Students in the new student loan system spend more on average than they did in the old system. This was the key conclusion of research conducted by Johanan de Bruin and Joliene Munier, two students in the Economics and Business pre-master’s programme.

Personal experience

De Bruin’s and Munier’s research looked at 29 EUR students in total. Of these, 12 were using the new student loan system, and 17 were using the old system. The researchers chose this subject because they ended up in the new student loan system themselves when they transferred from a university of applied sciences to a pre-master’s programme.

More income and expenditures

In the new student loan system the basic grant was discontinued and replaced by a loan, which forms the primary source of income. According to the researchers, this gives students easier access to a higher amount each month. While students residing with their parents still received 1,233 euro per year with the basic grant, the student loan system allows them to borrow up to a maximum of 11,760 euro per year.

The researchers concluded that in the long term, this could lead to financial difficulties. In spite of a decrease in student expenditures on education, their debts have increased by approximately 6,000 euro in total under the new system. Students in the new student loan system mainly spend relatively more on living expenses (such as rent, electricity and internet).

Awareness is the solution

According to the researchers this problem is chiefly the result of ‘the mentality of these students’. By providing the students with better information regarding the temptation to borrow large amounts of money and the associated risks, they will be more aware of the pitfalls and keep their expenditures within reasonable limits.