Graduate Students

Student Lines of Credit

How is this different from the Government Student Loan?

The main difference between a student line of credit and the government student loan program is in how the interest accumulates and how the loans are repaid. If you qualify for a student line of credit, you will usually be responsible for all the interest that accrues as soon as you take funds from your line of credit. If you do not take any funds from your line of credit, there will be no interest. In addition, you will usually have to make monthly interest payments on the amount you've borrowed while you are in school.

In contrast, if you qualify for a government student loan you will not accrue interest or make any monthly payments, provided you are enrolled as a full-time student and you take the appropriate steps to update your enrollment information.

For BC Residents, apply via StudentAid BC. For Out of Province Loans, apply via the National Student Loan Service Centre.

Recommendation

Due to the advantages offered by the government student loan program, we recommend you apply for a government loan first before looking at student lines of credit. If you do decide to pursue private funding sources, be sure to shop around and research the terms and conditions carefully as they can vary between financial institutions. A co-signer may also be required.

Banks: