If you are a student in the United States, then a quality education rarely comes without a price. As you apply to colleges, you’re probably still too eager to consider some of the financial implications — instead, you’re just excited to move into this new stage of your life.

However, once you’ve been accepted, you’re also hit with a new reality. Now, you officially need to figure out how you’re going to pay for a higher education, if you haven’t already. You can’t put it on the back burner any longer.

How someone pays for college is rarely a straightforward planning process. Rather, there’s a wide variety of ways you can fund your college education. Plus, the unique financial circumstances you’re in will obviously make an impact. While a college education is typically pricey, some schools are considerably more expensive than others. Long story short, there are a lot of factors you’ll need to account for.

The Top Ways to Pay for College

The financial side of college planning isn’t fun, but it’s an inevitability you’ll need to face. Unsure what your options are when it comes to funding your education? Here’s a list of some of those possibilities.

  • Grants and Scholarships
  • College Savings (High-Yield Savings Accounts)
  • Student Loans
  • Work-Study Programs
  • Military Family Aid
  • Foster Care Youth Aid
  • Education Tax Benefits

Much of the time, college students will use a combination of several of these funding methods. Although it’s unfortunate, paying for college isn’t usually a straightforward process. After all, you aren’t just pulling tuition money out of your pocket, and then handing it over to the university. It’s far more complicated than that, in the vast majority of cases.

Although, on average, around 92% of a student’s college education costs will be paid for through some form of financial aid.

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Paying for College as a Low-Income Student

Paying for college is difficult for almost every student. However, if you come from a low-income background, it’ll often be even more of a struggle — so much of a struggle that many low-income students decide against going to college, altogether.

Still, try not to let these barriers to educational success stop you, if you come from a low-income background.

In terms of college tuition costs, resources exist to help students without the financial means to attend college. For instance, low-income students still have access to federal aid, scholarships, and federal student loans. Need-based scholarships, in particular, can be especially useful to low-income students. Assuming that the student in question meets certain academic criteria, they may qualify for a need-based scholarship.

CBRG Helps Students with College Planning

College planning, including financial planning, is not a simple endeavor. In fact, it can quickly grow overwhelming, for a number of incoming college students. If you’re currently struggling with the college planning process, don’t try to manage it all on your own. Instead, get in touch with a college planner. The experts at the College Benefits Research Group can help incoming freshman work through the college planning process, step by step.

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