Now is the time to think about some money moves you can make that can increase the amount of college financial aid your student receives.I’m not saying you can magically get loads of free money for college by using a few financial gimmicks, but you can increase the amount of federal student loans and work study aid your student qualifies for by making a few strategic financial moves.
First, if you have significant savings, schools will expect you to use a portion of that money for college expenses. The more money the government believes you can contribute to your child’s college education, the less money it’s willing to lend you. So, before you apply for financial aid, consider using some of your savings to pay down debt, make additional mortgage payments, contribute to your 401(k) or an IRA or buy big-ticket items such as a car or computer. This helps because when figuring out aid eligibility, the federal financial aid methodology does not take consumer debt, retirement accounts, the mortgage on your primary home or recent purchases into account.