Some of the top ten reasons why some individuals aren’t successful in their aid applications:
1. Administrative mistakes on the paperwork front - Incomplete application forms or forms which are filled out incorrectly. Mistakes or inconsistencies can be the cause for big problems and even the cause for plain rejections, so you must be very careful not to make these kinds of mistakes.
2. Obtaining financial aid isn’t a sure fact and is absolutely not an easy process, especially not if you are concerned with optimizing the funds and aid which is available to you. You should therefore expect to advocate 20-40 hours of your time in gathering information and facts, even before you fill out or submit any application forms.
3. Making the wrong school choice, due to wrong information or perceptions that some of the prestige schools are either out of their league or financial reach, that then prevents them from applying, missing out on an opportunity. You must try to unearth the insider secrets which could make it possible for you to go after the college and career of your dreams. You must remember that it is possible.
4. Not allocating sufficient time to find out which college has the best comprehensive financial aid and scholarship packages that can address all your requirements and needs.
5. Financial mistakes, such as finding out which assets are included, which are excluded and what the difference is when it comes to financing? Declaring assets that shouldn’t form part of the application form due to lack of knowledge, might reduce the amount of help that you actually receive. Not mentioning all the relevant assets can also put you at a serious risk, including a $20,000 US fine or even prison (or even both).
6. Not grasping how the financial system functions and failing to make the most of it, and getting some value back for all those tax-dollars you have paid into it.
7. It could be a mistake to get a financial expert like a CPA or tax consultant to fill in your college scholarship or funding application form. Try to get a professional familiar with the procedure and system in order to help you out.
8. Not doing your research or delaying the application, almost waiting until it is too late to apply and then hoping for the best, is not a pro-active or strategy which is rewarding. The earlier you start your application process the better it will be. First come, first served is often the motto of these funds, awards and allocations.
9. Thinking that you don’t qualify for financial aid which will lead you to not applying at all and missing out on the opportunity. There are many forms of financial aid, so make sure to capitalize on and explore all of the options which are available to you.
10. Trying to tackle the complex application process by yourself in order to save yourself money on costly fees. Don’t gamble with your future, and get an expert that will help you to figure out both the big picture, but also the little details which can make a difference.
More on the next page: Top Ten Lookouts 2