7. NSFAS and study loans

University fees for 1st year student exceed R 20 000/year for diplomas and R30 000 for degrees...Please check on the Universities websites, as the tuition fee depends on each course.

 There are 3 options for learners from poor families: Nsfas loan ; bursaries/scholarships and study Loan


If your family has a very low income, you might get a NSFAS loan (National student financial aid scheme). Because of shortage of funding, in 2014, only first year students admitted at UJ with an APS score of 32 and above got a loan! Students from second year had to pass 80 % of their subjects to keep their loan 

 The NSFAS loan covers your tuition fees, books and accommodation on and off campus (see page : how to find accomodation) and food on  some campus (only from second year, at UJ).At UJ, you only pay R490 and do not have to pay for anything else, including registration.

Part of the loan may be converted to a bursary : 40 % if you pass all the courses for which you have registered, 30 % if you pass three quarters and 20 % if you pass half of them. The interest rate is low (rate of inflation + 2 %) and you only pay back the loan, when you start working. For your last year of study, your loan will convert the full cost of study and your living expenses. It will be converted in a full bursary  if you graduate. ).

 If you have received a partial bursary from a company or an organisation (for instance which covers only your student fee), you can use the Nsfas loan for the expenses you need to cover (e.g. –accommodation).

       You can apply online or download and print  the application from your University website and bring it  to the Finance office of the campus where you will study

You need to apply for Nsfas at each University where you want to study

Deadlines for NSFAS application :
- Wits and Univ. of Pretoria  : September 30, 2014
- UJ :  September 30, 2014
- TUT : July 31 (you apply for financial assistance in your application for admission)
- VAAL : January 30, 2015

UJ check for info on uj website, click on Finance (top), then Nsfas
-         application for 2015 -       
From December 15, you can check on UJ website if your NSFAS loan has been approved (click on Finance on the top, then click on Nsfas on the right, then click on list of approved students)

    Nsfas offices at UJ 
Aucklandpark Bunting Rd Campus: (011) 559 1250 / 1173 / 1193 / 1594
/ 1323
Aucklandpark Kingsway Campus: (011) 559 3768 / 3575 / 2965 / 3906
/ 4035 / 3642
Doornfontein Campus: (011) 559 6412 / 6063 / 6195
Soweto Campus: (011) 559 5507 / 5508

Bunting Road : A24 Red
Doornfontein : 185, Admin
Kingsway Auckland Park: E Ring 1
Soweto: Rooms

TUT - 
Apply NSFAS in your general application (there is a section on financial aid).

TUT will sent you a letter acknowledging my receipt of  NSFAS application funding

Once you are admitted , you will need to complete the online application before January 17 on  http://www.tut.ac.za/Students/financial

Check online your status :www.tut.ac.za/Students/financial/Pages/ApplicationStatus.aspx
More info on : 
-       NSFAS /www.tut.ac.za/Students/financial/opp/Pages/default.aspx
-       NSFAS contact http://local.tut.ac.za/Students/financial/Contacts/Pages/default.aspx


-       NSFAS  Application : close on 30 September 2014

-       Link for NSFAS :
-       http://www.wits.ac.za/prospective/financialaid/undergraduate/11608/nsfas_wits_financial_assistance.html
     General Information:
Mr Katlego Khoetha (IS)

Phone: 27 11 717 1070/87 
 27 11 717 1079

       University of Pretoria
NSFAS Application: from 1 August to 30 September


-       Closing date : 30 January

-       Link for Nsfas :http://www.vut.ac.za/index.php/admissions/financial-aid-a-bursaries/nsfas

Documents needed (certified copies – no fax copies)

 When you apply, you need a lot of documents : do not wait the last minutes to collect them

check the list online : 


You  need to make a certified copy of all the documents and many copies of each if they applied to 2 or 3 Varsitites. You need to apply for Nsfas loan to each Varsity ! 

- ID or birth certificates of parents and other persons (dependants) living with you.
- If parent employed : consecutive  payslips for one month (not older than 2 months) for each parent

- if parent employed as domestic : letter from employer with monthly salary and period of employmen
- If parent unemployed : proof of unemployment (affidavit signed by parent) and proof of what the family is living on (pension, disability grant, donation, etc.)
- If parents self-employed in informal sector: affidavit regarding the amount earned per month

 If parents  never married : affidavit  from the parent with whom you live.
- if parents divorced – copy of divorce decree
- If one or both your parents deceased : death certificates
- If  dependant studying in a Higher education institution : proof must be submitted
- If another adult (over 18) unemployed : affidavit and copy of the ID.
- If  your surname is not the same as your parents’: affidavit from a parent to explain why surnames differ








Contact : NSFAS  (www.nsfas.co.za) : 021 763 3232 - 0800 872 222  -info@nsfas.org.

