File your FAFSA and Apply for the Stafford Loan
Many students every year decide to not go to college or university simply because they cannot afford to pay for their education. They do not have sufficient money to pay for their courses etc and they look for a job instead after finishing high school. They do not realize that there are such things as Stafford loans which they can apply for and that they need to fill in a FAFSA application to obtain a loan. They realize that there are a lot of expenses when you go to school and some people are just daunted by the high cost of everything. Tuition and books are just part of their expenses. Lodging, whether you are in residence or in a home that you share with a number of other students, food, clothing and even a little entertainment are just some of the costs they need to consider.
There are two things people do not always realize:
1) You must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) in order to qualify for federal student help, including the Stafford Loan. There is still time to apply for a loan so get it done online at www.fafsa.ed.gov. Their site is easy to navigate and there are instructions for people to follow if they need help.
2) You are not done once you complete the FAFSA. You then actually need to apply for a Stafford Loan – and any other help you are interested in. Talk with your financial help officer, seek other resources and apply as early as possible.
There also some details that most students need to be aware of when they apply for these loans. We will leave the actual details for review on their web sites, since these requirements and conditions can change from time to time. We will summarize some of them here in this post.
When you are approved for a Stafford loan, students need to realize that this is in fact a loan. While the interest rate may be low and you do not need to be concerned about repayment until after you graduate, students should be aware that the moment they drop out of school this all changes.
For example you have applied for Stafford loans and been approved for a loan over the past several years. For whatever reason, you have decided to stop going to school and look for a job. What many people do not realize is that the moment you stop school the terms of the loan call for repayment to begin. Interest rates may also change as well. Failure to meet these payment terms can actually impact your credit rating and prevent you from applying for and being approved for loans for cars and home mortgages.
FAFSA is free application for student loans. This and Stafford loans are managed by government organizations so it is important to fill in the application carefully and accurately. Any mistakes can jeopardize your loan application and the processing speed with which you will receive your money.
There are specified limits for these loans based on the program you are in, the year you apply, whether you are dependent or independent as a student, the year of your program i.e. whether you are in the 1st, 2nd or 3rd year of your studies. There are also lifetime limits for these loans as well which vary based on the discipline as well as the level of study. Undergraduates receive less than graduate students and professionals who are continuing their education. Graduate and professional students will receive much larger amounts due to their commitment and success at their education.