Perhaps the most complex and daunting aspect of the college application process is making sure that all the forms are completed in a timely and correct manner. One important form is the FAFSA which is an acronym for Free Application for Federal Student Aid. This form is the platform that the government uses to determine if a student is eligible for financial aid. In order to fill out the application, the filer and the student have to apply for a FSA ID. This takes no more than five minutes to do, but be sure to store your ID number in a safe place as you will need to use it when filing. The next thing that is important to have is your tax statement from the previous year, any additional information about your finances and of course a chunk of time to complete the process- it should take no longer than an hour should all the documentation be available.
If you are nervous about the process, and are unsure of what you will need to have on hand, a very handy website is the FAFSA Demo website which can be found at. https://fafsademo.test.ed.gov/ This website takes you through the filling out of the FAFSA step by step. It makes the process user friendly and removes the mystery and anxiety and replaces it with confidence and familiarity. If there are questions, you simply need to click on the task and most answers can be found. No information is stored on the Demo, and you have to complete it in one sitting, but it is an authentic replication of the experience you will have when filling out the FAFSA for real. Nothing can feel better than knowing what to expect and then tackling it head on.
Beware of third party businesses who advertise on the internet and who will try and sell you their services of filling the FAFSA for you for a fee. The FAFSA requires you to reveal personal data that should never fall into the wrong person’s hands. With organization and the correct information available, the process can be easy.