There’s actually a SECOND form of financial aid you might be eligible for, which can be responsible for handing you a great education at an even cheaper cost.

For most families, filling out the Federal Application for Student Aid (FAFSA) is one of the necessary pains of applying for college. After all, if you want a penny of the government’s money in helping you pay your student’s tuition, the FAFSA form is required work. But believe it or not, once you submit it, you may only be half the way towards getting all the financial aid you can.

That’s because there’s a SECOND form you can complete in order to qualify for non-Federal financial aid at over 600 universities nationwide. This is money doled out by the colleges themselves not government funds. And in order to receive any of it, you’ll have to get your hands on the College Scholarship Service Profile.

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A Unique Opportunity

You won’t find this anywhere else in the college planning space. It’s an inside look at your college funding situation with an authorized college funding advisor-absolutely free.

I’ll help you figure out where you stand, including whether or not you can lower your expected family contribution (EFC), and maximize your eligibility for financial aid. What’s more, you set the date and time for the call.

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The CSS Financial Aid Profile is an application distributed by the College Board for scholarships and programs offered by individual schools. And depending on whether or not the school you’re applying to is able to award these types of grants, the CSS Profile is definitely worth your time to fill out, despite a couple of things:

While the FAFSA form is free to submit, there is a fee to submit the CSS Financial Aid Profile. There is a $25 registration fee, and it will cost $16 per school to where you will be submitting the CSS Financial Aid Profile. If you’re eligible, however, you can request a limited number of fee waivers from your high school’s guidance office.

Since the CSS Financial Aid Profile is used to hand out private scholarships, the schools offering them are allowed to consider other factors that the FAFSA form can’t under federal law. That means when determining your expected family contribution the school will be using what we call institutional methodology.

 

That institutional methodology includes things like your home equity. FAFSA does not factor your home equity into your assets, which brings your EFC down, but the CSS Profile, on the other hand, may.

Other financial information the CSS Profile can investigate include insurance contract values and retirement values. As you can probably tell, applying for these scholarships can leave your assets much more exposed than when dealing with the government.

If you’re applying to a school that offers these types of private aid and you feel you stand a good chance at qualifying for it, it’s worthwhile to apply. But I highly recommend that you speak to a qualified college planning consultant to learn about all the ways you can avoid the pitfalls of the CSS Profile.

Every little bit of financial aid helps, no doubt. Just ensure you’re applying for it in the best way possible.