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Are Student Loans The Best Way to Finance your Education?

by James Tang (1099 views)
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As the new term for the university is soon to begin, some of us may be pondering over what are some of the best ways to actually finance our studies. True, there are probably tonnes of ways to finance your education without getting loans such as securing a scholarship, but not many of us may be fortunate enough to be able to procure one. If you are amongst the many that are pondering over the best option to finance your education, fret not! Today, we’ll be covering some of the ways to finance your education here in Singapore without racking up a substantial amount of money.

Bank Loans and Tuition Fee Grants

This very common technique is often used by students to finance their education because of the relative ease of obtaining a loan from the bank or educational institute. Some of the common bank loans are the DBS study loan, OCBC’s FRANK Tuition Fee Loan, and CIMB’s study loan. These are considered bank loans and they have relatively few differences amongst them. Both the DBS study loan and OCBC’s Frank Tuition Fee Loan do not require students to pay interest during the duration of their studies while CIMB requires interest during one’s undergraduate study years. You can read up more on their respective repayment options and see which one would fit your study and repayment plans.

The thing about bank loans is that most people that choose to use them may actually be considering it for overseas education. If you’ve secured a place in a local university such as NUS, SMU, NTU, SUTD, SIT or SUSS, then the tuition fee loan from the school itself may be a better option. Besides being interest fee during the duration of your study, they offer attractive repayment packages that may be better than bank loans. For more information, refer to the finance section on your school’s website.

CPF Education Scheme

Next up, we have the CPF Education scheme which many people may not think about immediately. The scheme allows one’s parents to use their CPF savings in their ordinary account to subsidise or pay the tuition fees completely. Loans have to be repaid to the ordinary account once you have graduated and the student will receive a letter 3 months before the commencement of loan repayment. The thing about the CPF Education Scheme, however, is that interests on the amount withdrawn will kick in from the time the savings are withdrawn right up till the loan is fully repaid. If that doesn’t appeal to you or your parents, then the final alternative is of course to secure a scholarship.

Scholarships

Scholarships are often overlooked but there exists a whole lot of it out there if you are willing to search. Depending on your financial status, there are a variety of different scholarships available, ranging from those that are catered to needy students to those that are available to the public. Everyone has an equal opportunity to secure one of the scholarships out there so plan your education and extra curriculum activities carefully if you are aiming for one of these.

Savings

Ultimately, the best way to ensure that you are able to finance your studies in university is to save up early. For men in Singapore, National Service is a great way to start saving for your studies in the future. For the ladies, on the other hand, working part time during your studies is a way to finance your studies and it will also ensure your loans get repaid at a faster rate at the end of the day.