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The Pros and Cons of Common Financial Aid Options


 

A special thanks to Carrington College, today’s guest blogger.

 

tip jar with note about student debt

 

College can be pricey, especially when you consider the fact that you not only need to pay for tuition but also textbooks, rent, extra-curricular activities, transportation, food and entertainment.

Thankfully, as Carrington.edu points out, there are various forms of financial aid at your disposal.

 

Scholarships

Scholarships are available from a host of companies, educational institutions, organizations and even communities. You don’t have to repay the money you receive; however, there are requirements for getting funding. For example, you typically need to meet GPA requirements. Furthermore, some scholarships are only available to certain groups of people (i.e. women, individuals of a particular ethnicity, people living in a particular geographic area, etc.).

Grants

Grants, like scholarships, do not need to be repaid. You can obtain one or even more grants from your college, state or the federal government. Even so, grants are very competitive and there is no guarantee you will receive the money for which you are applying. Factors that have a bearing on the success rate of any application include financial need and attendance costs.

College Loans

Student loans must be repaid with interest. Federal loans offer flexible repayment plans and you don’t have to start repaying the loan until after you graduate. However, you may not be able to borrow as much money as you need and financial need does play a role in determining whether or not you can take out a Federal loan. Private loans tend to have higher interest rates but are available to anyone who has a good credit score. What is more, there is normally no set limit on how much you can borrow.

What’s Right for You?

It is wise to take cost into consideration when choosing post-secondary education. You want to carefully assess costs before you begin studying so you know how much money you will need every semester. It is also a good idea to pursue as many financial aid options as you can. Remember, having sufficient money to complete your major will allow you to focus on your studies.



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