Financial Aid Roundup: Federal vs. Private Loans and 10 Tips to Get More Aid
This week, folks are starting to feel the pressure as the FAFSA application deadline nears (psst, that’s June 30th), and that sentiment is echoed in the first article of this week’s Financial Aid Roundup.
A recent study by FinAid found that students aren’t completing the FAFSA, likely because it’s too complex to fill out. Your financial aid options are limited if you opt to do without the FAFSA application, as many (if not most) scholarships, grants and federal loans require its completion. This study found the number of students who only took out private loans jumped by 27% a year over the last decade. Some 60% of undergraduates, and nearly 90% of graduate students, who took out only private loans did not complete the FAFSA. Private student loans typically have variable interest rates and fewer repayment options than federal loans.
On July 1, the interest rate for new subsidized Stafford loans for undergraduate students will drop to 5.6% from the current rate of 6%. This rate, which applies to loans issued between July 1 and June 30, 2010, will remain in effect for the life of the loan. Subsidized Stafford loans are available for borrowers who demonstrate financial need. Sandra Block, personal finance columnist, also outlines the potential for borrowers of old loans to see lower rates as well, and reminds readers of the difference between federal and private loans.
U.S. News & World Report:10 Tips for Getting More Financial Aid
If you didn’t get the financial aid amount you were hoping for, here are 10 tips for getting more, compiled by columnist Kim Clark. Colleges and universities are being flooded with a record number of appeals for more financial assistance, and the good news is that these appeals are being granted, considering how drastically the financial landscape has changed over the last year.