Government Student Loans
Like many people, you may need student loans to help finance your school years.
Federal, provincial and territorial governments all offer student loan programs to help you. They are awarded on the basis of financial need.
Student loan rules
1. Student loans must be paid back. You will need to start repaying them shortly after you leave school.
2. You must apply every year to be considered for a loan.
3. The amount of your loan is based on your financial situation and the loan program rules.
4. Your loan is either issued to you by the government, or by a financial institution that either you (or the government) has designated. While there are exceptions, you normally get your money in 2 installments in a school year: 1 during your first term, and 1 during your second.
5. Keep track of who issues you the money—they are the ones you will need to pay back once you have finished school.
6. Government student loan programs for students who study full-time don’t charge interest until you have finished school. Because of this, it's critical to tell your loan providers each year that you are returning to school.
7. Interest starts to accumulate when you leave school, but you don't have to make payments until 6 months later. If you prefer, you can make your interest payments during this 6-month period.
8. It's your responsibility to keep your loan providers up-to-date on your contact information. If they can’t find you, they might not be able to set up repayment with you. This could cause your loans to go into default, which could affect your credit rating, possibly ruining your chances to borrow in the future.
9. Borrow wisely. Make sure you are aware of how much you are borrowing, and never borrow more than you think you need.
To learn about government student loans in Canada, and whether you should apply for a Canada Student Loan, Integrated Student loan or provincial or territorial student loan, explore the Getting a Student Loan pages.