It’s FAFSA time! Now that you should have received all of your tax documents in the mail…it is time to think about your future. If you have even remotely considered going back to or starting college between July 1, 2013 and June 30, 2014. The new Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is available online. It is FREE to fill out and should be the starting point in determining if you can get assistance to start or go back to college. You must fill out a FAFSA to be considered for student loans or grants.
One of the main things you need to fill out the FAFSA is to have completed filing your taxes for 2012 and have the paperwork handy. What I do when I file my taxes is immediately fill out the FAFSA while my tax return is already on the screen. I make it a part of my tax filing, Federal, then state and then finally FAFSA. Until my FAFSA is completed I do not feel that my taxes are completed.
Remember the FAFSA form is FREE to fill out (if a site asks you to pay LOG OUT ASAP). It WILL require your social security number; however, it is safe and secure. You can also fill out the FAFSA in a PDF form and then mail it in or request a paper FAFSA by calling them at 1-800-4-FED-AID (1-800-433-3243) or 319-337-5665. If you are hearing impaired, you can contact the TTY line at 1-800-730-8913.
There is also no obligation to attend college if you fill out the FAFSA. It will tell you what you may be eligible for and your chosen school(s) will get a student aid report. You can then meet with a school’s financial aid office and see what you qualify for. There are many programs out there that can help you pay for college so if you have considered it…fill out the FAFSA and meet with a school….who knows you may be surprised!
Disclaimer: I took my own advice and in January 2009 I started college at Oklahoma City Community College and I graduated in December with an Associates Degree in Psychology. I am now attending the University of Central Oklahoma to obtain a Bachelor’s in Psychology—at this time I only have 48 hours left until I have that Degree! Trust me it is possible!!