Frequently Asked Questions About the Parent PLUS Credit Check

Parent PLUS FAQs 2015 Edition In an ongoing series, the CollegeUp.org Blog is answering some very frequently asked questions about Parent PLUS loans issued by the Federal Direct Loan Program. Our second installment in the 2015 Edition of our Parent PLUS Loan FAQs covers Questions 12 through 19, which focus on the credit criteria used to determine eligibility for Parent PLUS loans. Today's post also explains the options available to parents who fail the initial credit check. Parent PLUS Credit Check Criteria A borrower must not have an “adverse” credit...Read More
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Parent PLUS Loan FAQs - 2015 Edition

Here's the first salvo in our 2015 series of FAQs on Parent PLUS loans — a popular topic for readers of the CollegeUp.org Blog. Today, we're answering 11 questions that cover the basics. Over the next couple of weeks, we'll answer at least two dozen more, frequently asked questions about Direct Parent PLUS loans. Yes, we get asked a lot of questions about Parent PLUS loans. Who is eligible to get a Direct Parent PLUS Loan? A parent of a dependent undergraduate student. For federal financial aid purposes, a student is usually considered...Read More
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Here Are the Federal Student Loan Interest Rate and Fee Schedules for 2015-16

Lower interest rates have taken effect for new Direct Stafford, Graduate PLUS and Parent PLUS loans As of July 1, 2015, the rates on student and parent loans issued under the Federal Direct Loan Program during the 2015-16 award year fell nearly two fifths of a percentage point from the rates charged on loans issued during the 2014-15 financial aid award year. Federal Student Loan Interest Rates 2015-16As shown in the accompanying table, the interest rates on Direct Loans issued from July 1, 2015, through June 30, 2016, will range from...Read More
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Summer = Scholarship Search Time

Summer = Scholarship Search TimeAn aspiring college student is, most likely, a scholarship seeking student, and, for members of the high school class of 2016, summer free time is scholarship search time.   Of course, members of the Class of 2016 have it easier than their parents, who probably had to spend hours at the public library to research scholarship leads. Today, scholarship search engines allow students to quickly identify potential scholarships that are available, for example, to students who:
  • Plan to pursue a...
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Hackers Force IRS to Suspend “Get Transcript” Download Service, but You Can Still Go Online to Request Your Federal Tax Return Transcript by Mail

First the bad news:  In late May, the Internal Revenue Service announced that it was temporarily shutting down its automated “Get Transcript” service, which allows taxpayers to go to the IRS website to immediately obtain an electronic copy of their federal Tax Return Transcript.  The IRS suspended this convenient service after it detected that “criminals used taxpayer-specific data acquired from non-IRS sources to gain unauthorized access to information on approximately 100,000 tax accounts.”...Read More
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If You Need Another College Option for 2015-16, Check Out NACAC's College Openings Survey

Are you still searching for a college to attend this fall? Perhaps you’re on a waiting list and need a fallback, just in case. Or perhaps, you’ve been accepted to a school but didn’t get enough financial aid to swing the deal.  Even though it’s late May, it’s not too late to apply to a college, get accepted, find a dorm room, and receive financial aid. As of May 22, 2015, more than 300 colleges located throughout the United States and in a half-dozen other countries still had openings for...Read More
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Rates Will be Lower for Federal Student Loans Issued in 2015-16 Financial Aid Award Year

The interest rates on student and parent loans issued under the Federal Direct Loan Program during the 2015-16 award year are slated to fall nearly two fifths of a percentage point from the rates for Direct Subsidized, Unsubsidized, Graduate PLUS and Parent PLUS loans issued during the current, 2014-15 financial aid award year. As shown in the accompanying table, the interest rates on Direct Loans issued from July 1, 2015, through June 30, 2016, will range from 4.29 percent for Subsidized and...Read More
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Follow These Easy Instructions to Create Your New Federal Student Aid User ID and Password

FSA IDOn May 10, the U.S. Department of Education will implement its new login process for the federal student programs. The federal government is replacing its old-fashioned FSA PIN with a new method — called the FSA ID — which relies on a username and password.  Effective May 10, the FSA ID will be used to confirm your identity when you go online to submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid at www.FAFSA.gov or sign other federal student aid documents, or check on your federal student...Read More
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No Scholarship Yet? Keep Hunting

So you’re definitely college bound. You submitted the FAFSA, received a financial aid package, and made your college choice. But, so far, you haven’t landed a private scholarship, and you (and your parents) could use some additional cash to make college truly affordable. You can appeal your financial aid award, but there’s no guarantee that your school will be able to offer any additional assistance. You also can resist the temptation to succumb to senioritis and, instead, devote your free time...Read More
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1.7 Million High School Seniors Have Submitted Their 2015-16 FAFSAs

2015-16 High School FAFSA submissionsBy  April 17, 2015, nearly 1.7 million high school seniors had submitted their FAFSAs to apply for federal financial aid for the 2015-16 academic year. That's an increase of 2.2 percent over the number of college-aspiring high schoolers who submitted FAFSAs by mid-April of 2014. Submitting the Free Application for Federal Student Aid is a must for members of the Class of 2015 who want to be considered for federal financial aid programs.  According to data compiled by the U.S. Department of...Read More
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