Dear Subscriber –
Today’s Wall Street Journal lead story is a bummer – “College
Debt Hits Well-Off.”
The article details how middle class families saw the biggest
increase in student debt between 2007 and 2010. One memorable
quote, by a parent of a student recently admitted to Notre
She felt trapped in financial purgatory, between “people with lower
incomes who have a lot of (financial aid), and the truly affluent.”
On one hand, the mom was proud and happy that her daughter got into
Notre Dame! But once their lousy financial aid offer arrived, mom’s
elation turned to stress faster than Usain Bolt.
Does this feel familiar? If you’re stressed about being stuck in the
middle class college finance purgatory, your only chance of getting
out is to arm yourself with tested and proven strategies and tactics
to beat the overpriced, rip-off colleges at their own game.
Think the colleges are on your side? Better give that another thought.
The article points out that college costs have doubled since 1985. College
costs spike up on good economies and lousy economies, without
regard to whether families can afford to send their children. They’re
engaged in a sick arms race.
Yet, many families have seen their college savings accounts drop
by huge amounts, leaving them in the lurch and without a plan to pay.
Here are my suggestions if you have a Class of 2013, 2014 or even
* Learn everything you can about how the financial aid system works –
last survey I read indicated 53% of ELIGIBLE families don’t bother
applying! Don’t leave m.oney on the table out of ignorance
* Broaden your college search to include colleges where your child
will be in the top 25% of incoming applicants in terms of grades
and standardized test scores. Your chances of merit-based funding
are much greater at these schools
* Apply to a set of colleges that have historically competed against
each other (yes – re-read that if you must) so you can play them
off one another once you receive offers of financial assistance
* Treat your student’s candidacy for college as a marketing campaign.
You must build a unique, well-rounded and ATYPICAL student using
interesting extra-curricular activities early on in high school – NOT
at the last minute. Don’t do the same crap that every other student
I’ve got three college planning workshops slated for this month. There is no
charge to attend but the information I give out will be extremely
valuable. I’m not saying that to brag – it’s factual.
For example, I’ll tell the story of EXACTLY how I helped a Port
Washington man get an extra $30,022 for his daughter for her freshman
year, above and beyond the already decent, “final” award she originally
received. I’m not charging for the presentation, but it could be worth
$30K – per year – to you!
We still have room but last month’s workshops were packed – standing
room only. And July is a “slow month.”
So register now before my ads hit – you can even bring a friend who’s
uptight about paying for college. Just forward this e-mail to them – they’ll thank
Hope to see you at a workshop!
– Andy Lockwood
P.S. If you have specific questions, bring them along and I’ll let you
put me on the “hot seat.” Sometimes people ask me about divorced
situations, or about owning a small business, having money in their
own names and so forth. Ask away!
Andrew Lockwood, J.D.
Lockwood College Consulting
497 South Oyster Bay Road
Plainview, New York 11803