College Isn't Cheap - Fill Out Your FAFSA!

As Sophomores and Juniors, you may hear your Senior friends talking about “FAFSA” a lot.  You may figure, “no need to worry, I’ve got years  before that.”

Then, you wake up. Your parents are freaking out about your college applications, and senioritis is seriously kicking in.

According to https://fafsa.ed.gov/help.htm, “Completing and submitting a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is the single most important thing you can do to get assistance paying for college.”

You might ask yourself what in the world does this have to do with me?

However, if you are in high school, or are considering going to college or returning to college, this has everything to do with you!

Many students do not know how easy it can be to get money to help with college.

The FAFSA website mentioned above also goes over many fears or myths that students might think would stand in their way when it comes to receiving money for college. These may include thinking that you or your parents make too much money so you won’t qualify for aid, that you have to have good grades to receive aid, that you’re too old for financial aid, or even that the form is too difficult or complicated to fill out.

NONE of these are true!

We already went over why you need it, so let’s go over more specifically what it is.

It is merely a FREE application for federal student aid that can come in different forms including: federal grants, loans, and work-study.

See how easy it is to be walked through the application process and have all your questions answered. Visit the above mentioned website – https://fafsa.ed.gov/help.htm.

Also, be sure to check out this awesome website https://getschooled.com/fafsa-resources.

This website, Get Schooled, has tons of helpful tips and links from not only the experts, but also students like you.

Their topics include:

  • Finding out which parent to use for the FAFSA
  • Getting an estimate on your aid package
  • All of the different types of aid that you might qualify for
  • FAFSA tips from your peers
  • FAFSA on TwitterFacebook, and YouTube

Go check it out! It’s not scary at all.

What's Your Budget Black Hole?

For teenagers or just anyone in general, it’s always extremely difficult to save money.

Sure, it’s easy to talk about it or learn about it in class and think it’s a good idea.

But actually doing it? That’s a completely different story.

We are very impulsive creatures and there are all sorts of reasons why we spend money without thinking about it, or without caring at the moment about the consequences of it.

It’s so easy to spend money to “fix” a bad day, or a bad mood, or just to distract yourself from reality for awhile.

When you realize you’ve run out of money, you may regret your decision. The knot in your stomach begins to tighten.

I’m sure you’ve all heard of black holes.

But did you know that black holes and budgets go hand in hand?

According to the blog Budgets are $exy, “According to NASA, some of the hallmark characteristics of black holes are invisibility and varying size. They literally can’t be seen, and can be sized anywhere from a puddle to a sea.”

If you’re having difficulty sticking to a budget, or saving your money, you may be unaware of your budgeting black holes!

So that’s where it all goes!

No, there’s not really a black hole in your wallet, pulling your money into another universe! You are the one sucking it out, and most of the time without even realizing it. That’s why it’s important to learn how to keep track of your spending.

Budget black holes can be caused by anything! They can be anything from you’re daily latte purchase, to impulsive book buying, to eating out, and taking trips to the movie theater.

They may be areas in which you think you may not spend a lot of money and, therefore, don’t worry about, but they become black holes when they go uncalculated. They add up, and BOOM! Suddenly you’re hit with a reality check. You’re broke!

Once again, the above mentioned blog, http://www.budgetsaresexy.com/2014/01/black-hole-in-your-budget/, says “the key is being able to spot these black holes, and knowing the size of them.”

Therefore, find out what they are and keep track of them to save yourself from the horrors of being broke!

What are your budget black holes?

Find out what they are! PAY ATTENTION to ALL of your purchases, especially the “little” ones! If you find that you’re always broke a few days after pay day, then maybe occasionally skip the coffee or trip to the movies. Don’t give them up, just learn when to put spending off for another few days, making it even better when you do buy something (and you’ll be guilt free)!

Knowing Your Stuff - Money Edition

By Hannah Moore

How financially literate do you think you are in comparison to the rest of the general American public? Take this simple yet revealing quiz to find out. Don’t feel bad if you fall short. Statistically, most people do. Even folks with a post secondary education do. The numbers show that 55.7% of Americans with college degrees answered at least one of the three questions incorrectly. The point of this quiz isn’t directly about being right or wrong though – it’s about how the results reflect what’s not known on average, even when it arguably should be. And if that is telling of anything, it’s that financial literacy has to be sought after, because it’s not usually readily available to the masses. At Andson we aim to make this knowledge readily available for students and their families, because knowing how to handle your money is essential for every age and life situation. We teach these concepts through classroom worksheets, homework assignments, and take home reviews to explain to parents what is being taught and how they can assist in the learning process. Andson curriculum strives for not only a 3 out of 3 score on this quiz, but a more prepared generation of Southern Nevada.