Nigeria, a country with constant innovation and development, has yet experienced great development in the educational sector. With the provision of student loans to qualified Nigerian students in tertiary institutions and other vocational schools, Nigerian students can now access quality education without hassles.

With the commencement of the NELFund (Nigerian Education Loan Fund) for students in public tertiary institutions in Nigeria, there are certain things you should not be ignorant of.  Consider a few:


Who is Eligible to Apply for a Student Loan?


Some student loans in Nigeria come with eligibility status, such as economic status or financial background, especially for those loans given by the Federal Government.  But there are loan companies that provide students loans irrespective of economic status and residency, so long as you can meet repayment dates.

For example, to be eligible for the NELFund loan, you must:

 i. Be a student with Nigeria citizenship

ii. Have acquired admission to any approved public Nigerian university

iii. Have evidence of the need for a loan

iv. Have parents or guardians with an annual income of less than five hundred thousand naira (500,000,00)

v. Have not been caught with exam malpractice, drug or any other disciplinary offence.

vi. They must have a guarantor, who can be a civil servant of at least level 12, a lawyer with at least 10 years of experience, or a judge.

A good way to know you can opt for a student loan is to visit your student affairs department and make all the enquiries there.

However, there are loan companies such as Credlanche Group, Market Monie, Digitvant MFB, etc, which offer student loans without the hurdle of being residents of Nigeria or being admitted in a public tertiary school.


How Much Can I Get as a Student Loan?


For students seeking to get loans from loan companies and websites, it is pertinent to know how much you can get and your loan limits. For instance, the NELFund loan given by the Federal Government of Nigeria is limited to five hundred thousand naira (500,000.00) or depending on how much you are paying as tuition fee per semester.

However, the maximum amount is limited to two million naira (2000,000,00) over four years of study. This means that such a loan basically covers tuition fees and some textbooks.

But, for other financial institutions given loans, you can get a student loan above two million naira so long as you meet all the requirements for loan grant, repayment time and duration.


What Are the Channels for Application for a Student Loan?


To access student loans on the internet, go to the website of the loan company or site, follow the steps provided and apply.

For the NELFund loan, all eligible students can access the loan through an application made through the financial aid office of the respective educational institution.

Also, students need to provide proof of admission, personal identification, and financial need documentation. This application includes a detailed assessment of the student’s financial situation.


What Are the Interest Rates and Repayment Terms for Student Loans in Nigeria?


Most student loans are generally offered at a low-interest rate to ensure affordability and successful repayment. The repayment is sometimes structured to begin during or after graduation, with a grace period to allow graduates to secure employment first before repayment.

This repayment period may extend over several years to minimise the financial burden on graduates. Appropriately, 10 percent of the graduate’s monthly income is deducted as an interest for the loan collected.


When Will I Get the Student Loans after Applying for It?


You already know that student loans are given by some loan- savvy companies. So, for disbursement, say, the disbursement of the NELFund, the Ministry of Education or a related government agency are in charge of it.

These funds are disbursed directly to the educational institutions to cover tuition fees, reducing the risk of misuse. So, if you are one of the soft-life-gang,  and probably want to get some funds for fun, sorry but this one is not for you.


Dos and Don’ts When Getting a Student Loan


Having learnt about the loans and all it takes to get one, you should also know the Dos and Don’ts when it comes to student loans.

This may freak you out a little as a student who perhaps doesn’t know so much about loans but,  you should know anyway. Okay calm down, it’s not so serious, right!




The first and ultimate Do is to pay off interests on the loans collected during or after graduation, depending on the plans on interest repayment.  Don’t for once think to skip interest repayment as this may lead to accumulation of interest (otherwise known as compound interest) and once interest is accumulated, repayment becomes difficult.

Also, if you do not meet repayment time and period, getting another loan anywhere else may be such a hurdle, if not impossible, because of the past failure to pay off interest in the first.

Secondly, ask questions! If you’re looking at your financial aid statement and you’re unsure of what the loans are, feel free to ask. I mean, that’s why there’s a financial aid office open to students. 

Lastly, don’t forget to double check which loans are truly subsidised and which are unsubsidised. See if you can receive more subsidised loans so that you’ll have less interest adding up while you’re still in school. This may just be a matter of speaking with your financial aid clerk, or calling the loan officers in charge. 

Also, if you, by reason of circumstance, defer an academic year, it is very important that you notify your student affairs immediately so that they are aware and put a hold on your loan interest to avoid excess accumulation.




Some loans give you more money than what you owe in tuition. These are called refunds. Don’t take out loans that are in excess of your tuition. 

Try to meet other college costs by using your savings or setting up a payment plan or even get a small side hustle while in school to cater for other things so you don’t get so many loans. Keep in mind that loans that provide refunds can only cause temptation. 

If you do get a refund, don’t spend it on frivolities. The money is meant to be used for school tuition, supplies or books. When you receive that cheque, make a plan for it and don’t use it on personal things. 

Sure, you may think a new laptop is important for school, but is your other computer really that old? Definitely don’t use it to get the latest Iphone– the temptation of most students (to feel belonged)  or go on a shopping spree, because you’ll be paying interest on it for at least the next 20 years! 

Don’t assume that everything in your paperwork is what it should be. Make sure to read over all forms you receive and digest the meanings before embarking on any loan. Most promissory notes explain what you must pay back and when you must begin to pay it. Be sure that you agree to all terms before signing anything! 

Don’t take too much time off from school. If you choose to take a semester off, you’ll be fine, but if you take off more than that, banks will begin to send you bills for your loans. To them, you’ve given up on schooling and will not be returning. Let them know of your plans to see if they can set up a deferment for however long your sabbatical will be. 

In sum, loans are good when you really need the money but don’t get yourself entangled with so many loans because it could really hold you in the neck when repayment time draws near. For more educating reads on our website, log on to