Scholarship Hunting 101:  Proven Strategies for Securing College Funds

Scholarship Hunting 101: Proven Strategies for Securing College Funds

Finding scholarships can significantly reduce the cost of college, and the sooner you start, the better. Scholarships are free money that doesn't need to be paid back, and summer is an excellent time for your high schooler to focus on the search without the distractions of schoolwork. As a parent, your role is to provide guidance and support. Encourage your high schooler to take the lead in the application process, but be there to help with research, proofreading, and keeping track of...

Unlock Affordable College:  Non-Traditional Strategies to Cut Costs

Unlock Affordable College: Non-Traditional Strategies to Cut Costs

Sending your teen to college can be one of the biggest financial challenges you face as a parent. While scholarships and financial aid are helpful, they often aren't enough to cover all the costs. However, there are other ways to manage college expenses that you might not have considered. Let's explore some non-traditional approaches to make higher education more affordable. The Community College Advantage Starting at a community college can save a lot of money. Community colleges usually cost...

Talking To Your Teen About College Tuition and What You Can Afford

Talking To Your Teen About College Tuition and What You Can Afford

With college costs soaring, discussing tuition with your teen has never been more critical. As parents, it's essential to approach this topic with transparency, empathy, and practical advice. Too many parents wait until after their teen is accepted into college to figure out finances or, worse, go into unnecessary debt. Let’s change that! Here’s how to have a productive and empowering conversation about college finances with your teen: 1. Start Early The earlier you begin discussing college...

A Detailed Walkthrough on Completing the FAFSA

A Detailed Walkthrough on Completing the FAFSA

In our recent blog post, "Demystifying FAFSA for Parents: Everything You Need to Know," we laid the groundwork for understanding the significance and basics of FAFSA. Today's post will build upon that knowledge and walk you through filling out the FAFSA. From gathering the necessary documents to navigating the sections of the application, we aim to make this essential task as straightforward as possible. You may have heard or experienced that filling out the FAFSA form takes hours. The good...

Demystifying FAFSA for Parents: Everything You Need to Know

As a parent, preparing for your teen's higher education can be as exciting as it is daunting. One of the most crucial aspects of this preparation is understanding how to finance this education. That's where FAFSA – the Free Application for Federal Student Aid – comes in. If you've never heard of it or have only a vague idea of what it is, you're in the right place. What is FAFSA? FAFSA stands for Free Application for Federal Student Aid. It's the primary form that the federal government,...

A Debt-Free Approach to Higher Education

A Debt-Free Approach to Higher Education

In previous articles, I talked about how summertime is the best time to work on planning your teen’s future. There are many different tasks you and your teen can take on. Click here to read Post-High School Planning: What Your Teen Needs to Do Now, where I share several ideas. An important step in planning is to determine how you’re going to pay for your teen’s post-secondary education. A parent reached out to me after her teen got accepted to her dream school, asking for my help with finding...

The Cost of College – Sticker Price vs. Net Price

The Cost of College – Sticker Price vs. Net Price

Despite a long-term increase, college enrollment has fallen over the past decade. There's a widespread perception that college tuition is too expensive. For most of the US, college tuition has outpaced inflation. Blame has been placed on a decline in state aid to colleges, as well as an increase in administrative staff. More employees = more costs.  As a parent, you can’t stop colleges from raising prices, but you can better understand what components make up the overall cost and how to reduce...

A Career Decision That Turned into $80,000 in Debt

A Career Decision That Turned into $80,000 in Debt

A parent shared with me that her first child, John, always wanted to be an anesthesiologist. Ever since he was in middle school, John was sure that was the career he wanted. The parents felt confident about his choice because that was what he wanted to do for so many years. So, their son went to college to be an anesthesiologist. But, a couple years into college, he realized he didn’t like anesthesiology. There were parts of the studies and the career John didn't love. He just wasn’t...