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Applying for a Student Loan: A Beginner’s Guide

As we all know, school can be very expensive. And with millions of Americans now out of work due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, more than half of college students across the country say they can no longer afford their tuition fees. According to a report, some students have not enrolled in universities or colleges to seek alternative education options or full-time employment instead.

Thankfully, banks and other nonprofit organizations offer student loans. These financial aids are a big help, especially for students with fewer financial resources. So, how does one apply for a student loan?

Fill Out the Government’s FAFSA

The first step students need to do when applying for a loan is to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid or FAFSA. The students will be asked to provide their income and investments, as well as their parents’. After calculating the students’ Expected Family Contributions or EFC, the government can determine how much money the students need to pay for college.

Check and Understand Student Loan Options

Students have two main options—federal and private loans. Both of these types of loans provide temporary funding assistance. The main difference is that a federal student loan comes from the government (U.S. Department of Education), while a private loan comes from institutions like banks, credit unions, and other organizations.

 

While some students choose to apply only for federal student loans, others apply for both federal and private loans. This usually happens when the federal loan isn’t enough to cover a student’s expenses.

 

Review the Award Letter

Once the students have completed the FAFSA and are accepted into college, schools will send them a financial aid award letter. This contains what federal student loans are available and the aid students are eligible to receive.

The students should review the award letter first to check if a federal loan is what they really need. When they have decided to accept the loan, all they have to do is sign the letter and return it to the school financial aid office.

 

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If you’re looking for quality college planning resources, consider visiting Rockbrook Village. We have a nonprofit organization at our shopping complex that is ready to assist you in college planning and more. Contact us now!










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