You can apply starting October 1 of every year for the following academic year you will be attending.
Apply as early as you can. Earlier applications can mean more money for you. The income information requires on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is from the previously completed calendar year, so it 's not necessary to estimate your income. Even if changes are required later, the original application date is the one that is used in determining what funds you will be awarded.
The Federal Pell Grant and Federal Direct Loan Programs are available to all students who meet established eligibility criteria, regardless of your FAFSA application date. However, other federal and state financial aid programs are not as plentiful and are therefore awarded on a "first come, first served" basis.