When you want to further your education by attending a college or university, there are numerous costs that need to be addressed. Included in these items are tuition, fees, books and incidental cost, and when you are away from home there is also room and board in the mix. The College Board says that the cost of college for this past year was an average of $11,000 for a two-year college and $14,000 for a four-year college. For private universities the costs were over double that amount just for one year. An increase is expected in these figures of 5-8% due to the rate of inflation. Scholarships and student loans are frequently one of the essential keys to guarantee a successful education. There are numerous places to find loans in order to help you get the education that you desire.
A very familiar way of acquiring funds needed for an education is through federal aid, which is a loan that is obtained through a government agency such as a Stafford Loan. There is more than $67 billion dollars available in loans through federal lending programs.
When you receive a government loan there are numerous things that must be done. A number of applications have to be filed, once done you will go through a process that will grant you a specified amount for the school year. In order to meet the criteria set for receiving financial aid you must have a high school diploma, be enrolled in college for a minimum amount of hours, maintain a certain grade point average and be a U.S. Citizen.
One of the government loans available is the Federal Stafford Loan. Once you qualify, there is a specified amount of money available for you. You will not have to start repaying this money for 6 months after you have left or graduated school. Another loan option is the subsidized loan. These are based on what the financial need of the student is. When a student is enrolled at least halftime in class and has a need for financial help, they automatically qualify for a subsidized loan. Then you have the unsubsidized loan, which is not dependent on financial need. This loan requires that the student or in most cases the parent to pay a specific amount of the loan within a certain amount of time.
There are also loans that you can get that are campus-based aid programs. These programs are sometimes grants given by the facility. These funds are received from federal funds, which have been given to the school, and they school can divide the money however they wish. Receiving this type of assistance qualifies you for work-study programs, where you have a job on campus. You could also qualify for a Federal Perkins Loan which is also dependent on what your needs are and how much the school has to give.
You can go online to the FAFSA website and apply for all the available government loans. For an application to be considered for the upcoming year, they must be in by the beginning of March.
Beginning this process will help you to find out which government loans will work for you. When there is a match for you, you will receive a letter informing you which loans are available to you and in what amounts. It is your choice which of the loans you accept, it can be none or all.
In addition to the government loans there are numerous private loans offered to student for which you can apply. In most cases, these loans will have a low starting interest rate, which can get higher later on. This is a way of obtaining any remaining money that you may need to pay for your education when there is not enough coming from a federal loan that you have applied.
Loans that you can obtain which are offered by the governments and private lenders are one of the ways available for you to attend the college or university of your dreams and get the education that you desire.