VET Student Loans is a government loan available to help eligible students pay their tuition fees. The loan is issued by the Australian Government to make higher education more accessible, by removing the burden of upfront tuition fees.
VET Student Loans allows you to study now and pay later when you’re earning sufficient income to do so. The VET Student Loans program replaces the old VET FEE-HELP for new students commencing a course after 1 Jan 2017.
You are eligible for VET Student Loans if:
- You are an Australian citizen or
- A permanent humanitarian visa holder who resides in Australia for the duration of the unit of study for which you are seeking a VET Student Loan or
- A New Zealand Citizens who meets the minimum long-term residency requirements
- You are a full fee-paying student, enrolled in an approved VET Student Loans course through an approved VET provider such as Strategix, and remain enrolled in the unit at the end of the census date
- You have a USI or are otherwise exempt
- You have a tax file number
- You have met the minimum entry requirements by:
- Providing a copy of your Australian Year 12 Completion Certificate or
- Providing evidence of successful completion of an Australian Qualifications Framework Certificate IV or higher level qualification or
- Complete a Language, Literacy and Numeracy assessment and achieve a minimum exit level 3 in Reading and Numeracy. The LLN is determined by the Department of Education but administered by Strategix after enrolment.
VET student loans will not be approved for students who do not meet eligibility requirements. For more information on VET Student Loans and eligibility view the fact sheets on the Department of Education and Training website www.education.gov.au/vet-student-loans
For 2018, the Fee-HELP limit is $102,392 for most students. Students should be aware that any Fee-HELP loan (including a VET student loan) may affect their borrowing capacity. Students who are unsure should seek independent financial advice before applying.
For more information on VET Student Loans read the information handbook published by the Department of Education and Training available by clicking here.
There are no interest charged on HELP debts. The HELP debt is, however, indexed each year. it increases annually to maintain its real value, adjusting in line with changes in the cost of living.
Although the loan does not incur any interest, a 20 per cent loan applies to full fee paying students. The loan fee does not count towards your FEE-HELP limit. A VET Student Loan gives rise to a HELP debt that continues to be a debt due to the Commonwealth until it is repaid.
How is a VET Student Loan repaid? The Australian Government pays the amount of the loan direct to a student’s provider for tuition fees. Students make repayments on their loans through the Australian Taxation System for each financial year they earn over the threshold. The threshold changes each year. For the 2017-18 financial year the threshold is $55,874. The amount you repay each year is calculated as a percentage of your repayment income. It increases and decreases with your income. The repayments range from a minimum of 4% to a maximum of 8% per annum of your taxable income. For years in which you earn under the repayment threshold there are no mandatory repayments.
For example: If your loan is $5,000, and your taxable income is $60,000 in one financial year, you will make a repayment equal to 4% of $60,000. This means you will make a total repayment of $2,400 leaving a loan balance of $2,600 which will be paid in subsequent years. Students can also elect to make voluntary repayments to pay off their loan sooner. For more information read the fact sheets Department of Education and Training website www.education.gov.au/vet-student-loans
Applying for VET Student Loans:
The Australian Government has limited the courses and number of VET student loan eligible places. If you find a course that suits your career goals and would like to use VET Student Loans to cover your tuition fees we would encourage you to complete your enrolment as soon as possible to avoid any disappointment of missing out.
After completing the enrolment form one of our friendly staff members will contact you to discuss all aspects of your course enrolment. If you are eligible for VET student loans and meet the minimum entry requirements you will be required to complete an electronic Commonwealth Assistance Form (eCAF). The eCAF confirms that you would like to use a VET student loan and links your Tax File Number to your enrolment with Strategix. This form must be completed prior to your first census date.
Students utilising VET Student Loans may be required to complete an online progression form at various points during their enrolment and to be actively engaged in the course. Not doing so may result in your enrolment being cancelled. The online progression forms inform the Australian Government that you would like to continue to use the VET student loan to pay your tuition fees.
If you have any further questions or need some additional help please don’t hesitate to contact us, and we will be happy to assist you.
The below table shows courses with VET Student Loan places and additional payment methods.