October 2, 2008 · Updated 2:54 PM
Kids in college? Loan program can help
By Fred Reich
Educational Finance Group
Under the provisions of the U.S. Higher Education Act, parents may
be eligible to receive their student's total cost of education, including
living expenses, less any other financial aid awarded. This money is
available through the Parent Loan for Under Graduate Student (PLUS)
Program, regardless of income and assets and with no collateral requirement.
Many families have found the PLUS to be an attractive alternative to
depleting their savings, paying out of pocket, or borrowing against their home or 401K.
Who is Eligible?
All U.S. citizens and resident aliens are eligible, regardless of
income level. Your family qualifies if you are the natural, step or
adoptive parent of a dependent undergraduate student who is under age 24,
single with no dependents and going to school at least half-time.
Which Schools Participate?
Most universities, colleges, trade and vocational schools participate
in the Federal Family Education Loan Program. Educational Finance
Group (EFG) will confirm your school's participation at (800) 480-0392. This
call is free.
How Much Can a Parent Borrow?
You may be eligible to borrow up to the total cost of your child's
education including tuition, room and board, books, travel and administrative
fees. School costs vary, but EFG will provide you with an estimate of
your school's costs. Contact EFG even if you are considering several
schools, or are uncertain about the amount you'll need. Because processing
time of PLUS applications varies from school to school, it is best to
inquire as soon as possible.
What are the Terms of the Loan?
The Federal PLUS is a simple interest, noncollateral loan with a
variable interest rate that is capped at 9 percent. EFG will provide
details about current interest rates. The Federal PLUS is government
guaranteed and offers a variety of repayment plans including deferrals in the event of
financial hardships, no prepayment penalties and loan forgiveness in
Some Repayment Examples
$5,000 - $64/mo.
$10,000 - $127/mo.
$15,000 - $190/mo.
$20,000 - $254/mo.
$25,000 - $317/mo.
What Credit Requirements Apply?
Credit standards for the Federal PLUS are more lenient than most
private loans. Many families with negative credit histories qualify.
Is the Interest Tax Deductible?
In some cases yes, under the provisions of the U.S. Taxpayer
I've Already Paid the College Bill, Can I Be Reimbursed?
Under the Federal PLUS Program, a parent may be reimbursed for
educational costs already paid that academic year. Deadlines for
reimbursement vary from school to school. EFG will provide current information
to your school.
How Do I Get a PLUS?
Call EFG at (800) 480-0392 or check out www.schoolfunds.net.
Fall City's Silvia appears in college production
Jonathan Silvia, a 1998 graduate of Mount Si High School,
recently appeared in the Lawrence University opera theatre production of
Mozart's "The Marriage of Figaro."
Silvia played the character of Antonio, the comical drunk gardener.
A sophomore at Lawrence, he is the son of Phillip and Yvonne Silvia, of
Founded in 1947, Lawrence University is a leading national liberal
arts college with an associated conservatory of music. It has produced
seven Rhodes Scholars and was cited by U.S. News and World Report in its
1999-2000 Guide to American Colleges as one of the country's top 40 "best
national liberal arts colleges."
at Chief Kanim
The Chief Kanim Middle School P.T.S.A. will host a major
fund-raising event on Wednesday, March 29.
From 5 to 7 p.m., parents will be serving up baked potatoes with all
the fixings along with a salad and a drink. Dinners are $2 for children and $3
There will also be a Barnes & Noble book fair in the school's
library from 5 to 7:30 p.m. The proceeds from the sale will benefit the library.
For more information call Chief Kanim Middle School at (425)