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They divide the EFC by the number of college students, so Child 1's EFC will go down.

 

However, it still isn't likely to get you Federal Aid. You only get that when the EFC (per student) is below $4619.

 

It *may* get you more college-based aid, though.

 

True on the first statement, not so on the second. Pell grants and the like come in with low EFC's like you mentioned, but my guy qualified for a federal subsidized (no interest) loan and federal work study with a higher EFC. Work study got "lost" when he got an outside scholarship, but the college switched it over to college work study (college supplied aid) which was nice for us.

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True on the first statement, not so on the second. Pell grants and the like come in with low EFC's like you mentioned, but my guy qualified for a federal subsidized (no interest) loan and federal work study with a higher EFC. Work study got "lost" when he got an outside scholarship, but the college switched it over to college work study (college supplied aid) which was nice for us.

 

Good to know! Do you know what the upper limit is for Subsidized loans and work-study?

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There are all kinds of numbers on the College Board for each school about "% of students whose full need was met."

 

Ah-ha! That's when those numbers will matter. So it won't matter if dd gets merit aid? So the Bookended Boys are the ones that need huge merit awards and NOT my studious, really bright middle child. She gets money because of her birth location?

 

Oh good night!

 

GIMLETS for ALL! :001_smile: But I can't buy until 2013 when apparently it doesn't matter to me how much they cost anymore.

 

Peace,

Janice

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Good to know! Do you know what the upper limit is for Subsidized loans and work-study?

 

I believe the cut off does depend on the cost of the school in question (but I'm not sure). In our case, our EFC based on last year's income was just under 10,000. (9xxx - a better memory might remember those last three digits, but my memory doesn't.)

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There are all kinds of numbers on the College Board for each school about "% of students whose full need was met."

 

Ah-ha! That's when those numbers will matter. So it won't matter if dd gets merit aid? So the Bookended Boys are the ones that need huge merit awards and NOT my studious, really bright middle child. She gets money because of her birth location?

 

Peace,

Janice

 

Well... it's not quite that easy. The Feds decide how much money a family is supposed to be able to pay for college, but colleges don't have to do anything with that number. Many don't offer aid or "full need" aid (which means all EXCEPT the EFC). This means your $$ amount can be greater than the EFC and is for many schools.

 

Schools can offer as much aid as they like, but they can't offer FEDERAL aid unless the family is meeting the EFC with their contribution. EFC's can be altered/lowered using individual data supplied to the college if there are extenuating circumstances a family feels should be considered (such as caring for a high medical needs person). If a college is offering a full ride (no money needed from the family) it all has to come from their funds unless a family's EFC is 0. When my son won an outside scholarship that put total aid below our EFC, the federal work study had to go - we no longer qualified for it. (They have different cut off numbers that qualify for different types of federal aid apparently as he still qualified for loans.)

 

BIG NOTE: If other people are choosing to support the student with $$, don't send it to the college. If my mom sent money to my son's college to pay for his balance, it WILL LOWER the amount of aid he qualifies for. It DOES NOT get applied to our EFC. Since she chooses to send him the money personally, he can apply it to the EFC. She could send it to him or us and it will count toward the EFC (presumably we COULD use the money elsewhere - it's ours to decide). The same goes for any outside scholarship. The school has no choice since the Feds set the limit for their aid. If aid is from the college itself, they can choose to do as they like.

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Egads, Janice! At least you have the presence of mind to ask these questions. We have:

 

Dd - 2011 (trade school as much as state university)

Ds - 2013

Ds - 2016

 

You really have me regretting my "detox" that includes coffee and gimlets. I am telling you that lentils and beets are not comfort food for the info you are slapping around. Thanks for asking the questions. I've put them off for too long.:grouphug:

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What we were told is that it would not decrease our EFC or qualify any of the kids for federal aid. We'll have all three boys in college at once when the oldest ds is a senior - if he makes it out of college on a four year plan. It might increase college based aid if they all attend the same institution. Many colleges do not take into account other sibs in college if they are not in the same school. A few schools do take it all into account.

 

Merit based aid is all we can look forward to. That said, most merit based aid is for tuition only and colleges charge as much for room and board as they do for tuition. So, the best we could hope for, a full ride tuition scholarship, still leaves us with half the cost each year if the student lives away from home.

 

If all three boys were interested in attending the same school and they all got in to the same one, then when ds number two is set to start, we'd probably rent a small apartment for the boys - an efficiency and they can sleep in the living room - because it would actually be cheaper than the dorms. Many of the state schools in Michigan are charging $1000.00 per month per student for dorms. Private schools in multiple locales were no better.

 

Faith

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Janice,

 

Please do not make the mistake that I did. I didn't fill out the FAFSA for ds during his sr yr of high school. It was a HUGE mistake. I knew he didn't qualify for any aid/loans, etc based on the worksheet we completed, so I didn't see any need to fill out the FAFSA. Well, guess what? ALL merit scholarships at the university, even those completely independent of need, required the FAFSA to be filled out. So the university scholarship that he could have received......he didn't. :tongue_smilie:

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I have a little time right now... (on break in school ;)).

