If you have to borrow for freshman year of college - won't you have to borrow for all four years?
This just isn't a good idea. There are lower cost alternatives, and freshman year is the best time to try one of these alternatives.
Of course - community college is the best known solution. Heck, many kids aren't ready emotionally to go away to college at age 18 anyway. It sounds exciting - but today's kids are used to living "a certain lifestyle" - and sharing a bedroom is not part of that lifestyle!
And, how many of us know kids who have gone off to college only to come back home for one reason or another. If they had borrowed money for the semester, it really stinks.
Why not skip the dance, and just have your child stay at home and go to community college freshman year?
Community colleges are a great way for kids to segue into college. They can also, perhaps, get their grades up and be better qualified for aid when they go to a 4 year college. Your child should also be working and saving for the four year school. (So should you).
Did you know that there are many nationally-known companies that have terrific tuition reimbursement programs? Your child can work at Starbucks, UPS, Fed Ex - and many other companies, and get tuition reimbursement right away. Check their websites for information. Your child can live at home and work at one of these well-known companies and begin profiting right away!
Does your child have a patriotic bent? I wouldn't suggest this unless your child wants to go this route, but wow - the tuition benefits are really outstanding. My son is interested in joining up. The question is how this will happen. I want him to go to college, try the ROTC program freshman year to make sure it's for him, then try for a scholarship sophomore year. He is not as forthcoming as I would like, but I fear he will enlist right out of high school.
Did you know that there are hundreds of English-language programs at universities in Europe that are downright cheap? Cheaper than many community colleges! Of course, the student would have to live somewhere, but what a crazy wonderful thing!
I'm a personal finance geek. A real estate investor. An accountant, a single mother. And I'm going to get my kids through college without student debt! Will you?