Canada Student Loans Regrets

According to a new poll on student loans, many Canadians regret how they spent their loans.

Andrew Park, a 30-year-old resident in Toronto, paid off student loans he had received during his post-secondary education last year. This was 10+ years after commencing his post-secondary studies.

Andrew racked up these loans during his time at the University of Toronto, studying Life Sciences. His post-secondary education started in 2005 and ended with masters in Political Science from McMaster University in 2012.

Andrew had planned to pay the Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP) borrowed loans after he graduated, but other factors would always get in his way. Talking to global news, Andrew exclaimed how his plans slowed down due to paying bills and dealing with expenses of independent living. These are the things that caused him to side-track his plan after paying half of his loans.

He regrets that he did not have the skills to handle OSAP payments. Looking back, Park wishes he had started working earlier and saving money.

Interestingly, Andrew is just one among the many wishing that they had followed a different route.

Student loans regrets

Of all Canadian graduates who are aged below 40, 77% regret how they spent their money while in school. This is according to a survey released by BDO, a debt firm in Canada.

The Ispos done poll illustrated that 30% of graduates regret not having frugal budgets while 25% regret not working more during their study years. Furthermore, 25% regret not avoiding more debts in form of car loans and credit cards.

Only about 33 percent of the Canadians in the poll said that they had graduated debt free. This means that 67% of the respondents had debt after graduation. Moreover, 62% of the respondents with debt have not yet fully repaid their loans to date, according to the poll.

Incoming students advised

The former students encouraged the incoming students to be smarter with money, which will go a long way in helping them clear their loans.

According to half of the respondents surveyed, students ought to make sacrifices financially and start doing part-time jobs right after settling down in school. In addition, 45% called on students to pay debts early.

Some graduates (39%) advised students to delay post-secondary education, so as to work a couple of years first. This is something Janessa Tom, a University of British Columbia student, thinks is a good idea. According to her, such a move will put you in a better position financially, if you are budgeting and controlling your spending.

Although Tom has parents willing to help her pay off her loans, she already has thousands of dollars in debts. Tuition is not her only expense as she also spends on groceries, rent/utilities, and car insurance. She hopes that people out there will understand that students don’t get loans because they are lazy.

Her opinion is that students have to get loans since some full courses don’t allow one the time to work a job. The time demand of studying these courses is equivalent to taking a full-time job.

Paying off student loans

Because of his huge debt, Andrew had to put off things like saving for retirement, traveling, family planning and general savings.

After paying off all his student loans, the newlywed felt that he was free to invest in other areas of his life. This is evident because he has even ditched his old car and bought a Ford Focus. To boost that, he feels more confident when talking about financial issues, as he doesn’t have a looming debt anymore.

Tips for student loan management

Canadian Student Loan Program estimates that repaying student loans takes the loaned about 10 years. Despite that, TD Canada trust has tips to help people get out of student debts faster.

The bank’s website informs people in such situations to realize how much they owe in loans and then create a budget. Also, try to direct any extra money toward your loan repayment.

Furthermore, one should try to curb expenses in all ways possible. One way is to settle in an affordable student residence.

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