You can apply for financial aid even before you’ve been accepted to a college or soon after you file your taxes. Most applicants follow this guideline:

For summer and fall, we recommend that you apply immediately after January 1, but not before this date. Any application that is received before January 1 for the fall semester of the following year will not be processed and you’ll have to reapply.

For spring, we recommend that you apply before November so that your financial aid application is processed before you begin classes.