Financial aid is one of the most important aspects of college applications. In order to receive maximum financial aid for which you qualify, parents and students should be as prudent and careful and make it a point to avoid certain mistakes while applying for financial aid.Here are some of the most common mistakes students and parents make while applying for financial aid that you should avoid making at all costs.

• Not sticking to deadlines: Financial aid is always handed out to applicants on a first come, first served basis. However, some applicants put off filling out a FAFSA form to a later date and sometimes end up missing the deadline altogether! You should try to fill out and submit the FAFSA as close to 1st January as possible. This will increase your chances of receiving maximum financial aid for which you qualify.

• Not answering all questions completely: This is one of the most common mistakes made by applicants and should be avoided as it can work against you while trying to secure financial aid. People choose to leave a question unanswered if the answer is zero. But you should know that if the answer to a question is zero, then you must, by all means, fill in a zero. Just make sure you leave no blank spaces in your application form.

• Failing to update family’s financial information: Some people begin filling out the FAFSA before doing their taxes and fill in estimatedfinancial information. While that is fine, it is important to go back and update your application once your taxes are done.

• Avoid writing the wrong social security number: Although this might seem like a no-brainer, applicants sometimes mistype the student’s social security number, driver’s license number and legal name while filling out the FAFSA.

• Don’t ignore federal loans: A common mistake most applicants make is that if they fail to get a student loan, they apply for private loans. You should apply for a federal loan as they have a much lower rate of interest than private loans.

• Not applying for financial aid altogether: Most families who own homes and earn salaries anywhere ranging between $40,000- $100,000 are under the false impression that they will not be eligible for financial aid. But this is not true as almost every student is eligible to receive some form of financial aid. Be smart and take tips on how you should fill out the FAFSA form to get maximum financial aid.

Securing financial aid for colleges, both on-ground and online, has gotten much easier these days. In fact, most colleges offer some sort of financial aid of their own. Then there are other accredited online colleges, like Independence University, which according to reviews, offer financial aid assistance programs for those who qualify and free FAFSA help to all its students. Information about Independence University accreditation and programs can be found easily on the Internet so you can give a read before applying to the college. Try avoiding these common mistakes while applying for financial aid and increase your chances of receiving maximum financial aid for which you qualify.

Author's Bio: 

Bruce Locke is an avid reader and an Educational Consultant having rich experience of more than 10 years. His areas of expertise include Educational Planning, Career Planning & student counseling. In his spare time, he loves to participate in online literature forums and promote reading for youth.