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Parents Cannot Meet EFC

oscar63oscar63 368 replies4 threads Member
When parents cannot meet the EFC a college assigns, ( they have not saved for college at all) is the student able to negotiate this with college or does it just end up being a bigger loan the student needs to take out? Thank you!
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Replies to: Parents Cannot Meet EFC

  • intparentintparent 36291 replies644 threads Senior Member
    You can only borrow $5,500 yourself (federal loan limit for frosh), and slightly higher amounts each of the next 3 years. Colleges don’t care if parents didn’t save or don’t want to part with current income.

    Most students in that situations up doing one or a combo of these:

    - Living at home and attending a community college or a 4 year college that is close enough to commute to.
    - Taking semesters off sometimes to work and earn money to pay for the next semester.
    - If the student has good stats, looking for schools where they can get good merit based scholarship money.
    - Taking out some private loans with parents co-signing. This is not recommended - private loans have a lot fewer protections for the borrower, and you (or your parents) can end up hamstrung financially by them.
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  • thumper1thumper1 78278 replies3527 threads Senior Member
    How much is your EFC that your parents can’t pay?
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  • oscar63oscar63 368 replies4 threads Member
    12,000 is the EFC
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  • spqr70njspqr70nj 421 replies2 threads Member
    I wish our EFC was $12,000.
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  • thumper1thumper1 78278 replies3527 threads Senior Member
    Does that EFC include college aid that already 8nclides the Direct Loan?
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  • oscar63oscar63 368 replies4 threads Member
    @intparent What do you mean fewer protections in private loans? Then what type of loan is best to take?
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  • intparentintparent 36291 replies644 threads Senior Member
    The best types of loans, assuming you or your kids are not internationals, are federal student loans. Direct subsidized and direct unsubsidized loans. There are direct PLUS loans for parents, too, but again... sticking with the federal direct loans for students is the most prudent path. Here is a website that shows a comparison of the different types of loans and some of the features of them:

    https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/types/loans/federal-vs-private

    Most of the horror stories you hear about high amounts and/or situations where students are really in trouble with loans are when private loans were taken out.
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  • thumper1thumper1 78278 replies3527 threads Senior Member
    @oscar63

    Does this unaffordable EFC already include financial aid that includes the federally funded Direct Loan? Please answer that question.
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  • oscar63oscar63 368 replies4 threads Member
    @thumper1, not including financial aid
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  • oscar63oscar63 368 replies4 threads Member
    @intparent,Thank you very helpful. Do parents need to cosign federal student loans?
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  • intparentintparent 36291 replies644 threads Senior Member
    No, they do not. Those loans are entirely the student's responsibility to take out and pay back. (Not that parents don't work with the student on making sure the paperwork gets done, etc in some cases). But the federal student loans are limited to $5,500 freshman year, $6,500 soph year, and $7,500 each year for jr and sr years.
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  • thumper1thumper1 78278 replies3527 threads Senior Member
    Ok...so for freshman year, you are short $12,000. How much of that CAN your parents pay? Your freshman Direct Loan is $5500...so you have $6500 left to fund. Can your parents pay that amounts any portion of it?

    Could they pay $700 a month or so...some schools have a monthly payment plan.
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  • sybbie719sybbie719 20966 replies2052 threads Super Moderator
    @thumper wrote:

    Ok...so for freshman year, you are short $12,000. How much of that CAN your parents pay? Your freshman Direct Loan is $5500...so you have $6500 left to fund. Can your parents pay that amounts any portion of it?

    This is only the case if the $5500 is not already included in the student's financial aid package. This would happen at a school that meets 100% demonstrated need and also has a no loan policy when it comes to distributing aid.
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  • SybyllaSybylla 4901 replies59 threads Senior Member
    OP is the parent, maybe he can outline the award?
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  • oscar63oscar63 368 replies4 threads Member
    Thank you all for your help!!
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  • austinmshauriaustinmshauri 9855 replies377 threads Senior Member
    The EFC isn't the total colleges will expect you to pay. It's the minimum. If your child is a US citizen s/he can take the federal student loan ($5500 as a freshman, $6500 as a sophomore, and $7500/year as a junior and senior). I think a $12k EFC is too high to qualify for federal or state grants, but if your child has high stats they may qualify for merit aid.

    International students who can't afford what colleges expect them to pay need to pursue financing in their own country. International.students may qualify for merit too, but if parents can't pay anything the chances of filling the gap are slim.
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  • happymomof1happymomof1 30745 replies197 threads Senior Member
    Our EFC was unaffordable, and we had no college savings. What we could afford was the local community college. We told our kid that her options were the community college or any place she could get an aid package that brought our costs down to the price of the community college. She wasn't interested in digging for affordable 4-year places and opted for the CC and a guaranteed transfer to a state U.

    Crunch your numbers. Can you set aside anything at all each month? Try doing that. Whatever you can peel off and stash in some kind of savings (even if it is in a shoebox under your bed) will be money you can have available for college costs. Start on January 1, and you might be able to have a semester of community college costs saved before a bill comes for the fall. That's how we worked things.
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  • thumper1thumper1 78278 replies3527 threads Senior Member
    @oscar63

    So...your FAFSA EFC is $12,000? Is that right?

    Have you received a financial aid package from any college...yet? If not, you need to wait and see what the college financial aid is...because your FAFSA EFC is the minimum you will be expected to pay.

    OR is the $12,000 number the net cost a net price calculator is giving you? If that is the case, what aid does that NPC say you will possibly get.

    Regardless...until you have a financial aid award in hand...you don’t have a clear number of your costs.

    What CAN your parents afford to pay annually?

    I am a mom of three- 2 college (BU, Dartmouth) and 1 grad school

    Also...if you have three older kids...this is not your first rodeo. How are you paying for the BU and Dartmouth kids...and how did you pay for the kid who is now in grad school?

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  • oscar63oscar63 368 replies4 threads Member
    @ thumper1 will pm you
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  • austinmshauriaustinmshauri 9855 replies377 threads Senior Member
    If the gap after the tuition grant is $16k then the college might be unaffordable. The student can only borrow $5500. Even if they work summers they can only raise ~$3k. They'd still be $7500 short. Can they attend cc for 2 years then transfer to a 4-year school? Are their stats high enough to get merit anywhere?
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