If your Nsfas loan has been approved (UJ 2013 info)

-          -Pay R490 only and proceed with normal registration
-         - Schedule an appointment on the student portal to submit your Nsfas loan agreement form
-        -  Verify your details before your appointment – if they are incorrect, correct them on Nsfas page via student portal
-        -  Be in time on your appointment : if you are late, it will be cancelled and you will not get another one !
-        -  Bring 2 certified copy of ID + proof of  registration (all your subjects must be reflected on account + residence if you live on the campus) + pro forma invoice if you live in an approved off campus accommodation
-          -During your appointment, you will sign an pre agreement and loan agreement form
-          You will get a Edu-Xtra card, which will be loaded within 2-5 working days
-          Book – amount to spend before 30 Sept – what is not spent is send back to Nsfas

Will I get a Nsfas loan every year ?

You need to reapply every year  ;
At UJ, You must pass at least a 80% of your subjects 
If you fail, you can still reapply but you will not get Nsfas for more than 5 years, in total; 

If after your first year, you want to start again other studies,  you can reapply for Nsfas, as long as you have pass at least 80 % of your subjects.

more info :http://www.seben.za.net/money/nsfas-financial-aid

For which reason your loan can be declined (UJ) ?

As there is not enough government money to accommodate all the requests from learners, most of the Nsfas loans request in first year are declined at UJ because a of "low academic results" (APS less than 32)

Other reasons given are
-“inconsistent documentation or “incomplete postal application”
- expected family contribution higher than 1 R (if your family income is too high)
- no previous funding in the 3 latest years (for instance, a student who got a bursary for 3 years and apply for Nsfas will not get a loan)

If you are not happy, you can launch an appeal – ask for a form at Nsfas campus office before January 25 (2013)


-Apply as soon as possible (even if you are not sure if your application to study at the Varsity  is successful) to be sure to have all the requested documentation and to avoid long queues

-Do not send your application by post or internet : you will not know if some documents are missing or if the application is not complete

 Out of 28 learners admitted at UJ in 2014 :

-         17 applied for Nsfas and 13 received the loan. 4 Nsfas loans were declined, 3 because of a “shortage of funding” and 1 because of “academic results too low”
-         10 did not apply for Nsfas !

 “I was focusing on passing matric and applied late at Varsity. Lot of information was required to apply for Nsfas and gather all the information at once was a bit difficult for me, because I am the first person at home to apply at the tertiary level. I end up applying at Wits and UJ. I did apply for Nsfas at Wits because I really wanted to study there, but my APS score does not meet the required score. Because time was limited, I did not apply for Nsfas at UJ and now I regret it, as I was admitted at UJ”.
“I did not apply for NSFAS because I could not find my father's death certificate.”
 “I got the application form late and I couldn't find some of the things that were required”

"I got the application forms late for Nfsas and to apply requires lot of information and it was a bit difficult for me to gather all required information as this is my first and I am the first person in the family to apply in tertiary institution .And the most important thing is that I am not sure that I can get to uj all by myself"

“When I arrived at UJ campus on the last day, there were long queues and I did not manage to hand out my application before the office was close”

If you do not qualify for Nsfas loan, you can ask for a study loan:


If you have a parent, guardian or sponsor with a steady job and a monthly salary of more than 2000 R, you can ask for a student loan to pay for your tuition fees and even books and accommodation.

The loans are provident by banks, universities and other institutions. Your parent or sponsor acts as a “guarantor” for the loan. The money borrowed must only be paid back at the end of your studies.  But, from the start, your family/sponsor will have to pay each month an “interest” on the loan.

• A loan is usually repayable on completion of your studies.

• It’s often best to approach a bank where you (or a family member) already have an account.
The bank will know what your resources are and there may even be a savings account that can be used as security (proof of income) against your loan.

• Always ask what the monthly repayments (payments) are going to be and find out about interest
• Check the conditions of the loan very carefully. For instance, some loans stipulate (demand)
that if the student fails his/her exams at any stage, the full amount of the loan must be repaid immediately!

Edu loan:
 This company helps parents (employed by the government or companies which have signed an agreement with Edu loan) to spread the payment for tuition fees and study materials over 10 months. It offers also study loans to part time students, who are working during the day. The interest rate is better than for bank loans.

Edu loan:  0860555544 -
www.eduloan.co.za - SMS 'edu' to 32150

Our advice :

 -Do not take a bank loan if you/your family will not be able to pay it back !

- First approach a bank where your family has already an account. It is often easier to get a loan if your family has a saving account

- You can negotiate the interest rate…so it is important to compare options from various banks

- Check the conditions of the loan very carefully. For instance, some loans demand

that if the student fails his/her exams at any stage, the full amount of the loan must be

repaid immediately!

-Be suspicious of private organisations. Never agree to purchase an application form. Never offer

a bribe.

- Do not borrow too much. Try rather to find a sponsor for your studies through your parent’s employer.

- Try to find a part-time job or work full-time and attend evening classes. It is easier to get a loan !

more info on this website :http://www.seben.za.net/money/loans