How You Can Maximize Federal and Free Financial Aid As A Student

Before you consider private student loans, make the most of federal and free financial aid, including private scholarships. You may be eligible for federal Direct Unsubsidized Loans, but there are limits on how much you can borrow each academic year and overall. Annual borrowing limits range from $5,500 to $20,500.

“Your first step in financing your education is to submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid, commonly called a FAFSA,” says Jay S. Fleischman, a lawyer who advises student loan borrowers on effective repayment strategies.

Even if you don’t think you’ll need financial assistance or think you won’t qualify, submit a FAFSA, which is the key to most financial aid. It’s a requirement for the student financial assistance programs authorized under Title IV of the Higher Education Act, including federal loans, grants and work-study programs. These do not have income or GPA cutoffs, which are common myths.


Student Loan Interest Rate Increases

Student loan interest rates increased last month, according to a U.S. News analysis of minimum and maximum APRs reported by private lenders.

Student Loan Interest Rate IncreasesStudent loan rates have trended higher during the past year, with variable rates climbing by…LEARN MORE


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