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How To Save Money On College

Part 1 of 2

Make Your Education Dream a Reality
In today's economy finding a decent paying job is difficult. This is especially true if you have little to no secondary education. Individuals longing to meet their income goals and their dreams of a long term career must add college or some kind of post high school education into their plans. However, everyone knows education costs money, a lot of it, and that economy right now leaves a lot to be desired. Yet school doesn't have to be a pipe dream, you CAN attend school, meet your goals and land a more fulfilling job. It takes work, time and effort, but by identifying the right programs, aid and best practices, you will be well on your way. Here are a few ways that you can save money on school!

Grants
Grants are one of the best ways to save out of pocket on college. This free money is financial aid that does not have to be paid back. Grants are often need based. To apply for government grants you must fill out the Federal Application for Student Aid (FAFSA).

There are often times also ways to receive grants if you are ineligible for federal grants. Many state governments provide grant funds for those attending local colleges. Private organizations may also offer grants for students. Additionally, there are grants specific to minorities, women and for specific courses of study.

Scholarships
Scholarships are a great way to save money on college tuition! They are merit based, meaning those with good grades, or those who have shown some sort of good work ethic, or other merit are often the ones who receive scholarships. However, there are many different types of scholarships available, so don't give up! Scholarships can come from the federal government, state government, your college, high school, or private and nonprofit organizations. Scholarships often have deadlines to apply, so be sure to research and apply accordingly.

Avoid Unnecessary Debt
One thing that often gets many students in trouble in college is debt! Don't abuse credit! Credit cards should be used responsibly, especially if you are trying to save money. Before purchasing anything with a credit card makes sure it fits into your budget and that you are able to pay it off when the bill arrives each month. This saves you from paying interest, and getting you into debt that you may have trouble paying back long after college is over.

Another debt to avoid is private loans for college. Students who are looking to save money in college should always opt for federal loans first. They will have lower interest rates and better borrower benefits.