You could always do with more money to cover your college expenses. Fortunately, you can get most of that money through scholarships, grants, work-study, and even student loans (as a last resort). But what if you need more? Should you crowdfund for your college tuition? More importantly, can students actually get the money they need for college through crowdfunding campaigns?

Crowdfunding for College

The answer may surprise you. Initially used to raise capital for charities and start-up businesses, more and more students are not turning to crowdfunding to raise funds to pay for college.

An important thing to remember is that you cannot raise ALL the money through this avenue. The way crowdfunding works is that you launch a campaign requesting funds to help you pay for college. Donors then donate what they can to help you meet your goals. This does not mean you can use this as an easy way to pay for college without taking on any loans or working towards earning scholarship awards.

Where crowdfunding works really well is to help you raise funds for stop-gap financial needs. For example you could start a campaign to raise the balance that you still need AFTER borrowing to pay towards any college related-expenses. The most successful crowdfunding campaigns are those that are very specific about what the money is going to be used for—such as textbooks or room and board.

Keep in Mind

Any money you raise through a crowdfunding campaign will be taxed and needs to be reported—which can affect your financial neediness given that you now have money you didn’t before. Make sure you read up on all guidelines and keep on top of financial aid procedures.

All in all, crowdfunding isn’t a bad way to get some extra money to cover college expense gaps. However, it shouldn’t be your first priority—that’s reserved for scholarships and grants.

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