Financial Aid for only one child?

For the last two years we’ve had one child in a private university with no financial aid as we were not eligible due to income and having a 529 account. Income for 2017 is significantly different from previous years, and with second child now heading off to college we will be pursuing aid for the older child. We aren’t going to pursue for the second child because when the second prepared applications months ago, we were not in this situation and answered “no” to that question in the fall. Kid 2 has not yet decided on a school yet, but merit is not in the cards.

Child 1’s school advised to complete a “change in circumstances form”, complete Fafsa and CSS before April 25. Is this unusual to pursue financial aid for one child and not the other? Are there ramifications with the older child’s school? Any other advice?

Thank you!

I don’t think there are any ramifications, but why not also find out if you can apply for aid for second child, too.

Thank you @mom2collegekids – because of the 529 account I’m embarrassed to say we didn’t think we’d be at all eligible as it should cover both kids for at least one year–so we let the deadlines slip past. It probably wouldn’t hurt to ask…the worst they could say is no…thx : )

We will be asking one of the schools that is need aware if they will consider merit as their website would imply that child 2 could have received an award.


Complete the forms for kid one. You might get some aid for THAT kid now that kid 2 is going to college.

It doesn’t matter what box you checked when your first kid applied. You didn’t apply for aid at that time…and unless the school has some restriction on applying now…go for it. You never know! It could save you some money!!

If you would like your kid 2 to get the Direct Loan…it’s NOT too late to submit the FAFSA for that.

Having enough money in your accounts for one year of college should not have discouraged you from applying for aid anyway…for both kids.

Thx @thumper1 --will check into that


529 accts aren’t looked at that way. Only a portion would be calculated to use for year one.

On the FAFSA 529s and many other assets count toward your EFC at just over 5% per year. Fill out the forms!

Thank you @mom2collegekids and @pauler80020 --I’ve gotten to work on the forms!

There is a parent asset protection amount on the FAFSA too. It goes by age of older parent.

It might be around $20,000 and then parent assets above that are counted 5% towards FAFSA EFC.

Since your 2017 income is lower, make sure to do the 2019/20 FAFSA in October of 2019 too.

Who knows, maybe with 2 in college you might qualify for a state grant or at the least the daughters can take out their student loans to help pay for college.