Do we pay back NSFAS money

Yes, the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) is a South African government initiative that provides financial assistance to eligible students to help them cover the costs of their tertiary education.

While NSFAS provides funding to students, this funding is typically in the form of a loan, which means that in most cases, recipients are required to repay the money they receive from NSFAS.

However, there are certain conditions under which the NSFAS loan can be converted into a bursary, meaning that it does not need to be repaid.

These conditions usually involve meeting specific academic criteria or working in certain fields after completing your studies. The conversion from a loan to a bursary is intended to incentivize students to perform well academically and to contribute to critical sectors of the economy.

Whether you have to pay back NSFAS money depends on when you received the funding.

  • Students who received funding before 2018: These students received a loan from NSFAS, which they are required to repay once they graduate and start earning a salary of R30,000 or more per year.
  • Students who received funding after 2018: These students received a bursary from NSFAS, which they do not have to repay.

If you are unsure whether you have to pay back your NSFAS money, you can contact NSFAS for clarification.

Additional information about NSFAS loans and bursaries:

  • NSFAS loans: NSFAS loans are repayable loans that are given to students who are unable to afford the cost of their studies. The loans are interest-free for the first 5 years after graduation. After 5 years, the interest rate is 6% per annum.
  • NSFAS bursaries: NSFAS bursaries are non-repayable grants that are given to students who are academically deserving and financially needy. Bursaries do not have to be repaid.