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Has anybody applied for OSAP (2020-2021) yet?


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Applications opened up this June, and one of the first questions you are asked is "Are you taking all of your courses online, through correspondence or distance education?". 

As far as I know, most (if not all?) med schools right now have yet to make a concrete decision on whether the fall semester will be fully online or not. Would it be best to hold off on submitting this application for the time being, or should I just respond with "No" and then worry about any decisions later on? 

 

Thanks

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1 minute ago, medhopeful1 said:

Hey guys, this might be a rlly dumb question, but what's the benefit in applying for an OSAP loan as opposed to solely using a LOC to pay for school?

OSAP gets you grants/buraries (i.e. money you don't have to pay back), and typically for in-school grants/bursaries, you have to be apart of the provincial/federal student loan program.

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10 minutes ago, medhopeful1 said:

Hey guys, this might be a rlly dumb question, but what's the benefit in applying for an OSAP loan as opposed to solely using a LOC to pay for school?

so for OSAP you get a mix of loan and grant, depending on your/your family's incomes. As well for OSAP, interests don't accrue at all while you're in full-time studies, whereas for LOC interests would accrue and compound the whole time you're in school. So OSAP is just a way to offload some debt to a less costly account than the LOC.

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32 minutes ago, DrOtter said:

so for OSAP you get a mix of loan and grant, depending on your/your family's incomes. As well for OSAP, interests don't accrue at all while you're in full-time studies, whereas for LOC interests would accrue and compound the whole time you're in school. So OSAP is just a way to offload some debt to a less costly account than the LOC.

So essentially I could get a loan for which interest wouldn't accumulate until finishing med, then use my LOC to pay off that OSAP loan after school is done - thereby preventing interest accumulation on my LOC if using solely that to pay for school?

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41 minutes ago, medhopeful1 said:

So essentially I could get a loan for which interest wouldn't accumulate until finishing med, then use my LOC to pay off that OSAP loan after school is done - thereby preventing interest accumulation on my LOC if using solely that to pay for school?

I'm not a financial expert but I've been told that it is not recommended to pay off OSAP using your LOC. You get a 6 month grace period after you finish school for the federal portions of the loans (meaning no interest!) and you just have interest accruing on the provincial portions of loans (federal and provincial governments give you loans but recently, the 6 month grace period for provincial loans were removed). Even then, the interest for OSAP is supposedly lower than LOC (correct me if I'm wrong). So if you are paying down OSAP debts using LOC, you'd just be accruing way more debt. Generally, LOC should be your last resort. I've been told that once you graduate, you'll be in residency and making some $. Ideally, you should be using your earnings to pay down debt and NEVER taking out loans with higher interest rates to pay down debt of lower interest rates. 

Like others have said, OSAP gives you grants that don't need to be paid back and schools will often make grants/bursaries available to you ONLY if you have applied to OSAP (to demonstrate financial need and that you have exhausted available and reasonable means to get $$$). Typically OSAP should help you cover a lot of the costs already so that you don't have to take out as much on the LOC, helping you reduce interest and debt in the long run. 

I believe you'd have to be an Ontario resident to be eligible for OSAP. You can read more about it here: https://www.ontario.ca/page/learn-about-osap.

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1 hour ago, medhopeful1 said:

Do you mind clarifying what the student loan program is?

You only have to use the OSAP application. The federal + provincial decides how much of loan and grant you get. There have been news too about how OSAP might increase this year due to COVID so defs apply for it if you're eligible.

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4 minutes ago, DrOtter said:

You only have to use the OSAP application. The federal + provincial decides how much of loan and grant you get. There have been news too about how OSAP might increase this year due to COVID so defs apply for it if you're eligible.

So by applying to OSAP via their application, I will automatically be considered for school specific bursaries?

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46 minutes ago, TheHappyMD said:

I'm not a financial expert but I've been told that it is not recommended to pay off OSAP using your LOC. You get a 6 month grace period after you finish school for the federal portions of the loans (meaning no interest!) and you just have interest accruing on the provincial portions of loans (federal and provincial governments give you loans but recently, the 6 month grace period for provincial loans were removed). Even then, the interest for OSAP is supposedly lower than LOC (correct me if I'm wrong). So if you are paying down OSAP debts using LOC, you'd just be accruing way more debt. Generally, LOC should be your last resort. I've been told that once you graduate, you'll be in residency and making some $. Ideally, you should be using your earnings to pay down debt and NEVER taking out loans with higher interest rates to pay down debt of lower interest rates. 

Like others have said, OSAP gives you grants that don't need to be paid back and schools will often make grants/bursaries available to you ONLY if you have applied to OSAP (to demonstrate financial need and that you have exhausted available and reasonable means to get $$$). Typically OSAP should help you cover a lot of the costs already so that you don't have to take out as much on the LOC, helping you reduce interest and debt in the long run. 

I believe you'd have to be an Ontario resident to be eligible for OSAP. You can read more about it here: https://www.ontario.ca/page/learn-about-osap.

Thanks for your info! Based on my research, LOC interest rates are actually lower than OSAP. LOC at most banks is prime - 0.25%, whereas for OSAP the Ontario portion of the loans have an interest rate of prime + 1% and federal at prime + 0%. Just thought to throw that out there in case anyone else looks into this thread!

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5 minutes ago, medhopeful1 said:

Thanks for your info! Based on my research, LOC interest rates are actually lower than OSAP. LOC at most banks is prime - 0.25%, whereas for OSAP the Ontario portion of the loans have an interest rate of prime + 1% and federal at prime + 0%. Just thought to throw that out there in case anyone else looks into this thread!

Oh wow. I didn't know that. But yeah if the situation remains the same by the time I start residency I will definitely consider paying off OSAP with the LOC. 

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7 minutes ago, DrOtter said:

Oh wow. I didn't know that. But yeah if the situation remains the same by the time I start residency I will definitely consider paying off OSAP with the LOC. 

You don't pay off OSAP while you're in school though.  So maximize your OSAP while in school, and when you graduate, consolidate your OSAP onto your LOC.  But not until you graduate.

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5 hours ago, medhopeful1 said:

Thanks for your info! Based on my research, LOC interest rates are actually lower than OSAP. LOC at most banks is prime - 0.25%, whereas for OSAP the Ontario portion of the loans have an interest rate of prime + 1% and federal at prime + 0%. Just thought to throw that out there in case anyone else looks into this thread!

Haha, my bad! I asked my friend about it and he reminded me that you shouldn't be paying OSAP debts from undergrad with a LOC when you first start medical school. What others have said about consolidating your OSAP loans into your LOC when you're done school and need to repay makes sense given the LOC interest < OSAP interest. 

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