Paying for college without parents

Paying for college without financial support from parents can be very challenging. Let's find ways to ease your financial burdens, read this blog to explore your options.

Updated by Bapi Rakshit on 3rd July 2019

Paying for college without parents

Paying for college is relatively easy when you have the financial help from your family. However, sponsoring your own college does not have to mean drowning in debt.

Here are few financial options to oversee your college expenses.

  • Consider an affordable In-State or community college

You can save a huge amount by choosing a community college for two years with credit transfer facility living at home and then transferring the credits to the 4-year program.

Also, while transferring, the sort of college you go to has a major effect on your bill.

Online, In-state colleges are altogether less expensive than their private and out-of-state partners.

  • How to apply for Scholarship and grants to pay for online colleges?

Scholarships and grants should be considered before applying for a loan.

It is more logical to go for a scholarship if you can secure one.

Because unlike loans you don’t have to pay back scholarship and grants.

What are the various types of scholarships?

There are various scholarships available for students. The key is, one should apply for as many as possible throughout the college career as it will increase their chances.

  • Academic Scholarships

  • Average Academic Performance Scholarships

  • Athletic Scholarships

  • Creative Scholarships

  • Community Service Scholarships

  • Minority Scholarship

  • Scholarships for Women

  • Unusual Scholarships

What are various types of Grants?

While scholarships are a foundation to provide financial assistance to students according to their merit, Grants are more need-based and are accessible to students based on parents salary.

Both types of award are offered through numerous sources of funding, including the government, different organizations, non-profits, schools and individual donors.

Types  of grants are listed below

  • Federal Grants

  • Private Grants

  • College-Based Grants

How to get a student’s loan to pay for college?

There are two ways of getting a student’s loan

  • Federal Student Loan: These types of Loans are provided by the federal government through the Federal Direct Loan Program. There are three types of federal loans-
    • Direct Subsidized Loan

    • Direct Unsubsidized Loan

    • Direct Plus Loans

  • Private Organisation: It is advisable that a student should opt for a private loan only after applying for the scholarship, Grants, and Federal Loans and still need money. The interest rates on Private Loans are higher compared to Federal Loans. Types of Private Loans are listed below
    • Private Student Loan

    • Parent Loan

How to find the best loan?

Step1: Fill the FAFSA. It will qualify you for government advances, which for the most part have the best terms.

Step2: Contact your college’s financial aid guide to get information about loans through your college.

Step3: Check with the U.S. Department of Education to get some answers about state loans.


Even though your parents aren’t involved in paying for your college education, it does not mean you have to do it all alone. The ideal approach to set up your funds for college is to plan early. Examine with your parents about your monetary status as early as possible as it will give you a sensible figure of where you remain with the funds. Apart from these cost-cutting methods, money-saving also helps a great deal.