When it comes to Financial Aid it always pays to start early. In most cases, the earlier the better. Starting on January 1, 2011 you will be able to submit the FAFSA for the 2011-2012 Academic year. This information will be used to award you financial aid from August 2011 – July 2012.
It is always a really good idea to plan ahead and to file your FAFSA early so that your prospective college has ample time to prepare your financial aid file. Most colleges have unique deadlines for completing the FAFSA, but if you submit your FAFSA in January you will beat any deadline.
If you or your parents do not file your taxes until the deadline on April 15, then you may want to consider submitting the FASFA without your tax information. This is a great option, but you will need to remember to go back in and update your tax information once it is submitted.
If you are able to submit your FAFSA by the end of January you will already have a huge piece of your college admissions process out of the way. This will free you up to focus on many other important items that will need your full consideration. Financial aid can be confusing, but you can guarantee your success by completing your application early!