You can apply for a Stafford loan without needing your parents to be co-signors. However, depending on how much financial aid you are receiving and what your COA (Cost of Attendance) is at your school, it may not be enough given the loan limits (www.finaid.org/loans).
If you cannot answer "Yes" to any of the following questions:
were you born before January 1, 1984
are you a graduate or professional student
do you have children you support
do you have legal dependents
are you an orphan or ward of the court
are you active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces
are you a veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces
then you will be considered a Dependent student and require your parent(s) information to determine your financial aid each year. You can talk to your financial aid office about appealing your status and making you Independent, but, unfortunately, unless there is an extreme reason why you can't provide your parental information (incarceration, institutionalized, etc.) your appeal will most likely be denied.
You should talk to a financial aid officer at your school for more information/guidance. Good luck!
You can apply for loans by yourself.
Speaking from personal experience, you likely will not get a loan if A) you have zero credit B) your parents still refuse to cosign with you C) your parents still claim you on their taxes.
If you've lived with your parents in the past tax season, they have to claim you, unless you go through the process of emancipating yourself. I would recommenced researching exactly what you have to do for that, and if it would help you or not.
If you just go in and apply for a loan the way things are now, you probably won't get it. I've gone through the same thing at your age, and it's fairly ridiculous.
You wouldn't be able to get a private loan without your own good credit or a cosigner, but you can definitely get a federal government loan on your own.
Here's what you need to do:
1) Fill out the FAFSA. This will determine if you are eligible for financial aid. Go here:
2) Once you are eligible for aid, choose a government-based student loan. The best loan to get is a Federal Perkins Loan. These have low interest rates and the government will help you pay it back as long as you stay enrolled in school. You also don't need a cosigner or good credit for it. For more info go here:
3) The next best loan to get is a Subsidized Stafford Loan. This has many of the same benefits as a Perkins Loan. Learn more here:
4) You can also try to get a grant or scholarship, which is free money that you won't have to pay back. Look here:
If you can, I would borrow as much Federal Aid as you can, as these loans have better interest rates and have Federal Benefits. If that is not enough to cover the 15,000 you need, you can always take out a Private Student Loan, but these are credit based and usually have a higher interest rate than Federal Student Loans.
The maximum amount that you are able to borrow from the Federal Student Loan Program varies depending on whether you are an independent student or a dependent student, and also has a maximum amount per year you can borrow. If you are in need of more funds during a given year, your parents could apply for a Parent PLUS Loan. Your parents would be responsible for the loan, but the funds would go to you, the student.
Federal Student Loans can be used for travel expenses, books, food, school supplies, etc. The loan amount that you are approved for and you agree to borrow will be disbursed starting with your tuition costs for that semester, moving to your room and board if you live on campus, and then satisfying any other school fees you may have. After that the left over funds will be sent to you, usually in the form of a check. You can do what you wish with these funds.
You are eligible for Federal Student Loans as long as you are attending school at least halftime. If you are below halftime status as a student, you will not be eligible for Federal Student Loan help. Your status is determined by the school and the amount of credit hours you are taking during a given semester.
For more information and for a chart which breaks down how much you can borrow each year, please see the source below.
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