I am not a college planner. However, planning for paying for college is a big part of what we do for our clients. Strategizing on the right college and knowing how income and assets are applied in the Federal formulas is something we help with. Guiding clients on limiting debt and not sacrificing funding their other goals is a primary objective.
In the process of reviewing college stats, costs, and scholarships, some of the resources that I have found most helpful are listed below:
College Board and College Data sites – These sites can give volumes of data about your college of choice including admission stats, graduation rates, and financial aid given.
The College Solution - http://www.thecollegesolution.com/
This site is run by Lynn O’Shaughnessy. She has many resources on the search process, getting accepted, and paying for college. It is the do it yourself version of what a college planner might do for you.
DIY College Rankings – http://diycollegerankings.com/
This site is run by Michelle Kretzschmal. She has many free resources as well as paid resources. Many of the resources on her site are in a list or database format. I particularly like the Comprehensive College Search spreadsheet that gives amazing levels of detail on nearly every college. All in one spreadsheet. If you like data, this is worth the modest cost.
Scholarship information – Wendy Nelson has compiled a comprehensive database list of full scholarships as well as merit scholarships available at colleges with the criteria required to receive them.
https://meritscholarshiplist.com/ Listing of schools Merit Scholarships. As there are so many merit options at school, I have found this may not have all details on each school.
http://www.mykidscollegechoice.com/ Listing of full ride scholarships
Not a data person? Working with a college planner may be a great solution. They can assist with many different things such as Test Prep, Essay writing, completing your FAFSA, determining your EFC, and targeting the right school both socially and financially. It may be well worth your money to use a professional. Feel free to contact me if you need some recommendations.
Individuals listed, and their respective companies/sites are not affiliated with LPL Financial and Aspire Planning Group.