3 Effective Ways to Slash College Cost

September 20, 2011

3 Effective Ways to Slash College Cost

By J.D. Wyczalek (why-zall-ick) founder of AZCollegePlanning.com
The economy, or lack of it, is in the news daily. The trickle down affect has even hit college campuses and college graduates. The increase in student loan defaults is on an alarming rise. In a Fox Business article it states “According to the Department of Education, 8.8% of all student-loan borrowers defaulted in the last fiscal year, which ended Sept. 30. This is up from 7% in the previous year.”

See the article here http://www.foxbusiness.com/personal-finance/2011/09/13/more-college-grads-defaulting-on-student-loans-filing-bankruptcy/
Student loan default can be alleviated by one simple statement. “Don’t take out any student loans.”
This may sound like an over simplified statement but the reality remains true. So the real question is how do we send our children to college without accumulating piles of student loans? This can be accomplished by these three steps:

  1. Find the right college. Identifying colleges can seem a daunting task. According to the National Center for Educational Statistics, a governmental website, there are 2,719 four-year colleges in the US. Not every college is created equally, some colleges are limping along and some have incredible financial resources at their disposal. For example, Grinnell College has $1.29 Billion dollars at their disposal. Colleges will use these funds to attract students by offering scholarships. Many selective and highly selective colleges have incredible financial resources. The key is getting the student admitted to these types of colleges, which leads me to the second point.
  2. Position the student. While this can be a vague term, the meaning of it is simple. Create a marketable student by examining the 5 categories colleges look for in a student and helping the student in each of these five categories. Of these five categories, the most important and the easiest to control is test scores. Students can learn secret test taking skills that can boost his or her scores. (See the resources tab on my website for further information). Students should maximize the correct extracurricular activities and experience to boost personal resumes.
  3. Arrange parental assets. The federal financial aid form and the institutional financial aid form view assets in a different light. Understanding how each form views income, assets, equity and retirement accounts is the key to getting additional aid. Some families have tried to move assets into a students’ name to minimize parental exposure. The ramifications of trying this failed strategy has left families wondering why it worked on their taxes but killed them from getting any financial aid.

AZCollegePlanning.com can handcrafted these three keys individually to each student which would maximize the amount of scholarships and grants that a student could receive and thereby minimize student loans. One of my clients posted on my Facebook page how excited they were. Mom says “2 years down at a private University and NO DEBT!” When this student graduates in 2 years, she will start her life without being saddled with the enormous burden of student loan debt. This can be done for your student as well.

Contact us today.

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