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tuition

How to Save Big on College Tuition

by Advance Financial | July 19th, 2016

college-tuition

College isn’t cheap. There are a lot of costs associated with furthering your education and for most it’s a heavy burden to carry. If you are looking for ways to save on your college tuition, then look no further. Here is a list of the best ways to cut down the cost of your schooling.

Choose your college wisely

When it comes to deciding what college to enroll in, the price of that school should be a major factor to consider. College tuition can vary in price and we are talking a difference of $7,000 a semester to $27,000 a semester. A good rule of thumb is to avoid the private schools and choose a public school. Private schools will always have higher tuition compared to public schools. As well as choosing a public school, go to an in-state school. Tuition fees for out-of-state students can more than double in cost.

Live off campus

Some schools require you to live on campus the first year, forcing you to pay more for a tiny dorm room instead of sharing a 2-bedroom apartment with a roommate. If there is no way around it then do your time and get out of there. There are loopholes however. Already having an established residency within driving distance from campus will get you out of living on campus the first year at a lot of colleges.

Continually apply for scholarships

Scholarships aren’t just for high school students. There are tons of scholarship programs out there for current students, older individuals starting school, part time students, and parents going back to school. You name it and there is a scholarship for it. All you have to do is research to find them. Every semester you should apply and reapply for scholarships. You’d be surprised at how much of your tuition can be cut out from being awarded numerous small dollar scholarships, so make sure and apply for any amount, not just the sizable ones.

Rent your books instead of buying them

It just might be one of the biggest rip-offs associated with the college expenses, but you have to have books for your classes. Instead of spending over $1,000 on books per semester, rent your books for a fraction of the cost. Companies like Chegg and ValorBooks offer a rental service where they ship the textbooks as well as provide shipping labels for you to ship them back once the semester is over.

Track your educational expenses and deduct them from your income

Yep, college expenses are tax deductible. Take advantage of this by tracking everything you spend on college: tuition, books, a computer, and even pencils. It all adds up and you can get a heftier refund come tax season. You can also get a refund for the interest paid on federal student loans, so make sure to add that to your deductions as well.

Go to a college with fixed-price tuition

There are multiple colleges and universities that offer fixed-price tuition. When attending a fixed-price school, they guarantee that price for tuition will be exactly the same from your freshman year until your senior year. And since many schools hike up the price of tuition every year, this can be a big money saver throughout college.

See if you qualify for tuition waivers

 A tuition waiver substantially reduces the price of tuition for those that fall in a specific category, like a veterans or teachers. Certain schools have different waivers but almost all schools have some type of waiver. The most common types of waivers offered by schools are for veterans, Peace Corps workers, teachers, or the dependents of higher education employees, as well as students whose parents work in civil services (i.e. firefighters, police or academics).

Take summer classes

Since most students are living it up and getting as far away from school as possible during the summer, enrollment is very low and this transfers over to the price of classes during this time. Look to see if classes you need are offered during the summer and try to enroll for them then to cut down the cost of classes.

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