Financial aid packages are generally determined by the information you provide on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. The FAFSA determines eligibility for federal grants and loans, but most schools also use it to calculate your ability to pay college costs.
Check for errors. Filling out a FAFSA,WASFA which involves answering more than 100 questions, can be complicated. Make sure there are no mistakes.
Understand special circumstance reviews. You can ask for one if your financial situation has changed in the past two years or if there is anything that differentiates you from a typical family. Common special circumstances include job loss, having special needs children, or a change in parents' marital status. But financial aid administrators have latitude when it comes to determining what has an impact on a family's finances.
Discuss other options. Grants and scholarships are the best aid to get because you don't have to pay them back. But there are other ways you could improve a financial aid package. Work-study jobs are also part of financial aid offers. They're beneficial because they are exempt from some federal taxes and aren't counted as income on the FAFSA. A school may be able to grant a work-study job in place of a loan.
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