What You Need to Know when Applying for Financial Aid

Aside from going over several personal statement examples for their writing their admission essay, students should also seek information on how they can best qualify for financial aid.  For many students who are trying to get through college, financial aid is one of their best friends.  With a little help from scholarships and grants, students can worry a little less about how to pay for their tuition and instead focus more on their studies at hand.  Basically, financial aid helps students pay for tuition, room and board, books and supplies, as well as other school fees.(1)  Here are some helpful information that they should know:

Freshmen have a better chance at getting good offers

Usually, freshmen have a better chance at getting good financial aid offers.  This is normally the case, because many school have specific financial aid programs for incoming first-year students.  Since freshmen still have a good four or more years of study in the school, they can be given long-term financial aid plans at lower rates.  This information shouldn’t discourage non-freshman students from finding a good deal, though.

You can negotiate for a better package

Perhaps the best way to get the most out of a financial aid deal is to negotiate.  Most lenders are willing to strike a deal with you, but they will probably wait for you to make the first negotiations.  There are a number of ways in which you can negotiate your financial aid.  One way is to ask for lower interest rates, which can shave off  a considerable amount from the fees and costs of your loan.  You can also try to get a longer grace period on your repayment schedule, so that you have more time to work out how you’re going to pay your bills.  Also, you can negotiate for a higher loan in case the initial offer made by the lender is not enough to pay for your schooling fees.(2)  What other students do is get ideas from personal statement examples so they can provide details in their admission essays on how they want to acquire college education despite their financial situation.

Students should not accept the first offer but should wait until they get accepted to more schools

Another strategy is to wait until you are accepted to more schools before finalizing your loan deals.  While waiting for a better offer, what applicants can do is to learn as much as they can from well-written examples of personal statement so they can have better chances of getting admitted to more colleges and universities.  A personal statement example can help boost your applications even if you don’t have excellent grades.

When it comes to federal loans, it is important for you to wait until you are accepted to more schools, because these loans are often linked to the school that you are attending.  You will then have more leverage to negotiate your financial aid. Just remember not to wait for too long, otherwise you may lose all your chances as you get closer to deadlines for financial aid applications.(3)

(1)  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Student_financial_aid
(2)  http://www.finaid.org/fafsa/negotiation.phtml
(3)  http://www.chaminade.edu/financial_aid/

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