My FAFSA came up incredibly high. Will colleges understand?

<p>I got my FAFSA back and my EFC came out to be around $48,000 a year. Now, I think this is a bit ridiculous considering my dad makes $150,000/yr before taxes, and i have two siblings, one of whom is about to enter college. My parents say their absolute stretch for money is about $25,000/yr.</p>

<p>I am a transfer student so if I have to loan it would fortunately only cost me for three years. I can make $4-5k a year working, as well. So, a financial aid situation where the total costs around $30-35,000 would be manageable for me, but the $48,000 figure is outrageous and completely unattainable. </p>

<p>I have been accepted to Wash U. and hope with all my heart that I can go, but its total costs are almost exactly what my EFC is. </p>

<p>Do you think the university will give me a better deal than what is indicated on my FAFSA? I am probably going with one of my parents to talk to someone in their financial aid office in person to see.</p>

<p>"Do you think the university will give me a better deal than what is indicated on my FAFSA?"</p>

<p>No. An EFC a third of one's gross pay is common. The EFC isn't the amount a family is comfortable spending on college, but rather the amount a family is expected to have saved and borrow to pay for college. If you and your parents have not saved the cost of your college education, you and your parents will be expected to borrow money to pay for your college education. Also, you referred to your dad's income but not your mom's income. Some mothers who have stayed home to rear their children get jobs to help pay for their kid's college costs.</p>

<p>Will your brother be in college at the same time? If so, did you indicate on your FAFSA that there will be TWO students in college? If he isn't going to be in college while you are, it won't matter. Also, you mention income but you do not mention any assets (like home equity, other property your family owns, savings, college savings accounts). Wash U also uses the CSS Profile and all of the above will be considered in your financial aid calculations.</p>

<p>Sometimes, for some families, the CSS Profile's way of figuring need can lead to a better financial aid situation than the FAFSA. I guess it depends on the situation.</p>

<p>if you're brother is going to college, then you might want to contact the college. sometimes they will help you out.</p>

<p>I assume the EFC is for one year, correct? It doesn't say one year or four years in any of the FAFSA literature. Obviously, a 1/3 of one's income over four years seems a bit more manageable than a 1/3 of one's income for one year. My guess though is that someone is going to tell me is it's one year. Thanks.</p>

<p>The FAFSA indicates your expected family contribution for the next (one) school year. Those who completed the 2008-2009 FAFSA got this number for THAT school year. Each year, this document is refiled for federal need based aid.</p>

<p>So...yes Ann Arbor's for one year.</p>