10 Tips for Filling out the FAFSA

The college search is an exciting and sometimes nerve-wracking time—for parents as well as students. There are so many things to do to prepare to send your child off to college. One “to-do list” item many parents dread is completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. We’re here to help alleviate some of that FAFSA anxiety. Keep these tips in mind.


Don’t panic.

It’s not as bad as you think and we’re here to help.


Both you and your student will need an FSA ID.

This allows you to electronically sign the FAFSA and gain access to federal student aid websites. You can get an FSA ID at www.fsaid.ed.gov. Each FSA ID will need a unique email address.


The FAFSA is free.

Don’t pay to submit the form or have anyone complete the form for you. If you need assistance, contact our office. File your FAFSA at: www.fafsa.gov.


You've got all the tax information you need.

The FAFSA uses your information from last year's tax return. You'll have the option to link your tax information directly from the IRS website to save time and increase accurracy. 


Submit your FAFSA early.

The FAFSA is available on October 1. We recommend you complete it when you complete your admission application to ensure you're eligible for all available funds. You can submit your FAFSA at any time, but we recommend you do it early to help you plan.


Have the information you need before you start.

This includes your FSA ID, social security numbers, 2015 federal tax returns –or estimates, bank and brokerage statements.


Make sure both the parent and student sign the FAFSA.

The FAFSA won’t be processed until both the parent and student provide an FSA ID or signature.


Review your Student Aid Report.

This is your confirmation that your FAFSA was processed and provides important follow up information. It also provides instructions on how to update your FAFSA, if needed.


Read email.

Make sure your student reads any email sent by the FAFSA processor or the financial aid office. Requests for additional information will be sent to the email address he or she submitted on the admission application.


Need more help?

Check out this video or contact our office at or 517/629.0440.



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