Going to college is becoming more and more expensive every, single year. While many students can rely on their parents to help out with education costs, many students don’t want to stretch that help farther than necessary. Fortunately there are a lot of ways for students to save their parents money when it comes time to cover their college costs.
#1: Choose your school carefully
Just because a school comes with a higher price tag, that doesn’t necessarily mean that it offers a better education. This is particularly true when it comes to private versus state schools. If two schools offer a similar education, and have similar reputations, but one school comes with a price tag that’s the equivalent of a new car every semester, then it’s often a good idea to go with the less expensive education.
#2: Fill out grants and scholarships early
There are all kinds of opportunities to get free money for school, provided that students know where to look. Fill out the federal government aid application, the FAFSA, is something that every college student should do. However, there are hundreds, if not thousands, of scholarship and grant opportunities available. Students should see if their parents’ employers or social groups offer scholarships. Often students will qualify for aid based on their academic prowess, financial need, athletic ability, ethnicity, or a dozen other factors. There is a lot of competition for these grants and scholarships though, so students need to fill out the paperwork early to make sure they get a head start.
#3: Look into online classes
Online classes have grown in popularity, and they’ve been embraced by colleges looking to extend their enrollment lists and take in more students than ever before. These classes tend to be less expensive up front, and they are more convenient for students who don’t want to be shackled to a classroom and a meeting time a certain number of days out of the week. Additionally, if these classes are hosted as part of an accredited university then the classes will be recognized for the purposes of getting a degree from that school. Why drive to class at nine in the morning for your general education requirements if you can have class in your pajamas at home for less money?
#4: Use Technology and Renting to Lower Your Costs
Online classes have grown in popularity with technology, but additional changes have come to schools to help save students, and their parents, money. Registration can now be done online, and often fees can be waived when students do the grunt work themselves. Students can also save money by purchasing eBook versions of their texts, rather than buying the full, physical copies of the books for their classes. Additionally, students can rent textbooks to save on their costs. While not part of tuition, students need to have textbooks in order to get the education they’re in class for in the first place. College isn’t cheap, and it’s important that students and their parents look for every advantage they can get when it comes time to start paying those educational bills.