC Formula Guide

The FAFSA itself won’t be available until Oct. 1, but in the meantime you can download the EFC Formula Guide to see how the sausage gets made. If you are a parent of a high school senior who will be completing the FAFSA this fall for whom the cost of college is important, here is a suggestion for how to…

Your College Research List

Families getting started on the college search process are well-served by keeping a list of schools that the student is interested in. (This should be the student’s job, by the way.) But what does that list look like? What goes in it? Here’s my suggestion: Create a spreadsheet in Google Sheets (or your preferred online platform). The left-hand column will…

What Year? 2021 Edition

Families who will file the FAFSA this fall should know what dates matter for which data inputs. Income is prior-prior year (meaning most recently filed tax return), assets are “day of” and then there’s the matter of education tax credits such as the American Opportunity Tax Credit. This chart shows what data is used each year: The 2020 tax year,…