Tips: College aid season is now open

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(CNN) — The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is now available.

College aid season opened Oct. 1, and education officials say to fill it out as soon as possible because some awards are first come, first served.

Even if your family might not qualify for need-based aid, sometimes schools have different merit-based scholarships, and schools use the federal form to determine most aid.

Another reason to submit the form as soon as possible is because 13 states award financial aid on a first come, first served basis.

So, if you’re in one of these states then get that form online or fill it out on the My Student Aid app.

Experts say there are simpler ways to get this done, like the free website called Frank, which has streamlined the process.

Current and prospective college students have until the end of June to submit their FAFSA, but deadlines vary depending on your state and college.

Experts recommend you do your research to make sure you submit the FAFSA on time, and that the biggest challenge when filling it out is the number of questions.

There are 100 of them, but remember, it’s all for free cash for college.

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