The best option for students or parents with bad credit is to search for scholarships and grants. These are sources of college funding that you do not have to pay back and will save you the most money.
There are tons of resources out there for non-repayable funds. Try a site like Fastweb.com. Spend some time researching what scholarships and grants you are eligible for and what you have to do to apply for them. Some might be based on academics, others on financial need.
Once you find the programs that you are eligible for, apply for them all. There is no amount too small. If you need $5,000 don't just apply for a scholarship worth that exact amount. Ten programs worth $500 each will get you to your goal just the same. In the end it is the dollar amount that matters, not the number of applications you fill out.
Your credit score does not affect your ability to obtain these types of assistance. So if you have bad credit use these as a way around that. In the long run, it saves you money and helps to stabilize your finances so you can start building good credit in the future.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|