How Homeschoolers can Save Money by Waiving SAT/ACT/College Application Fees

Welcome back to the 2nd annual event of 10 Days of Homeschooling for Free and Frugal. You can read the entire series from the beginning on the Homeschooling for Free and Frugal series beginning post.

Save Money by Waiving SAT/ACT/College Application Fees


This post is by Lee Binz, The Homescholar.

When parents make the commitment to homeschool their children, it’s not just an educational commitment.  There are other ramifications too, like forgoing a second full-time income.  While many families have found ways for the at-home parent to earn a little part-time money, it’s rare to find homeschooling families where both parents work full-time outside the home.

In addition to being single-income families, homeschoolers tend to incur more educational costs as well, since the government does not pick up the tab for our expenses. We pay for our own curriculum, supplies, and teacher manuals, field trips, lesson costs, and testing services. There are certainly ways to cut down on costs, like sharing curriculum, forming co-ops with friends, etc., but there’s a definite cost that comes with the choice to homeschool.

As children get into high school, and start to think about college, these costs continue.  It doesn’t get cheaper as kids get older.  For some families, finances are a huge issue, even while they are committed to homeschooling through high school.  I know parents who have come up with all sorts of creative ways to supply their children’s needs, because they are committed to teaching their children at home.  If you’re committed to homeschooling, as your children get older it’s especially important to plan ahead, because there are things you can do in high school to save thousands of dollars on college costs!

SAT/ACT Expenses and Waivers

If your high school student is headed to college, the SAT or ACT will be required for admission.  In order to get good scholarships, students need to score well, which sometimes means spending money on test prep.  Sometimes local libraries offer practice tests for the SAT/ACT, which is great experience and generally free, so check with your library to see if they offer this.  If you’d like to learn more about the SAT and the ACT, and how your student can improve their scores, I offer a free webinar called Taking the Mystery Out of the SAT/ACT.  Co-hosted with Andrew Pudewa from the Institute for Excellence in Writing, it’s a great (free!) way to help you prepare.

Homeschoolers can save money on the SAT or ACT by requesting fee waivers.  For both tests, homeschoolers must provide proof of eligibility to your local high school.  These waivers can’t be completed by the SAT or ACT company; they must be provided by a high school, but it never hurts to ask.  They will usually only waive the fee for the test one time.  There are waivers available for both the SAT and the ACT.

Application Fees and Waivers

In addition to testing expenses, most colleges charge a fee when a student submits an application, which typically ranges from $50-100.  Many colleges will waive the application fee if you ask them to.  Many colleges will waive the application fee if you visit their school and request an application.  Ask them!  Other colleges are so eager for qualified students that they will ask you to apply to their college at no cost.  For that reason, getting great SAT or ACT test scores can allow you to apply to more colleges for less money.

NACAC Request for Application Fee Waiver

If you can’t get a fee waiver, you can try requesting one through the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC) website. Read the rules and make sure you are eligible.  You will have to provide financial information if you want a fee waiver, but it’s doable!  And it can save you money!

High School Help

Don’t doubt it for a second – you CAN homeschool high school! You don’t have to be afraid – you won’t ruin your child’s future or jeopardize their college chances! You can provide a superior high school education for your kids that will open doors for them. Don’t waste money on accrediting agencies or diploma-granting companies. Your homeschool grades, credits, and transcripts are official, and colleges all over the country accept them.  For more free information, visit my website, including my freebies, where you’ll learn everything you need to know about homeschooling high school and getting college admission and scholarships—without spending tons of money!

Lee Binz, The HomeScholar helps parents homeschool high school and is a leading internet home school resource helping parents homeschool to college.   She is an expert in how to craft a winning homeschool transcripts.  She has an award-winning Christian homeschool blog and one of the most popular homeschool newsletters available.   Lee is a dynamic homeschool speaker at homeschooling conventions as well as homeschooling support groups.  Check out her homeschool online free mini-course and training webinar on how to give homeschool credit in high school.   You can find Lee online at and on

This series is part of iHomeschool Network Hopscotch 2013.




  1. says

    We are in South Africa, and even though my kids still got a way to go for their final years, we also will be doing the GED and SAT.
    Why you may wonder. The passing rate in SA is extremely low and our educational system is a joke. BUT I am more than happy to pay the fees for them to do the GED and SAT exam, as it does not even cost a quarter of what it will cost us here in SA to do their matric, kinda sad hey.

  2. Tammy Kindig says

    Our oldest never did take her SAT’s. She graduated High School in 2006 and has graduated college with an A.A. in Psychology, B.A. in Education and is working on her Master’s. I really think the SAT is over rated.

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