5 Steps Parents Must Take This Month To Pay Less For College Next Year

My kids started back to school on September 5th, the day after Labor Day. For our family, the day after Labor Day marks a major shift in our calendar – and our thinking!  After a long, fun summer filled with vacations, church camps and time spent with friends and family, it’s back to work, back to school, back to the regular routine. (And some would say, “not a moment too soon.”)

If any of your kids are starting their senior year in high school this year, you need to add, “it’s back to college planning” to that list. With the college financial aid deadlines looming, you need to act fast if you want to get your kids into a school that is not only a good academic fit, but one that is a good financial fit as well.

Don’t Let Student Loan Debt Eclipse Your Kids’ Financial Future

In light of this week’s solar eclipse and the astronomical amount of student loan debt many young people accumulate these days, I thought you might enjoy this re-post from February of 2016. If you are a parent or grandparent with high school or college aged kids and you are struggling with how to pay less for college, download My Favorite College Planning Tools on the right side of this web page, and click the Speaking & Events tab at the top of the page for a list of times and dates of my fall college planning workshops.

The Bridge will return with all new, original content on September 6th.

Student Loan Interest Rates on The Rise

Interest rates for student loans are reset each year. Starting July 1 interest rates for new borrowers of Direct Subsidized and Unsubsidized student loans will rise to 4.45%. That’s up from 3.75% the previous year.

Direct Subsidized Student Loans are those in which the government pays the interest while the student is in school. These loans are available to undergraduate students with financial need. Typically this means the Total Cost of Attendance at the school your student attends exceeds your Expected Family Contribution as determined by the FAFSA form. Even families with fairly high incomes and significant assets may have need at many private colleges and universities.

Before Sending Your Student Off to College, Do This

Imagine the following situation: It’s 10:00 a.m. on a beautiful spring day. The birds are singing. The sun is out – finally! Everything seems right with the world. Standing in line at your favorite coffee shop, you receive a phone call that your daughter was found unresponsive in her dorm room. She has been rushed to the emergency room at a hospital that you have never heard of before.

When you get there the hospital’s medical team refuses to give you any information about her condition or what kind of care she is receiving. They won’t even tell you what is wrong with her. As an adult she has a legal right to privacy that prevents the hospital from disclosing any personal, medical information.

While this may seem unlikely, it can happen. Do you know what you need in order to be involved in her care, now that she’s a legal adult?

How To Say “No” When Your Student Wants to Attend A College You Can’t Afford

gemma-evans-131781May 1 is College Decision Day, the deadline for high school seniors to select the college of their choice. For most families this is a day of celebration, a day to announce to the world (or at least your Facebook friends) where your student intends to spend the next four years of her life.

For some families, however, it’s time to face the stressful reality of paying for college.