A VET Student Loan (hereafter VSL) is a loan from the Australian Government. It allows eligible applicants to pay their tuition fees. The loan is repaid through the Australian tax system once the student reaches the minimum income threshold for repayment. The minimum income threshold for repayment is set by the Australian Government each year, and is published on the website “Study Assist.” Repayments continue until the student has repaid the debt.
Important points —
1. A VET Student Loan is not “free money” to study it is a loan from the Australian Government
2. Approved applicants must repay the money borrowed through the Australian taxation system
3. Repayments commence once the applicant reaches a minimum income threshold
4. VSL will remain a personal debt until repaid and as such, this may reduce take-home (i.e. after tax) income and borrowing capacity
5. Applicants are advised to seek independent financial advice before applying
The amount an applicant may borrow for tuition fees is determined by the Australian Government. There is a specified loan cap for each course, in addition to an overall individual cap.
Lastly, VSL only applies to tuition fees. They do not cover additional costs that may be required such as —
1. Text books
3. Accommodation and/or living expenses
4. Internet access