How to Evaluate a Financial Aid Consultant

If you are facing trouble in figuring out how to get through the financial aid process then hiring a consultant is certainly your best bet. However, it is not as easy as you think. Remember, your case is completely depends on your consultant so you must evaluate whether he/she is suitable for you or not.

Financial aid consultants provide variety of services. For example, they help you in filling the confusing forms and submitting them in proper manner. They also make strategies to make your appeal strong.

There is no debate in their effectiveness but still you must keep couple of things in mind while hiring a financial aid consultant.


  • 1

    When to hire:

    First of all, you must know when to hire a financial aid consultant. You should not hire one if you have a straightforward income situation and you are able to get through all the paperwork without any confusion.

  • 2

    Do some research:

    You can evaluate a consultant even before meeting him. The best way is to conduct an in-house survey. Ask your friends and relatives to suggest some good consultants. Make a list of the consultants and then match the list with the list of your campus financial aid office. If a professional is handling more than one case then it shows that he/she is a successful and credible consultant.

  • 3

    Ask about the experience:

    Now, when you have decided a name, fix a meeting and try to find out how long they have been working. It is very necessary as you can give your case in the hands of an amateur. Make sure that your consultant is an experienced professional.

  • 4

    Check the success rate:

    Next think you should do is to check your potential consultant’s success rate. Good and professional consultants always maintain a record of their clients so ask the person to provide you that list. This will help you to decide whether to hire that consultant or not.

  • 5

    Consider the moral values:

    You must consider the moral values of the consultant. If he/she encourages you to do something unethical then do not hire that person as lying about your financial condition can lead you to further trouble.

  • 6

    Ask them about qualification:

    Last but not the least, you must ask them about their qualifications. A consultant should be a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) or Certified Financial Planner (CFP).

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