The first option for most Malaysians thinking about taking a study loan is the PTPN loan (National Higher Education Fund). It is a study loan funded by the Malaysian government, and has a low interest rate of 1% p.a. (p.a. stands for per annum, which is Latin for per year).Basically, an interest rate of 1% p.a. means that if you borrow RM10,000, then you will owe the lender the original RM10,000 plus RM100 (per year) as an interest payment. If you take 3 years to repay the loan, you will have to pay RM10, 300. In terms of interest rates, the PTPN loan is the best option. However,if you are above the age of 45 (the age limit to secure a PTPN loan) or do not meet the stringent requirements of the PTPN loan, then your next best option is to get a loan from one of the banks in Malaysia.
Before we delve into the various study loans available in Malaysia, here are some important things to know about interest rates.There are two main types of interest rates: flat rate interest and compounded interest. Flat rate interest means that the same amount of interest will accrue each year. Some loans may charge compound interest (meaning that, if you do not pay off the interest payable per annum at the end of each year, a greater amount of interest will accrue the following year).
Another thing you should know about before taking a loan is the BLR (Base Lending Rate). BLR is a minimum interest rate calculated by financial institutions based on a certain formula. This formula takes into account the institutions cost of funds and other administrative costs. The BLR is adjusted by banks, but the rate actually is determined by Bank Negara Malaysia. The BLR for the year 2014 in Malaysia is approximately 6.85%, but every bank may offer a different package.
Now that we know the basics of taking a loan, let’s move on to the numerous types of study loans available.In Malaysia, study loans are usually funded by government bodies, financial institutions such as banks, orprivate corporations and organisations. Loans are also offered by some universities and colleges, but usually in partnership with a bank. Typically, a study loan covers a student’s tuition fees, cost of books and living expenses.
There’s an ocean of information out there on study loans, and it can be tough fishing them out. This article is going to save you the trouble of going deep sea fishing! Here’s the catch of the year.
Bank Study Loans
Study loans offered by banks may be the only option for those of us who have passed the age limit restrictions that government loans or scholarships prescribe to. It is important to note thatstudy loans are not offered by all banks. However, most banks provide personal loans which can be used to fund education.
The repayment period for most banks loans is about 10 to 15 years depending on the bank’s terms and conditions. Take note that most banks require a guarantor in order to be eligible for the loan.Listed below are some of the specific study loans offered by banks in Malaysia.
Bank Rakyat Study Loan
Bank Rakyat is the biggest Islamic cooperative bank in Malaysia. The study loan offered by Bank Rakyat is called Education Financing-I Falah, and it finances up to RM200,000 for a maximum loan period of 15 years. However, under special circumstances that are subject to collateral value such as landed property and Bank Rakyat’s Investment Certificates, unlimited financing can be provided.
The type of interest rate offered by this loan is a flat rate. You will pay an interest rate of 7.6% p.a. (if you are able to repay the loan within 5-10 years). The interest rate increases to 8.1% p.a. (if you require 10-15 years to repay the loan).
The Bank Rakyat study loan finances education locally and abroad. In order to be eligible to apply for this loan, you have to be a Malaysian aged 18 and above, but not exceeding 65 years of age. Applicants are also required to have a fixed income. However, if you are a student, and do not have any income, you may apply through your parents, spouse, siblings or legal guardians.
|Pros and Cons of the Bank Rakyat Study Loan|
|Bigger loan compared to PTPN (maximum RM200,000)||Higher interest rate compared to PTPN|
|Funding NOT limited to Malaysian educational institutions only|
OCBC Bank Study Loan
OCBC offers a study loan called the Secured Study Loan that finances up to 50% of the value of a secured property, for a minimum loan of RM10,000 and a maximum loan of RM400,00 which is to be repaid withina period of 10 years. The main condition here however is that only OCBC housing loan customers are eligible to apply for it.
The type of interest offered by the OCBC study loan is variable rates. The loan offers an interest rate of BLR +0% (currently 6.6% p.a.) with no lock-in period. For example, if you want to borrow RM10,000 at a fix BLR of 6.6% and you plan to repay the loan over a 2 year period, you would have to repay RM11,320.
27 different local universities are covered by OCBC’s study loan. Please check the OCBC website for more information.
|Pros and Cons of the OCBC Study Loan|
|Offers a large loan amount (maximum RM400,000), which depends on 50% of your property’s market value||You are only eligible for the study loan if you are a housing loan customer|
|No age limit|
RHB Bank Study Loan
The RHB Study Loan funds full-time and part-time courses approved by the Ministry of Education and JabatanPerkhidmatanAwam for both local and overseas education. The loan covers course fees, related expenses and insurance premium. There are 2 loan packages available, the minimum coverage is RM20,000 and maximum is up to RM500,000.
|Pros and Cons of the RHB Study Loan|
|Offers a large loan amount (maximum RM500,000).|
CIMB Bank Study Loan
This loan is suitable for full-time or part-time students who want to study locally or overseas. It is important to take note that the course must be recognized by the Malaysian government.The loan covers a minimum amount of RM10,000 and a maximum of RM100,000 for a loan period of 10 years.
The terms and conditions of the CIMB study loan vary for full-time students and part-time students. For full-time students, only joint borrowers are eligible for this loan. This means that there has to be one co-borrower to support the student (who should be 18 years old and above). Acceptable co-borrowers are parents, siblings, relatives or guardians with sufficient repayment aptitude.
For part-time students, the student (18 years old and above) must provide one guarantor. Acceptable guarantors are parents, siblings, relatives or guardians with adequate repayment ability.
|Pros and Cons of the CIMB Study Loan|
|Offers a small loan amount of RM100,000 (maximum)||Joint borrowers are required for full-time students|
UOB Study Loan (or U Education Loan)
|The UOB study loan offers interest rates from as low as 0.75% + BLR for secured loans. Thisstudy loan offers a minimum loan amount of RM15,000 and a maximum loan amount of RM150,000. The repayment scheme is flexible – the minimum loan period is 3 years, and the maximum loan period is 10 years (can be up to 12 years depending on the course).The UOB study loan is available for both undergraduate and postgraduate students, however, the terms and conditions differ. For undergraduates to be eligible for this loan, they must be a U Club member, and a Malaysian aged between 18 to 25 years old. Undergraduates should be full-time students at an accredited educational institution, and have a co-borrower aged 55 years and below, and an income of RM36,000 (minimum) per year. The maximum amount of co-borrowers allowed is two.
So that was the catch of the year in terms of the best bank study loans in Malaysia. If you’re still interested in fishing for more study loans, check out the article on ‘Government Loans in Malaysia.’