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MEFA Blog

MEFA Blog

Keep up to date with the latest news about planning and financing a college education and preparing for your financial future, from experts here at MEFA and across the industry. Browse through our blog and use it as your very own college planning guide.

What is the Effect of Retirement Savings on Financial Aid?
Retirement savings are not reported on the FAFSA, but they are reported on the CSS Profile, meaning they could potentially affect your financial aid award at certain schools. …
By Lauren Patten    |
Topics include completing financial aid applications, getting an FSA ID, who requires the CSS Profile, applying for financial aid without a Social Security number, who should complete the financial aid applications, the affect of 529 accounts on financial aid, the financial aid timeline, EFC Calculators, and helpful websites. …
By Meredith Barnhart    |
Items needed include an FSA ID, a College Board username and password, a student's driver's license, a list of colleges where the student is applying, Social Security numbers, 2018 W-2 form(s), 2018 untaxed income records, current bank statements, current business and investment records, current real estate records, and 2018 federal income tax returns. …
By Meredith Barnhart    |
Applying for Financial Aid with International Parents
If parents are U.S. citizens living abroad, they can still create an FSA ID, but will need to convert income and assets into U.S. dollars. If parents are not U.S. citizens, they will not be able to create an FSA ID and will need to print out the signature page and mail it to the address indicated. …
By Jonathan Hughes    |
Learn how to file the FAFSA (where only the custodial parent will provide information), how to file the CSS Profile (where both custodial and noncustodial parents usually provide information), and what to do if the noncustodial parent is not available. …
By Julie Shields-Rutyna    |
Topics include financial aid applications, application deadlines, where to find information, merit-based aid, financial aid types, verification, and what happens after students apply…
By Ajea Stupart    |
Reporting Income on Financial Aid Applications
We speak with a Director of Student Financial Services to learn what income gets reported, what happens if income changes due to a job loss, how to report income if you're self-employed, and what happens if you withdraw funds from a retirement account. …
By Julie Shields-Rutyna    |
Learn what assets you don't have to report on the FAFSA (primary home, retirement savings, life insurance, a small family business) as well as what assets you do have to report (savings and checking accounts, investments, other property owned), as well as details on what to report on the CSS Profile. …
By Jonathan Hughes    |
Research each school's financial aid requirements and deadlines, submit the FAFSA and other required applications, such as the CSS Profile or institutional form, and complete Verification if selected…
By Meredith Barnhart    |
By Julie Shields-Rutyna    |
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