Free federal money for college is available for all students. It comes in the forms of grants and loans. Pell Grants are available for students from low income families. This grant is based on your total family income. While some students with very large families will be able to get a grant with a family income of up to $50,000, most Pell Grants go to those with less than $20,000.
Pell Grants are generally only for undergraduates although there are exemptions for students working on their first post-bachelor's professional degree. The maximum Pell Grant award is $4600.
The other form of free federal money for college comes in the form of student loans. There are two types of Stafford Student Loans. Undergraduates can get up to $12,500 per year.
There are both subsidized and unsubsidized loans. With subsidized Stafford Loans, the government pays the interest while you are in school. The unsubsidized loans require that you pay the interest right away. You can either pay the interest while you are in school or defer it until you finish school. However, if you delay it, the interest will compound.
The amount of Stafford Loan you can get each year depends on your year in school and your dependent status. First year students whose parents report them on their income taxes can get up to $5500. Juniors and Seniors get up to $7500. If a student's parents do not claim them, they can get $9500 to $12,500 for their undergraduate years.
If you are struggling to find a way to finance your higher education goals, look into getting free federal money for college.