19 Sep Everything You Need to Complete Your 2024-2025 FAFSA
The FAFSA is coming. For the 2024-2025 application cycle, the FAFSA will be released in December. If you’re attending college in the fall of 2024, then you’ll likely need to complete the FAFSA this winter. Be sure to review your college’s website to make sure you don’t have any other components to file. Sometimes schools require the FAFSA as well as the CSS Profile or additional forms. If you’re a current student, make sure to file the FAFSA again this year. It’s not something you only do once! We’re reviewing everything you need to know to complete your 2024-2025 FAFSA correctly – and on time!
What is the FAFSA again?
As a reminder, the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is how schools determine your eligibility aid. This includes federal and student aid, and institutional support. Even some scholarships require you to file the FAFSA. If you think you will qualify for the Federal Work-Study Program, or will need to borrow money through Federal Student Loans, the FAFSA is a must do application. It’s important to apply as soon as the application opens, as many programs have limited funding. The FAFSA usually opens in the fall. Because of massive overhauls made recently, the 2024-2025 application will open in December. This limited time table will impact how quickly aid packages are delivered. So, work hard to complete yours as quickly as possible.
Here’s everything you need to complete your 2024-2025 FAFSA:
- FSA ID: Each student and one parent of each dependent student will need an FSA ID, or username and password to log in to certain U.S. Department of Education (ED) websites and complete the FAFSA. You do not have to wait until December to obtain this information – apply for your FSA ID now.
- Social Security Number: If you do not yet have a Social Security number, get one now from the Social Security Administration. If you are not a U.S. citizen, you will need an Alien Registration number.
- Driver’s License: This may be needed for identification purposes, but don’t worry if you don’t have one yet.
- Tax Returns: You will need to use tax information from your 2022 federal income tax return, even though your financial situation may have changed in 2023. Starting with the new 2024-2025 application, information will be gathered from the IRS through the Federal Tax Information tool.
- Untaxed Income: You may be asked to provide details on untaxed income such as child support received, interest income, and veterans non-education benefits.
- Assets: You will be asked to provide information on available assets such as savings and checking account balances, as well as the value of investments such as stocks and bonds and real estate (but not the home in which your family lives). You will report the current amounts as of the date you sign the FAFSA form.
- Prospective Colleges: Make a list of colleges you may apply to, so your FAFSA information can be forwarded to them, even if you have not yet applied or been accepted. You can list up to 20 schools at a time on your FAFSA form. If you aren’t sure about all the schools you want to send it to, you can add schools in later.
As soon as you are ready to apply in December, complete the FAFSA form online using the fafsa.gov website. A quick tip: if using the online version, enable your browser to allow pop-ups. There are several prompts and helpful information that appear along the way. Always make sure the name you use on your FAFSA exactly matches the one on file with Social Security, check your form for any errors before submitting, and be sure to sign your FAFSA. Once all that’s done, you’ll be ready to hit “submit” and the first step of your college financial journey has begun!
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CFAA helps with the financial aid process, from completing the FAFSA and completing the CSS Profile to reviewing the SAR, responding to requests for verification, comparing financial aid offers and understanding student loan options. Schedule a 15 Minute Power Chat to learn more about finding ways to pay for college.