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alberno

Financing your law degree

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Hi,
I have been shopping around for a professional LOC and wanted to share my experiences. I had a chance to talk to Scotia and TD. My Scotia experience was utterly positive - quick, responsive, great terms. After filling a single page form with absolutely minimal requirements, I was approved for 100K at prime + .5 with the condition to pay off and close all my other credit products. Reasonable. So nothing but high marks for Scotia -  a humane lender.

My experience with TD was not only dissatisfying but also somewhat humiliating. I have been a TD client for 12 years, so thought they might show a faint interest in my business. I met with a rep at the Eagleson branch in Kanata who basically said:

  1. Their professional student line is mostly designed for doctors and dentists. There is a low chance to be approved for a Law program (reading between the lines - less prestigious). To them, I am like any other undergrad student with no income. 
  2. The best rate they offer to those fortunate mere mortals to be approved is prime + 1.
  3. Interest and repayment start immediately.
  4. They do require cosigners in all cases.

The rep was candid and said I should take the Scotia offer as there was no way they would even try to beat it. He also said during his time there he only approved a couple of law students at the max of 72K. Bingo!

I said that I would have to close all my TD credit accounts if I go with Scotia, and the rep basically shrugged that off and said it shouldn't be a problem. Reading between the lines, they don't give a hoot about my business after having me as a client for a decade. 
Cannot wait to be done with TD for good!

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Seems that Scotia unequivocally has the best LOC terms.

I'd be concerned about the affect that closing all of your other credit would have on your credit score, but then again it's not likely that a law student will borrow money again for some time.

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Seems to me like he was a reasonable human being who was limited in his actions and respected you (and agreed with you) to take the better option at another bank? What's the problem?

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1 hour ago, alberno said:

Hi,
I have been shopping around for a professional LOC and wanted to share my experiences. I had a chance to talk to Scotia and TD. My Scotia experience was utterly positive - quick, responsive, great terms. After filling a single page form with absolutely minimal requirements, I was approved for 100K at prime + .5 with the condition to pay off and close all my other credit products. Reasonable. So nothing but high marks for Scotia -  a humane lender.

My experience with TD was not only dissatisfying but also somewhat humiliating. I have been a TD client for 12 years, so thought they might show a faint interest in my business. I met with a rep at the Eagleson branch in Kanata who basically said:

  1. Their professional student line is mostly designed for doctors and dentists. There is a low chance to be approved for a Law program (reading between the lines - less prestigious). To them, I am like any other undergrad student with no income. 
  2. The best rate they offer to those fortunate mere mortals to be approved is prime + 1.
  3. Interest and repayment start immediately.
  4. They do require cosigners in all cases.

The rep was candid and said I should take the Scotia offer as there was no way they would even try to beat it. He also said during his time there he only approved a couple of law students at the max of 72K. Bingo!

I said that I would have to close all my TD credit accounts if I go with Scotia, and the rep basically shrugged that off and said it shouldn't be a problem. Reading between the lines, they don't give a hoot about my business after having me as a client for a decade. 
Cannot wait to be done with TD for good!

I had same experiences with RBC vs. Scotiabank when I was shopping for a loan, and later re-financed the loan to reduce the interest rate.

I'd been a client of RBC since I first got a banking account (when I was like 13 or something) but the rep just did not have authorization to offer anything better. It was nothing personal, they just weren't interesting in doing business with me on those terms.

I think BNS has been aggressively targeting this market (which, I think, is technically the small business market to them - they look at lawyers, even ones that are employees in firm or in-house, as "small businesses" which gives us favourable treatment.) I suspect it will pay off for BNS, 

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16 minutes ago, FingersCr0ssed said:

Seems to me like he was a reasonable human being who was limited in his actions and respected you (and agreed with you) to take the better option at another bank? What's the problem?

Serious, the problem? Where do you want me to start?

1) Don't advertise you intend to serve a clientele if you truly don't. Wasted my time.

2) How about interest in your client's success? They have made thousands of dollars of me.

3) Making your clients feel unvalued and unwanted against all tenets of good business?

4) Only interested in you if you make a load of money in medical or dental? Is a bit of social responsibility too much to ask from a business? This country lags in innovation for decades now and helping build an educated workforce through supporting students seems to be something a major institution should be interested in, not just reaping the fruits of their success when they graduate and find lucrative jobs. 

