Isn’t it the worst when you wake up after you’ve hit the snooze button? Just a few more minutes! If your child is approaching college and you’re behind on education savings, it can feel like hitting the snooze button too many times. But it’s okay — there’s still some time to potentially address college costs.
Here are a few basic tips to save some money when you’re up against the college deadline.
Apply for financial aid as early as possible. The standard Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form is the first and most important step to complete. Financial aid packages are awarded on a “first come, first served” basis, so be sure to complete the FAFSA ASAP! Being prompt may increase your chances at better awards and loans, and that can mean less out of your pocket.
Properly account for income. It’s a common misconception that students of high-earning parents are automatically ineligible for financial aid. In reality, the student’s income and assets factor more heavily than parental income in the Expected Family Contribution (EFC). This figure is subtracted from the student’s estimated costs to determine the amount of federal aid awarded.
Consider employing your child. If you own a small business or rental property, you can offer a specialized Employer Education Assistance program. This program allows you to give up to $5,250 a year tax-free to employees who are attending college – including your own child.
No matter what stage of life you’re in, it’s never too late to save for college. With some simple strategy and some help from your financial services professional, you can find ways to reduce college costs and increase the ways to pay for it. Schedule some time today to talk about your options.