College Students: Did You File Your FAFSA Yet?

God knows how many college students read this thing, but if you’re out there, file your FAFSA. Do it now. Why do it early? The money is doled out on a first come first served basis. You snooze you get another job at Hardee’s.

Some FAFSA Tips:

1) Filing electronically is faster. “The process may be as much as 14 days faster if you use your PIN to electronically sign your application as soon as you complete it. Submitting your FAFSA using FAFSA on the Web eliminates delays that can occur from mailing. Also, FAFSA on the Web checks your application to be sure the information you transmit to the U.S. Department of Education is ready to be processed.”

2) Your parent’s tax deductions can affect the amount of aid you receive, so make sure they’re on top of that stuff.

3) Don’t pay anyone to fill out your FAFSA. Ask your college financial aid office to help you. Ours helped us!

FAFSA FAQ [Department of Education]


Edit Your Comment

  1. AColeslaw says:

    Plenty of college students read this, or at least I do. Please keep the tips coming! Thanks!

  2. Phil says:

    “The process may be as much as 14 days faster if you use your PIN to electronically sign your application as soon as you complete it.”

    Yeah, good luck. I’ve requested mine via email three times, and via postal mail once. NOT ONCE has it gotten to me.

  3. Art Vandelay says:

    I graduated last semester, but did a FAFSA every year. Unfortunately, last year I slacked off and got it in late. Luckily my college is big enough to fill the gap in federal funding, but there is a trememdous difference between a timely file and a last minute file.

  4. ReverendDrGladhands says:


    The DOE sends FAFSA pin notifications to thousands of students/per email. More than a few email servers reject them as spam. to ensure that you receive your pin number via email, save in your contacts.

  5. JShore says:

    I’m a college student and consumerist reader! Thanks for the reminder, definitely something I will have to mark on the calender!

  6. What if you don’t know if you are going back this year?

  7. AaronM says:

    No worries, you have college student readers. I’m one of them.

  8. etinterrapax says:

    Bon Jour, if you don’t know whether you’re going back, it costs nothing and doesn’t obligate you if you file anyhow. Nothing gets paid out unless you enroll and show up for classes.

    One other thing to know is that if your parents, or you, if you’re emancipated, don’t file taxes early, you can estimate those amounts. Just make sure to check the box that says you will file, rather than the one that says you have filed. It has never, in my experience, held up my FAFSA processing or award.

    Also: if you are a graduate student in your first year, or planning to attend graduate school, you should know that the school doesn’t send those reminder letters to grad students. You’re expected to remember yourself to file your FAFSA, deal with the school’s process, and register for classes when your time comes around. So if you’ve been waiting for the letter, don’t. Get your application going yourself, right now.

  9. Cool – thanks!