Anyhow, it's a values question. Indeed he was candid, albeit too much. Maybe I expect too much from a bank, but seeing such a contrast for an identical product between two banks is slightly disheartening. 

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This is a really good thread. I was debating which bank I would go with, like yourself, I have been a TD client. Do you suggest I do not even bother going to TD, or could my circumstances be different for some reason? 

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2 minutes ago, Marwaho said:

This is a really good thread. I was debating which bank I would go with, like yourself, I have been a TD client. Do you suggest I do not even bother going to TD, or could my circumstances be different for some reason? 

I believe this is a systemic issue, but some might disagree. From what I have seen so far, a lot can depend on the rep, though there is only so much flexibility they have with the bank policy. Give it a shot and post here :) In my situation, the rep did not even do a credit check before he gave me the answer. All he asked was which school I was going to. Would the answer be different if it was UofT or Osgoode, I don't know. 

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Prime + 0.5? You cannot do better then that. So, congratulations for that.

Continue with the discussion, I do believe it is the TD reps that is bad. I have a few encounters with them, some of them are truly helpful and others are just piles of s**t.

Look at it this way... The TD reps apparently is not very smart as law school students are one of the group of clients that any financial institutions would love to bring in. 

He has totally failed to understand that as a business person, and I am pretty sure he will be stuck working at that branch for a very long time.

On the other hand, the Scotia smart reps will definitely go somewhere better. You will likely not seeing him/her anymore at the branch in a few years.

That is how things work. So, do not take it personal. I think you are all good.

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2 hours ago, alberno said:

Hi,
I have been shopping around for a professional LOC and wanted to share my experiences. I had a chance to talk to Scotia and TD. My Scotia experience was utterly positive - quick, responsive, great terms. After filling a single page form with absolutely minimal requirements, I was approved for 100K at prime + .5 with the condition to pay off and close all my other credit products. Reasonable. So nothing but high marks for Scotia -  a humane lender.

My experience with TD was not only dissatisfying but also somewhat humiliating. I have been a TD client for 12 years, so thought they might show a faint interest in my business. I met with a rep at the Eagleson branch in Kanata who basically said:

  1. Their professional student line is mostly designed for doctors and dentists. There is a low chance to be approved for a Law program (reading between the lines - less prestigious). To them, I am like any other undergrad student with no income. 
  2. The best rate they offer to those fortunate mere mortals to be approved is prime + 1.
  3. Interest and repayment start immediately.
  4. They do require cosigners in all cases.

The rep was candid and said I should take the Scotia offer as there was no way they would even try to beat it. He also said during his time there he only approved a couple of law students at the max of 72K. Bingo!

I said that I would have to close all my TD credit accounts if I go with Scotia, and the rep basically shrugged that off and said it shouldn't be a problem. Reading between the lines, they don't give a hoot about my business after having me as a client for a decade. 
Cannot wait to be done with TD for good!

Hi.  I too had approached TD but had received different info.  Here is a link that may help you as you will see that law degrees are financed up to $100K for 3 years.  I further was informed that the interest is prime which is currently 2.7%; unlike Scotia at prime + 0.5%.  

The difference is that for TD you will have to start paying at least interest upon borrowing the funds.

https://www.tdcanadatrust.com/products-services/borrowing/loans-lines-of-credit/student-line.jsp

I think you should speak to someone else at TD and point them to their link.  

Really hope this helps.

 

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14 minutes ago, april23jules said:

Hi.  I too had approached TD but had received different info.  Here is a link that may help you as you will see that law degrees are financed up to $100K for 3 years.  I further was informed that the interest is prime which is currently 2.7%; unlike Scotia at prime + 0.5%.  

The difference is that for TD you will have to start paying at least interest upon borrowing the funds.

https://www.tdcanadatrust.com/products-services/borrowing/loans-lines-of-credit/student-line.jsp

I think you should speak to someone else at TD and point them to their link.  

Really hope this helps.

 

 

Lol, they will even throw in a Enjoy your UE BOOM2® Wireless Bluetooth Speaker! Law schools it the time to party! How about something more humble like a tablet :)

Yes, it appears we had two completely different experiences. All he knew about me was that I am a TD client, going to UofO law. That's all it took him to give me the response. He obviously misinformed me about the rate as the only way to judge this is through credit history and the level of debt - he didn't even check mine. 

