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The College Solution: A Guide for Everyone Looking for the Right School at the Right Price, Second Edition by Lynn O’Shaughnessy

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11. Will Saving for College Hurt Your Financial Aid Chances?

Families who save for college are in a much better position than families who do not.

—Mark Kantrowitz, publisher FinAid.org

One night after I had finished a talk at a suburban Philadelphia high school, a parent broached a subject that he didn’t want others still lingering in the auditorium to hear.

He asked me if it would be okay to hide money for financial aid purposes. He had received an inheritance, and he was worried that it would hurt his teenager’s chances for receiving need-based aid.

I explained to him that hiding money for financial aid purposes is illegal. As it turned out, the amount of money he inherited, about $100,000, would make little impact on his teenager’s odds of ...

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