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FAFSA Strategies

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Director
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Re: FAFSA Strategies [#permalink] New post 27 Feb 2009, 09:17
chineseburned wrote:
Sorry for the silly question but is there any benefit in applying for FAFSA if the combination of scholarship and savings may get you through the 2 years?


More money is never a bad thing...You can always decide to turn it down later once you've seen your aid package.
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Re: FAFSA Strategies [#permalink] New post 27 Feb 2009, 09:27
peaceyall wrote:
i'm trying to figure out if lowering cash balances really has an impact on expected contribution. to me, it seems like it doesn't and what really matters is your salary and the difference between $10k vs $20k of cash probably won't make much of a difference in EFC. but if it's $10k vs $50k then maybe there will be a big difference in the EFC (assuming the same salary in both scenarios).

what are your thoughts? basically, i'm trying to figure out if it's worth shedding some cash which i can easily do through mortgage payments.

thanks.


Click the link I provided earlier and manually calculate your EFC (page 21 if no dependents other than spouse):
http://studentaid.ed.gov/students/attac ... update.pdf

Or try this online calculator:
http://www.finaid.org/calculators/finaidestimate.phtml

As I said earlier, your assets only contribute .2*(amount of assets you have) to your EFC. Therefore, if you were able to reduce your assets from $50K to $10K then you would reduce your EFC by $8000.
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Re: FAFSA Strategies [#permalink] New post 27 Feb 2009, 09:35
GoBruins wrote:
I honestly wouldn't worry all that much about EFC in my opinion. Since fafsa is used through UG and graduate school it doesn't really corrolate all that much into B-school. My thoughts are that unlike undergrad where Need-Based grant are a significant portion, as well as work-study and other perks. Bschool is mostly for the people who are gonna be pretty well off when they graduate.

That's just my opinion.


EFC does matter. The financial aid office is going to compare your EFC to the expected cost of attending their school for 2009-2010. Let's say your EFC is $15K per year and the cost of attendance is $75K. Then the school will allow you to make up that $60K difference with scholarships, loans, and to a lesser extent, grants. The lower your EFC is, the more money you are eligible for.

I agree that it probably doesn't make sense trying to reduce your assets since they don't count that much, but most people need loans for bschool even if they are "gonna be pretty well off when they graduate."
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Re: FAFSA Strategies [#permalink] New post 27 Feb 2009, 10:47
maverick2011 wrote:
EFC does matter. The financial aid office is going to compare your EFC to the expected cost of attending their school for 2009-2010. Let's say your EFC is $15K per year and the cost of attendance is $75K. Then the school will allow you to make up that $60K difference with scholarships, loans, and to a lesser extent, grants. The lower your EFC is, the more money you are eligible for.


That's not quite true. Regardless of what your EFC is, you can still borrow full cost of attendance (less scholarships and grants) with Stafford and GradPLUS loans. So in your example above, assuming the person got no scholarships, they could get $20.5k in Stafford loans and $54.5k in GradPLUS loans.

The EFC is used as an index so that schools can quickly assess the relative financial need of applicants for determining who qualifies for need-based aid.
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Re: FAFSA Strategies [#permalink] New post 27 Feb 2009, 10:48
zoinnk wrote:
chineseburned wrote:
Sorry for the silly question but is there any benefit in applying for FAFSA if the combination of scholarship and savings may get you through the 2 years?


More money is never a bad thing...You can always decide to turn it down later once you've seen your aid package.



I see. Thanks.
My only concern with filing (and not using) is that this is an inquiry on your credit report that will affect negatively your score in the short term and will stay on your report for 2 years.
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Re: FAFSA Strategies [#permalink] New post 27 Feb 2009, 11:01
Filing a FAFSA isn't a credit inquiry because you're not applying for a loan yet. After you file the FAFSA and your school determines your financial aid package, then you apply for loans - at which point the inquiry will show up on your credit history.
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Re: FAFSA Strategies [#permalink] New post 27 Feb 2009, 11:32
Jerz wrote:
That's not quite true. Regardless of what your EFC is, you can still borrow full cost of attendance (less scholarships and grants) with Stafford and GradPLUS loans. So in your example above, assuming the person got no scholarships, they could get $20.5k in Stafford loans and $54.5k in GradPLUS loans.

The EFC is used as an index so that schools can quickly assess the relative financial need of applicants for determining who qualifies for need-based aid.