I suspect there is a lot of subjectivity and bias involved in these decisions which is troubling in and of itself. 

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1 minute ago, alberno said:

Lol, they will even throw in a Enjoy your UE BOOM2® Wireless Bluetooth Speaker! Law schools it the time to party! How about something more humble like a tablet

Yes, it appears we had two completely different experiences. All he knew about me was that I am a TD client, going to UofO law. That's all it took him to give me the response. He obviously misinformed me about the rate as the only way to judge this is through credit history and the level of debt - he didn't even check mine. 

I suspect there is a lot of subjectivity and bias involved in these decisions which is troubling in and of itself. 

Perhaps but as you mentioned that you were told "...There is a low chance to be approved for a Law program..." this information is incorrect. As TD's website clearly states it a a recognised program.  The personnel at TD most definitely should be educated and cease from providing incorrect information.

I wish you the best in both funding and in law school. Cheers!

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Why is it, exactly, that you had to close your accounts at TD, in order to take out a LOC at BNS? Is this just something peculiar to your own situation, or is it customary? Why is it an issue? I have a chequing account at CIBC, as well as some longer term investments that I don't believe I would be able to close, so I am wondering what would happen if I wanted to get out a LOC at Scotia bank for law school.

Edited by bgates275

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25 minutes ago, bgates275 said:

Why is it, exactly, that you had to close your accounts at TD, in order to take out a LOC at BNS? Is this just something peculiar to your own situation, or is it customary? Why is it an issue? I have a chequing account at CIBC, as well as some longer term investments that I don't believe I would be able to close, so I am wondering what would happen if I wanted to get out a LOC at Scotia bank for law school.

 
 
 

Hi, they (Scotia) want you to pay off and close all your revolving credit facilities (LOCs, credit cards) no matter which institution. I have these with TD and Tengerine and they asked me to close both. They don't care much about non-credit accounts (checking accounts). I guess it is their risk management technique. For investment accounts, not sure if they consider margin trading accounts. Those could be a huge credit risk. 

Also, I don't think they factor in gov student loans as to them this is not revolving credit.

Edited by alberno

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52 minutes ago, alberno said:

Hi, they (Scotia) want you to pay off and close all your revolving credit facilities (LOCs, credit cards) no matter which institution. I have these with TD and Tengerine and they asked me to close both. They don't care much about non-credit accounts (checking accounts). I guess it is their risk management technique. For investment accounts, not sure if they consider margin trading accounts. Those could be a huge credit risk. 

Also, I don't think they factor in gov student loans as to them this is not revolving credit.

I have a credit card as well, but what concerns me most is my RDSP (Registered Disability Savings Plan). I've invested money into specific mutual funds with this RDSP, and the government has matched my investments with grants and bonds. I'm wondering if I'd have to close that, and if so if I'd have to pay back the grants and bonds. It's no small amount of money either. 

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There's one other thing. Are you eligible at all for OSAP? Have you heard of the recent changes? 

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43 minutes ago, bgates275 said:

There's one other thing. Are you eligible at all for OSAP? Have you heard of the recent changes? 

Yes, I did apply for OSAP but still in the approval process. LOC is my plan B to cover what OSAP won't. Apparently, OSAP is getting better and better. Feel fortunate to have access to this service. 

Regarding any LOC specifics, your best bet is to talk to the bank directly. As far as I understand, they are only concerned with revolving credit. 

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Was looking as well, noticed that for med and dentistry school the interest rate is just prime. Wondering if anyone has negotiated or tried to negotiate their interest rates to prime instead of prime + .5%?

Edited by pandafluff

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Scotia wanted me to close my non-Scotia credit cards back when I was applying for a PSLOC. I said no. They just deducted my credit card limit from the credit limit of the LOC. At least a few years ago that point was definitely negotiable.

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That was also an option when I applied, although I ended up going with BMO, and they didn't require me to close anything. They also only did up to $80,000 at the time though. Turned out that was plenty though, and now I have 20% less debt, so woohoo.

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I actually had a positive experience at TD, was discussing with them and Meridian.  The TD option had lower interest and let me set my own LOC limit up to 100k, Meridian wanted to restrict me to like 10k a year or something along those lines.

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