How to get a student line of credit – ft. Julie van Sabben
June 23, 2020
Hi everyone, my name is Julie van Sabben. I work at the Sunova Credit Union Lac du Bonnet branch and I also happen to be an expert on loans and student lines of credit in Manitoba. If you’re a student, I say “lucky you!” for stumbling upon this blog post.
If you’re off to any accredited post-secondary institution in the fall, you will likely need help paying for it. That’s where I (and many of my wonderful co-workers) come in. We’re here to offer expert advice along with the knowledge and tools you’ll need to make your years at school successful.
Below, I go over some of the most frequently asked questions regarding student lines of credit. As always, if you have questions, don’t hesitate to get in touch with me or another great lender at your local branch.
What is a student line of credit?
A line of credit is kind of like a loan, except you use what you need, and you only pay interest on the portion you’ve used. Here are a few details on student lines of credit:
- While you’re in school, there are no scheduled payments. Rather, at the end of each month, the interest you’ve used will come off your line of credit amount.
- Once you’ve completed your schooling, you will still have up to 12 months of interest-only payments.
- After the 12-month period, the line of credit will be flipped into a loan and regular payments will start.
What is the first step to getting a student line of credit?
To get started, you’ll need a cosigner. Sunova realizes money is tight while you’re in school, so we don’t expect you to be able to afford the debt all on your own. This is where your cosigner comes in. A cosigner is someone who signs on the debt with you, and if for any reason you can’t repay your student line of credit, then the cosigner would need to make the payments for you.
A cosigner on your student line of credit could be your mom, dad, or guardian, but aunts and uncles, grandparents and the like work too.
What do I need to get a student line of credit?
Once you have your cosigner and get yourself to your nearest Sunova Credit Union, you’ll want to bring a few things to help with the process.
- Your photo ID
- Your SIN
- Something confirming your enrollment in school
Your cosigner will also need to bring in a few things too.
- Their photo ID and SIN
- Something that shows their income (like a couple of paystubs)
- A list of everything they own (a mental list will do)
- A breakdown of all their debt and obligations and payments
Who is eligible for and how much can I borrow with a student line of credit?
Great question! Both full-time and part-time students entering any year of post-secondary education at a Canadian or non-Canadian university, college, or registered vocational school are eligible for a student line of credit.
- Full-time students can borrow up to $10,000 per year to a maximum of $40,000 over four years of study.
- Part-time students can borrow up to $5000 per year to a maximum of $40,000 over eight years of study
- Students enrolled in graduate studies can borrow to $60,000 depending on the cost and length of the program.
Are there any other tools available to students that could help with their finances?
I’m glad you asked. Sunova has a number of tools and resources available to students:
- A no-fee monthly student chequing account
- A cash back Sunova Mastercard® to help you build credit while in school
- A Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA) that allows you to save money without paying taxes on earned interest, so your money grows more quickly
- Our Nickel + Dime savings account which will round up your purchases to the nearest dollar and put the difference in a savings account
- Our pre-paid Aura Loyalty™ Mastercard®, with built-in cash rewards
About me! (Julie van Sabben)
I’ve worked at Sunova for 13 years and love helping members achieve their financial goals and dreams. In my spare time I like to be with my husband, two kids, and our dog, play baseball, cross-country ski, kayak, and spend time at the family cabin in Saskatchewan.