French Guiana - Guidance To Apply Student Loan
Designed to help students pay for university/college tuition, books, and living expenses, student loan differs from other types of loans with its interest rate substantially lower and repayment of the loan may be deferred while the student is still in school.
There are banks in French Guiana that offers loans that can help pay for the cost of college/university education and living expenses during the course of study.
Following is a guide on how students can apply for a loan or seek financial aid in French Guiana.
Student loans are usually offered to full-time students. Borrowers who already have an existing account with the bank has a better chance of securing a student loan.
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Student loans - Banks:
- Repayment: Monthly installments may be deducted by the bank directly from your chequing account.
- Guarantee: Some banks may ask you to secure your loan with guarantee in the following forms:
- A actual deposit is required if the borrower earns no income.
- Insurance - covers the borrower and the surety in the event of death, disability or illness.
Things you should know before applying for a loan:
Before you apply for a loan, carefully take note of the interest rate, conditions, and repayment scheme that the bank is offering. Look into several banks and do some research regarding the banks application process. It may be helpful if you can ask your university/college if they offer any loans to students or if they have partnered with any banks that offers student financing.
One thing that you also need to consider in choosing where to apply for a student loan is the bank's customer service, since student loans are usually long term, it will make transactions easier and can save you from a lot of stress in the future if your bank has good and accommodating bank representatives or loan officers.
Tip: You may not need to accept the entire loan amount the bank is offering you. Since you will be paying back the loan sometime in the future, it will be more ideal if you will only borrow what you need.
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Student loans - Banks:
- Gather all the required documents: Banks will usually evaluate the applicant's character, capacity to repay the loan and ability to comply with the banks' condition. The documents you will be presenting will aid the bank in making a decision whether to grant or deny your loan request. Make sure that you can present and submit all the required documents that the bank is asking for. Some banks may ask you to submit additional documents aside from the ones listed on the 'Required documents' section, it will be better if you can get in touch with the bank by phone or check the bank's website first before going to the bank. Ask the bank representative/loan officer if he/she can give you a checklist of required documents and direct you to the nearest branch of the bank in your area.
- Knowing more about the student loan being offered by the bank: Some banks have a loan calculator available online through their website. Interested applicants may enter the amount they would like to borrow and for how many months would they like to pay for it. After entering the required information and clicking on submit, the site will show a page containing information like, how much is the monthly installment and the applicable interest rate.
- Starting your application:
- Most loan applications are done in person, with the borrower going to the bank, filling in an application form and submitting the completed form along with all other required documents. Note: Before you go to the bank check you will have to set up an appointment first.
- It might also be helpful if you can check the bank's website again and see if you can start your loan application online. Some banks have a preliminary application form available online which the borrower must fill in and submit. After reviewing the application, a lending officer will contact you to discuss your application.
- Loan Agreement: Once your application is approved, the bank will ask you/the borrower to sign the loan agreement. Note: Read the loan agreement carefully before you sign, take note of the interest rate, grace period, when you will start repaying the loan and any penalties in case of default.
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Some documents that banks may ask loan applicants to produce:
- Signed application form
- Valid identification
- Proof that the student is enrolled in a university/college
Note: Documents listed above are just some of the requirements that a bank may ask you to submit, it may vary per bank or some banks may ask you to produce additional documents. Get in touch with the bank by phone or check the bank's website first before going to their office to apply for a loan.
Some banks do not charge a fee to process a student loan application.
Repayment period for most student loans starts after course completion, also there are banks that gives the borrowers a few months to find gainful employment before they start making loan repayments.
Just to give you an idea, there are banks that offers student loans with repayment period of 5 years (no grace period), there banks that offers loans that can be repaid in 9 years and payment can be delayed for 12 to 48 months.
Repayment period may vary per bank.
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