I see. Thanks for the clarification. I guess I misunderstood the financial aid officer at Kellogg. I've never been able to find this information (how they use EFC) on the schools' websites.

EDIT: I think I remember what she was saying now...basically, just what you said: they subtract the EFC from the cost of attendance to determine your "need". Your "need" is used to determine eligibility for need-based aid and, in Kellogg's case, merit/need-based scholarships. But you can take out a loan for the full cost minus scholarships and grants.
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Re: FAFSA Strategies [#permalink] New post 14 Mar 2009, 17:48
Finally filed the FAFSA. Woo.

Yes, it was a bit later than ideal. But better later than never :)
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Re: FAFSA Strategies [#permalink] New post 15 Mar 2009, 17:33
How little do you have to make to qualify for subsidized Stafford loans? I qualified and I am almost positive it was a mistake by the school....
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Re: FAFSA Strategies [#permalink] New post 27 Mar 2009, 10:11
Just sent mine away(with $0 expected family contribution, woohoo. Being a volunteer has its perks sometimes). Since I placed 3 schools on my 'schools you are considering attending' list, I'm curious how will they base their aid package since the 2 (especially Wharton vs Duke) have a much different expected cost of living.
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Re: FAFSA Strategies [#permalink] New post 27 Mar 2009, 10:15
getmeouttahere wrote:
How little do you have to make to qualify for subsidized Stafford loans? I qualified and I am almost positive it was a mistake by the school....

This issue popped up for a few of us at Kellogg who thought we made above the subsidized limit but still qualify, so I'm not really sure how it works.
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Re: FAFSA Strategies [#permalink] New post 15 Nov 2009, 10:22
I ran the FAFSA estimator today and it allowed me to set a custom annual school expense (80G) instead of the predefined 20G. I also experimented with drastically different income and savings amounts and there was barely any difference in the loan amounts. In any case It showed I would be given access to the maximum size of subsidized and unsubsidized Staffort loans.
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Re: FAFSA Strategies [#permalink] New post 08 Jan 2010, 21:52
This is helpful. Thanks!
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Re: FAFSA Strategies [#permalink] New post 03 Feb 2010, 01:09
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Us Department of Education posted a Video on how to fill out the FAFSA Application: http://www.ed.gov/blog/2010/01/tips-for ... the-fafsa/
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Re: FAFSA Strategies [#permalink] New post 03 Feb 2010, 08:01
Just curious, is there such thing as a "deadline" for R2 applicants to file the FAFSA? Or do we first find out where we are accepted and then file the FAFSA to determine financial eligibility? Thanks!
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Re: FAFSA Strategies [#permalink] New post 17 Feb 2010, 16:23
Anyone have any advice for FAFSA when you have been accepted at an R1 school on your list but are waiting to hear (probably until end of March) from some R2 schools? I see general mention of filling out these things early, even before February, but kinda hard when you don't know where you're going.
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Re: FAFSA Strategies [#permalink] New post 17 Feb 2010, 16:46
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You can add multiple schools (up to 10)-I just turned mine in today. Added the school that I will likely be going to, but also the school that waitlisted me and the one that I applied to in Round 2.

Ross gave me a 3/1 deadline and I won't hear from Booth or Sloan until after that, so I just went ahead and added their names.
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Re: FAFSA Strategies [#permalink] New post 17 Feb 2010, 17:31
When I was at Duke last year, they said to fill it out right away after you fill out your taxes even if it's before decisions are out. I assume that holds true for all schools. When you fill it out, it's easy to pick multiple schools like the person above said.
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Re: FAFSA Strategies [#permalink] New post 17 Feb 2010, 17:38
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This is from my understanding. People are welcome to contridict me if they would like. But:

1) the deadlines is a deadlines, but it's a soft deadline.

2) for graduate programs it really doesn't matter (and definitely not for MBA/LAW/MED Program) when we file since we will qualify only for the grad plus and other loans. We don't qualify for grants (apparently we're not impoverish enough).

3) most schools that do need the fafsa only require it to be filled out before you submit it to the school financial aid department, which coincides with a mid-may time frame I believe.
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Re: FAFSA Strategies [#permalink] New post 17 Feb 2010, 18:48
I just submitted mine but then remembered I hadn't contributed the 5k for 2009 to my Roth yet. Should it be legit to amend my FAFSA to reflect this (and maybe make my 2010 contribution now too)?
Re: FAFSA Strategies   [#permalink] 17 Feb 2010, 18:48
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