View Full Version : What the hell is the FAFSA? And why do I need to file it?

07-06-2015, 05:27 PM
The FAFSA : Fecking Awful Futile Scholarship Application
Is better (and more accurately) known as: The Free Application for Federal Student Aid

Q: What is it, and who fills it out?

A: Everyone who is going to college or career school fills it out to access State, Federal, and institution based funding. Here’s a cool little video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c-23SMf5DyQ#t=55

If your kid is going to college, you should send this thing in ASAP in the spring of the year in which your kid will begin college in the fall (spring of their senior year). Be sure to check the deadlines in your state, as they vary a bit. Some funds are given out first come, first serve….so it’s important to get this thing in as soon as you can each year!

Q: I’m supposed to get this thing in by March 1st….but it asks for Tax information. What if my taxes aren’t done yet?

A: You can submit it with estimates, and correct them as soon as you know the exact amounts. The important thing is to have SOMETHING turned in by the state deadlines for your best chance at state funding in addition to federal funding. It’s totally ok to use estimates.

Q: But we’re not poor, and we’re not gonna get any money….so why bother?

A: You might be surprised what’s available to you. They’re going to offer you something. Even if it’s just a few hundred dollars or federal loans with really good terms…you’re going to get something. Also, most schools that offer scholarships (even academic ones) won’t consider you for them without a current FAFSA in their file (yes, you have to file one every year). If you have doubts about whether you should apply, read this https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/sites/default/files/financial-aid-myths.pdf

Q: It costs money to have someone fill out a FAFSA for you.

A: It shouldn’t! The first F stands for FREE. The FAFSA is 100% free to file. There are a lot of sites on the web that like to take advantage of people by offering to file your FAFSA for a fee. Don’t do it! It only takes about 25 minutes to fill the thing out and you can submit it yourself at https://fafsa.ed.gov/ (if the website isn’t .gov you’re in the wrong place).

07-06-2015, 05:47 PM
FAFSA money is also a sliding scale. If you go to a major university that's more $$$, you get more $. If you go to a community college, you get less $$. It works out in the end. I've done the FAFSA 3-4 times and always received enough to cover school 100%...including the godawfully-priced text books. What many people don't realize is that any funds that are left over after your tuition and books are paid for comes back to you in the form of a check. That money can be used for calculators, software, a computer, gas to get to and from school or bus fare, babysitters, etc. ANYTHING you may NEED in order to attend school.

Homeschooling Librarian
07-06-2015, 07:13 PM
And they aren't that hard to fill out. I did all seven of mine, and while it's been twelve years since I filled out my last one, I'm pretty sure I could knock it out.