(WTNH)– While the little kids worry about candy corn and chocolate, make sure the older kids don’t get tricked out of money for their future. We are stretching your dollar with four common mistakes that can cost you when filling out that FAFSA.
The FAFSA form became available on Oct. 1. If you’re smart you’ll fill it out early, just make sure you have the correct website! That’s one common error. There are a lot of look-alike scam sites out there. Remember, the FAFSA is free and does not require a payment.
Not filing early is another mistake. Money.com says a lot of financial aid offered through states and colleges is first-come, first-serve. the earlier you fill out the FAFSA, the better your odds of receiving grants, scholarships and the option for work-study.
Misusing loans is another. Money says just because you’re approved for loans doesn’t mean you have to take them or take the full amount. Often, students simply take whatever they’re offered in loans, without calculating how much they’ll actually need.
Only filling out the form once, remember this is not a “one and done.” You have to do it each year you’re in school. The good news is it’s quicker after you’ve done it once. You just have to update information in the years that follow.
That was four but misunderstanding the form is another. As you fill yours out, take a moment to really research what it could provide.