Nov. 28, 2018
It's the dreaded form everyone going to college should fill out, the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
Anyone going to college in the fall of 2019 should be submitting their FAFSA application now. The filing window opened October 1. Filing earlier gives you a better chance at getting financial help.
Mark Kantrowitz, publisher of SavingforCollege.com, likes to point out that you can't get money if you don't apply.
"You should apply for financial aid every single year, even if you got nothing other than loans last year,” he said. “That’s because the formulas are complicated and simple changes, like the number of children in college at the same time, can have a big impact on the amount of aid for which you are eligible."
Filing the FAFSA form should be easier now.
The Department of Education has a new mobile app called myStudentAid. You'll find it at the Apple App Store and Google Play. The FAFSA.gov website has also been redesigned to let you fill out the application on mobile devices.
Nothing can make the process easy, but Consumer Reports says the new online application is "more user-friendly,” with simpler language and help boxes for each question.