Filing Your FAFSA Form Online? There’s An App For That.

3rd in a series

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Today I’m featuring a guest post by Jeannie Burlowski, author of the book LAUNCH: How to Get Your Kids Through College Debt-Free and Into Jobs They Love Afterward. You can see over 50 reviews of LAUNCH here.

Are you parenting a student of any age who’ll be in college next fall? If so, one of your most important tasks this year will be to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) as soon after October 1st as possible. This applies to every student and every parent—no exceptions.

Are you convinced that for you, filling out the FAFSA will be a waste of time—because you make far too much money to qualify for any college aid? Check out this article on 7 Reasons to Fill Out FAFSA Even if You’re Rich.

And then get out your smartphone.

As of October 1st, 2018, you can fill out the FAFSA on your phone.

For years, students and parents filling out the FAFSA were required to complete the form using desktop computers. In 2018, though, a new, mobile-friendly version of FAFSA was released.

Here, 8 things you’ll need to know before you fill out the FAFSA on your phone.

A Cautionary Tale About Student Loan Debt

Second in a series

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Every fall I do college planning workshops for parents of college-bound high school students to help them pay less for college. My goal is to give them the tools and information they need to become smarter consumers of a college education so they can make better choices for themselves and their kids.

After one of my presentations a woman came up to me and told me that she wished someone had giver her or her parents this information when she was in school. She went on to say that even as her daughter was about to graduate from high school she was still struggling to pay off her own student loan debt.

Suddenly, the concept of student loan debt became very real, very fast.

The Key Step In Your Action Plan to Pay Less For College

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After 12 years and over 200,000 miles, my wife and I think it may finally be time to move beyond the minivan.

Ideally, we would like to have a vehicle that would hold our family of four plus the occasional additional passenger or two. Since we live in Minnesota, all-wheel drive would be nice especially when we make winter road trips to visit out-of-town family. Throw in at least 4 suitcases, a dog, a cooler and some extras like sleeping bags, fishing gear or Christmas presents, and before you know it we need the equivalent of a small truck just to go to out of town for the weekend.

When I saw the sticker prices for cars that meet our wish list our old minivan suddenly became a lot more attractive. Numbers for a new car ranged from $50,000 to $75,000 or more. Even used vehicles can hover around $50k depending on mileage and extras (like wheels and stuff).

Granted, it’s been a while since we bought a car, but wow.

As expensive as new cars can be, however, it is nothing compared to what some parents could end up paying for their kids’ college educations. In fact, with today’s college sticker prices exceeding $60,000 a year at many schools, paying for college might compare to buying a brand new SUV every year for the next four or five years – for every kid in your house!

That’s a carload of coin.

October 1 kicks off “financial aid season” as it is the first day you can submit your Free Application For Federal Student Aid (aka FAFSA) for the 2019/2020 school year.

My college planning workshop “Pay Less for College” also kicks into high gear this month. For a list of upcoming workshops try clicking here.

Through out the month, I am going to share with you some of my best tips and strategies to help you pay less for college.

No matter what your financial situation or how great of a student you have, the key step in your action plan to pay less for college should be this:

How To Be Cybersafe In An Increasingly Dangerous Cyberworld

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Famed investor Warren Buffet, a decidedly non-techy kind of guy, has publicly stated that cyberattacks may represent a greater threat to humanity than nuclear weapons.

Microsoft estimates that the worldwide cost of cybercrimes could be as high as $500 billion. Others predict that this number could climb into the trillions of dollars in the next few years.

Cybersecurity and the protection of your financial accounts and other digital assets is a growing problem in today’s tech-dependent world.

Watch this 1-minute video to see how many of these basic strategies you are taking to be cybersafe.