So, you’ve decided you want to go to college, but it seems impossible to make it happen without any money saved up. Luckily, there are a lot of options for students to make going to college a reality while on a budget. Here are a few things you can do to go to school without paying full price:


When applying for college, it’s essential that you file for FASFA (Free Application for Student Federal Aid) before the deadline. Depending on your financial situation, you could be eligible to go to school for free. Even if you don’t go for free, you could still receive thousands of dollars of free money to go towards your education.

Scholarships And Grants

Scholarships and grants do not need to be repaid and are awarded by the college based on your financial needs reported in your FASFA. The amount of your grant can vary, but Federal Pell Grants cap out at $5,920 per year and go to families who earn less than $30,000 per year. You can also find hundreds of scholarship opportunities online.


Taking out a loan should be your last resort, but sometimes they’re unavoidable. Try borrowing money from the federal government first before borrowing from a private lender. Federal loans offer lower interest rates and can only be granted if you fill out your FASFA. You could also qualify for a subsidized loan, which won’t accumulate interest until after you graduate.

Tax Breaks

The American Opportunity Tax Credit allows students or parents to claim their college tuition, fees, books, and room and board. Doing so will give you up to a $2,500 tax refund. You could use this money to pay for a semester or begin paying back your student loans early.


Applying for a work-study job is a great way to get meet people on campus and earn money to pay for school. Work-studies are part-time jobs that you can qualify for by filling out your FASFA. You will earn an hourly wage that won’t exceed the amount of money awarded by FASFA.