The Ultimate 2021 FAFSA Guide:
10 Easy Steps To A Successful And Stress-Free Application
Let’s be real. College isn’t cheap, but you can reduce some of a financial headache by applying for aid. You can receive help from universities, local and federal governments. The first step to see if you qualify for any financial aid is to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or (FAFSA).
To complete the (FAFSA), you will need the following:
✔️ Your Alien Registration Number (if you are not a U.S. citizen)*
✔️ Your federal income tax returns, W-2s, and other records of money earned. (Note: You may be able to transfer your federal tax return information into your FAFSA using the IRS Data Retrieval Tool.)
✔️ Bank statements and records of investments (if applicable)
✔️ Records of untaxed income (if applicable)
✔️ An FSA ID to sign electronically.
* You are a U.S. citizen if you were born in the United States or certain U.S. territories, if you were born abroad to parents who are U.S. citizens, or if you have obtained citizenship status through naturalization. Even though you may not qualify as a U.S. citizen or national, you should still complete the FAFSA because you may qualify for state- or school-funded aid.
You will NEVER ever pay to submit a FAFSA! It’s FREE!
A new FAFSA is available every October so please complete a new one each year to be eligible to receive money for school.
When completing the FAFSA, make sure that you use the buttons at the bottom of the page that say “previous” or “next”. Do NOT use the arrows at the top of the page that point forwards or backwards. You risk losing any information entered and may end up having to start from the beginning.
As you answer each question on the FAFSA, a box will appear to the right that can provide you with more information and guidance if needed.
Once finished, the U.S. Department of Education looks over your submitted information to determine if you qualify for federal student loans or grants. Even if you think there is no chance you are eligible for federal aid, it is still a good idea to fill out the FAFSA and confirm.
Here is a step-by-step FAFSA Guide to help you fill out a FAFSA quickly and efficiently
Create FSA ID
Go To https://fafsa.gov
Step 2: When you land on the page above click “Start A New FAFSA”. In order to proceed you will need your Federal Student Aid ID or (FSA ID).
Start The FAFSA
Step 3: Choose which FAFSA form you’d like to complete. This will change based on the timeframe you are looking to enroll in classes.
Parents: Keep in mind that the FAFSA form is the student’s application, not yours. When the form says “you” or “your,” it’s referring to the student. Be sure and distinguish being asked for student or parent information.
TIP: To get matched with the best online colleges you can click this link and we will match you with your best options.
Next is the “Dependency” section that will determine whether you are considered to be dependent or independent.
If you are asked for information about your parents, then that refers to your birth parents or your adoptive parents only.
If you can answer “yes” to any questions in this section, then you are considered to be independent and will NOT need any parental information.
If you are considered to be a dependent, but you have special circumstances as defined by FAFSA, you may be able to submit your application without your parental financial information.
However, you will need to contact each school you plan to attend and receive additional instructions.
You will be required to provide them with documentation about your special circumstances.
You will be asked to provide their marital status, the number of children they provide support for, and other information regarding their financial status and tax information.
Supply Financial Information
This section applies only to the financial information for the student. You will answer questions about your taxes and finances here.
Sign and Submit FAFSA
You and one of your parents (if required) will sign your FAFSA here using the FSA ID that you created in the beginning. You will need to enter your unique username and password.
Finally, click the button that says “submit my FAFSA now.”
You are then to a confirmation page that lists the colleges you selected as well as the eligibility information.
You will be able to see an estimate of the amount of money that you may receive in Pell grants as well as other loans as needed.
This confirmation page will also be emailed to you.
You are all done!
You are one step closer to realizing your dreams and earning a degree. If you can show the persistence to finish this process, you can do the same throughout your college career. Now, select your college! We are always here to answer any questions you may have. Just message us on FB or via the Website, and we will get back to you as soon as possible.
Alternatively, you can continue to finding a school that meets your wants and needs by going to our degree help page HERE.
Increase Your Federal AID Eligibility
6 Steps to Filling out the FAFSA
Filling out the FAFSA
Start FAFSA application
Apply For Federal Student ID
- If you have special circumstances, make sure you reach out and talk with someone from the college or financial aid office. They can usually help you resolve any questions and will be able to provide more information.
- If you receive any requests for additional information, respond as soon as possible to ensure that your application and the special circumstances and documents can be reviewed before the semester begins.
- There is an online chat feature that connects you with a knowledgeable representative to assist you with answering any questions you might have while filling out the FAFSA.
- You will sign your completed FAFSA with your FSA ID. If a parent is required to submit information for your FAFSA then they will need to sign THEIR part of the FAFSA using their own FSA ID as well.