 

Let's assume a family's EFC is 15,000.

 

For one student in college, a college can't offer federal aid until the student and family have paid $15,000 toward their college year ($7500 per semester). If the college's total costs are $40,000, then $25,000 in aid can be offered in the form of grants, loans, or work study. The family will not qualify for federal grants (Pell, etc), but might on the other parts. Note: this is "can be offered," not, "will be offered."

 

For two students in college (different colleges ok), then each student will have an EFC of $7500. A college can offer up to $32,500 in aid in various forms including federal. Each student is likely to qualify for federal subsidized loans, unsubsidized loans, and work study. There's an upper limit to each of these.

 

For three students in college (different colleges ok), then each student will have an EFC of $5000. The rest applies.

 

Each college will decide how much aid each student will get. If they want to give any full rides, they can, but they can't use Federal aid to do so. Some colleges will meet need (all but the EFC). Some will do that without loans (but less of these are doing that). Some won't promise to meet need. Colleges tend to use their aid to get the "best" students they can or to promote majors they want to promote, or to provide diversity (geographical and otherwise). If you are/have the student they want, it can work out nicely. If they have a gazillion students applying for that major from your home town/state, etc, then it might not work out so well.

 

All you can do is apply and see what happens (and do some research to see which colleges are better are providing aid than others).

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Merit aid is a beautiful thing.

 

Really generous merit aid is amazing.

 

Do check out different colleges' merit aid awards.

 

Some colleges award more smaller sums of merit aid. For example, dd received several generous merit aid awards that made no difference to our out-of-pocket costs. She just received a nice merit aid grant instead of a nice financial aid grant. Finding out that merit aid was subtracted from the financial aid (depending on the school) before reducing the out-of-pocket costs did NOT make us happy!

 

Some colleges award fewer larger sums of merit aid. This is where the full-tuition scholarships and the full-ride scholarships come into play. They are the ones that allow parents to continue paying into the retirement account while junior is in college. They are the awards that allow the parents to imagine being able to send all the kids to college.

 

If you think your child could possibly be eligible for the "big bucks" merit scholarships, look around carefully and see which schools offer them.

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Merit aid is a beautiful thing.

 

Really generous merit aid is amazing.

 

Do check out different colleges' merit aid awards.

 

Some colleges award more smaller sums of merit aid. For example, dd received several generous merit aid awards that made no difference to our out-of-pocket costs. She just received a nice merit aid grant instead of a nice financial aid grant. Finding out that merit aid was subtracted from the financial aid (depending on the school) before reducing the out-of-pocket costs did NOT make us happy!

 

Some colleges award fewer larger sums of merit aid. This is where the full-tuition scholarships and the full-ride scholarships come into play. They are the ones that allow parents to continue paying into the retirement account while junior is in college. They are the awards that allow the parents to imagine being able to send all the kids to college.

 

If you think your child could possibly be eligible for the "big bucks" merit scholarships, look around carefully and see which schools offer them.

 

:iagree: and this is why I feel it is well worth the time and effort to try to do well on the PSAT/SAT/ACT as well as on the GPA.

 

We're looking mainly for merit aid for middle son 'cause if our personal economy recovers, need-based aid will disappear and all of the "increase" in our income will pay for college. I wouldn't mind that if we still had our savings from before, but the savings we lost won't reappear. Middle son is the one who is high enough academically to possibly get his undergrad for free. That will allow us to save for youngest son or for med school for middle son if he continues to want to go that route.

 

However, since our personal economy IS down, the need-based aid (in addition to merit aid for oldest) has been a gift from above and the "lessons" I've learned about it I don't mind sharing with others.

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BIG NOTE: If other people are choosing to support the student with $$, don't send it to the college. If my mom sent money to my son's college to pay for his balance, it WILL LOWER the amount of aid he qualifies for. It DOES NOT get applied to our EFC. Since she chooses to send him the money personally, he can apply it to the EFC. She could send it to him or us and it will count toward the EFC (presumably we COULD use the money elsewhere - it's ours to decide). The same goes for any outside scholarship. The school has no choice since the Feds set the limit for their aid. If aid is from the college itself, they can choose to do as they like.

 

From what I've read, I'm not sure you have this right. I believe that there is a space on the FAFSA where students are asked to report any monies paid on their behalf or other sources of income. If grandma gave them money that they used for college fees, I think they have to report that. However, the FAFSA apparently does not ask the parents to report any money paid on their behalf. Parents have to report income and assets. So if grandma wants to help out with junior's tuition, it's best for her to give the money to the parents and then for them to send it to the college. The money will not be in the parent's account when they file the next FAFSA and they won't have to report it. There are restrictions, however, on how much they can give the parents before federal gift taxes kick in. So complicated.....

 

Brenda

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As the others said, once more than one child is in college, the EFC gets split among the kiddos in college. But -- I've read that some private colleges expect the parents to pay more than the strict split percentage, e.g. 55 or 60% of EFC for each of 2 kids.

 

The other big thing is, as you mentioned, how generous a particular college is. There are very few that purport to meet 100% of need after EFC. Most colleges gap, or offer less than your need as determined by the difference between the Cost of Attendance and your EFC.

