Financial Aid Tip of the Month, March 2013
Many students find that they must use loans to help pay for a higher education, especially if they’re working on a four-year degree. These tips from the Kentucky Higher Education Assistance Authority (KHEAA) may help lessen the impact of borrowing.
· Submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). You may not think you’ll qualify for federal aid, but the only way to find out is to try.
· Find all the sources of financial aid that don’t have to be paid back first — grants, scholarships and work-study — before turning to loans.
· Borrow only what you need. Remember, you have to repay your loan. If the school’s financial aid package awards you $5,000 in federal loans but you only need $3,000, just borrow the $3,000.
· Use federal student loans first. You’ll generally have more repayment options when it’s time to start making payments.
· If you can, pay the interest on unsubsidized Federal Stafford Loans while you’re in school. Otherwise, the interest will be added to your principal and you’ll end up paying more.
· If you need a private loan, do some research to find the one that best fits your situation. The KHEAA Student Loan Marketplace at www.kheaamarketplace.com can help.
KHEAA is the state agency that administers Kentucky’s student financial aid programs, including the Kentucky Educational Excellence Scholarship (KEES).
To find links to other useful education websites, go to www.gotocollege.ky.gov. For more information about Kentucky scholarships and grants, visit www.kheaa.com; write KHEAA, P.O. Box 798, Frankfort, KY 40602; or call 800-928-8926, ext. 6-7372.