 

It's so, so hard, and really scary to try and project how all this will work out several years into the future and with several kiddos -- as you've explained well. There are so many variables, many that you cannot control -- each kids test scores, the state you live in, how generous a particular college is feeling this year, if the student has the credentials for very generous merit aid.....

 

I guess the bright side, if there is one, and I like to think that there is, is that you have several more months to ponder over your options until you know the choices that are workable for the oldest guy. Maybe that's not a bright side.... I know I hate waiting and I hate uncertainty even more.

 

I don't know what else to say except that you're not alone...

 

Brenda

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There are restrictions, however, on how much they can give the parents before federal gift taxes kick in. So complicated.....

 

Brenda

 

Last time I checked, it was $10,000 per person... meaning Grandma could give $10k to wife, and $10k to husband... each year... without hitting the tax, oh, and she could give another $10k to the child. And if Grandpa is still living, he can give $10k to mother, $10k to father and $10k to child. Just make sure checks are all made out properly :D

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Last time I checked, it was $10,000 per person... meaning Grandma could give $10k to wife, and $10k to husband... each year... without hitting the tax, oh, and she could give another $10k to the child. And if Grandpa is still living, he can give $10k to mother, $10k to father and $10k to child. Just make sure checks are all made out properly :D

 

It's supposed to be $13,000 now - not that we're anywhere near hitting it though. :D I read that in our local paper no more than a Sunday or two ago.

 

If Brenda was correct that kiddo would need to admit money he was given, we're still ok. My mom gave the money to us... BUT it's good to know for the future.

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Let's assume a family's EFC is 15,000.

 

For one student in college, a college can't offer federal aid until the student and family have paid $15,000 toward their college year ($7500 per semester). If the college's total costs are $40,000, then $25,000 in aid can be offered in the form of grants, loans, or work study. The family will not qualify for federal grants (Pell, etc), but might on the other parts. Note: this is "can be offered," not, "will be offered."

 

For two students in college (different colleges ok), then each student will have an EFC of $7500.

 

For three students in college (different colleges ok), then each student will have an EFC of $5000.

 

I am not sure this is accurate. This is not how it has worked out in our family. We have three dc in college. Our EFC has never been divided between our dc. Each dc has an EFC that is almost the same. I think the difference is how much each dc has earned from working since their earnings factor into the formula.

 

One dc started college with an EFC of X. The next started college and ended up with about the same EFC of X, not X divided by 2. We thought the EFC would decrease with an additional child in college, but it didn't. Once our third dc started college and completed the FAFSA, the EFC was about the same as for the other two dc. It did not decrease with more dc in college, nor did the EFC get divided by the number of dc in college.

 

Our EFC started out as X, then went to X times 2, then went to X times three. Unfortunately, income remained about the same during these years. Having more dc in college just multiplied our EFC. We can't even pay one dc's EFC, much less three times as much.

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I am not sure this is accurate. This is not how it has worked out in our family. We have three dc in college. Our EFC has never been divided between our dc. Each dc has an EFC that is almost the same. I think the difference is how much each dc has earned from working since their earnings factor into the formula.

 

One dc started college with an EFC of X. The next started college and ended up with about the same EFC of X, not X divided by 2. We thought the EFC would decrease with an additional child in college, but it didn't. Once our third dc started college and completed the FAFSA, the EFC was about the same as for the other two dc. It did not decrease with more dc in college, nor did the EFC get divided by the number of dc in college.

 

Our EFC started out as X, then went to X times 2, then went to X times three. Unfortunately, income remained about the same during these years. Having more dc in college just multiplied our EFC. We can't even pay one dc's EFC, much less three times as much.

 

Ok, I'm not there yet, so I'll freely admit this info came from what I was told on College Confidential's site. I guess I'll be finding out our situation in a little over a year. Then I'll know whichever way it goes from actual experience - for better or worse. I think I'm glad middle son is my guy with the highest academics of my three...

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First of all, your kid's money, however it is received, is computed at a high rate. So if they worked and are no longer working but have savings, it is computed at around 25% per year since they should work it down to zero at the end of four years. Then while parent income is slightly shielded and then done as a percentage, a student's income, even if low, is considered to just be mostly going to college so about 50% of it is put into the EFC. Remember, the EFC includes everyone in your family's contribution.

 

I am not trusting the calculators since it got it so terribly wrong for us on FAFSA but none the less I do think with many of us, the EFC increases somewhat with more kids in college if not a lot.

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.... AND ds will be attending community college 1/2 time next year as a high school senior, for which we do have to pay fees, but do we file a FAFSA for him, too? ACK - so confused.

 

 

My understanding is that you only do a FAFSA for a student who is or is soon to be a high school graduate and is applying for aid as a college student (so not for a dual enrolled student). That said, the year that your student is a full time college student (in the fall), you are able to claim all college tuition paid (even if some of it occurred when your child was finishing up his senior year of high school). So, when it comes time to pay community college fees for the January term that takes place in his senior year, try to pay in January not in December.

 

Regards,

Kareni

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