Can You Use Student Loans For Rent? Let’s Breakdown The Answer For YOU!

Worried about making rent this month? Too busy focusing on your career? How about we explore these options to help you!

Rent, your regular payment to your landlord for the ability to have a place you call home. It’s something that juniors and seniors in high school start to think about as they are about to enter the world of “adulting.” It can cause a lot of stress on young minds when looking into the many, many, options out there.

With rent prices climbing higher and higher every year, fluctuations in pricing depending on where you live in the country, and the already taxing element of having to pay for college, it’s…a lot. These overwhelming thoughts can lead to a great deal of stress on young students who shouldn’t have to worry when all they are trying to do is get an education.

So what’s the solution? Well the main topic for today is answering the question, can you use student loans for rent? The simple answer? Yes. However, there are very important details that need to be covered so you can maximize your understanding of how the process of using student loans for rent really works. We are here to look into this solution and help you find ways to breathe easier.

Today’s ‘Test-Free’ Lesson Will Cover:

  • Can you use student loans for rent?
  • How and who qualifies for these opportunities
  • Free tools and resources just for you!

person worried about student loans

Stress, stress, and more stress, trying to understand the world of ‘how rent works’ and ‘how can I pay for this and college?’ can be just that. So what can we do to fix that stress? Let’s find out…

Can You Use Student Loans For Rent?

Just like we said before, yes, you can use student loans for rent, yet just like stepping into the unknown world of student loans for the first time, the dos and don’ts of what you should do are important. Maximizing your loans and planning ahead for your future years at school with a right road map can allow for more time to worry less. First, let’s learn about COA.

  • What is COA?

  • COA aka cost of attendance is the amount it will wholly cost the student to go to school. Most universities will calculate the cost of attendance for the school year (fall to spring semesters). (Some schools may plan their COA differently depending on how long their specific education programs are). 

  • Why does the COA affect me?

  • Well the COA is the number that will tell you everything about the estimated price of your possible future school. The COA covers the estimated costs of: tuition, living expenses, supplies like textbooks, loan fees, and other varied expenses.

  • What does this have to do with using student loans for rent?

  • Once you get your estimated cost of attendance from your desired school, then you will know how much money in student loans you can acquire. You can’t go above that COA number when getting student loan payments. 

  • Can I use all of my student loan money for my rent?

  • No, what will happen after you are approved to receive student loans is the following:
  • The loans will be sent to your college and the college will use those loans to pay for tuition that year, fees, or other specified expenses from your school.
  • After that is done, any money left over will be given to you to use for other expenses you may have or in this case: rent!

  • TIP: It’s important to note that taking student loans can possibly cost you money in your future. Make sure you look into this important information before you take out a loan.

Now that we have a better understanding of the question: “can you use student loans for rent?” Let us jump into what you can do when it comes to student loans for rent!

college student working on his computer

The question was asked: can you use student loans for rent? The answer: yes you can. Now, how do you go about actually doing that? Well, we got you covered…

How And Who Qualifies For These Opportunities? 

Let’s answer the second part of the question first, who qualifies for getting student loans? Almost anyone, as long as you are eligible based on certain requirements.

You can find an in-depth list of those specific requirements here.

As for how you would get these opportunities to help you, well you can probably already sense what is going to be the main suggestion. That’s right…FAFSA.

FAFSA. Also known as the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. It’s the gateway to college funding. It’s the first step to take when wanting to receive financial aid. It requires you to fill out a form about your financial information and your parent’s (if you are a dependent). 

  • TIP: File your FAFSA early. The earlier you file the more money you could potentially receive. 

When you get your COA from your school and are starting to do the calculations of how much money will be coming from your pocket, it may feel like the room is getting smaller and smaller. Remember to take a deep breath and look at your options, get the knowledge you need so you can remember exactly what you need to do to help pay for your education. 

In your research you may learn about the potential money from FAFSA and how much it can save you, but there are limits to how much FAFSA gives out and you should consider how you can use minimum payouts from your student loans for your rent.

  • Consider the following:

  1. Living on campus or off? On campus will probably be a bit cheaper as you won’t have to worry about utility charges or if you have a meal plan, groceries. However there are some off campus pros, splitting the cost of rent between friends could help with money and having your own space is always a nice bonus.
  2. Location. More expensive states like California and New York will probably increase your student loan spending, so watch out for where you would like to go to college if you are trying to save.
  3. Look into other options too! There’s no shame in spreading out your resources. Take a moment to research more ways to save and other financial aid opportunities you might qualify for.

Actually…speaking of resources, how about we dive into that pool for a little bit and see what certain tools you can use to help!

college students walking through campus

It’s good to note that using these opportunities and outlining your college spending ASAP can help you save in the long run.

Free Tools And Resources Just For You!

It’s key to know that preparing is the best way you can help yourself limit future pressure. Obviously there is only so much you can do to prepare and finding the best help is just one step in the right direction.

  • First things first, make sure you fill out your FAFSA correctly, a thorough guide here can help you get started understanding the ins and outs of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid.
  • It’s not stated enough to make sure that you apply to as many scholarship and grant opportunities as you can. Grants are given based on financial aid and scholarships are merit based/awarded to those for specific achievements. 
  • You can find scholarships by doing searches on the internet through websites like this or you can call your school’s financial aid office and talk to them about finding scholarships opportunities. They are there to help you!
  • Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there for scholarships/grants. CollegeBoard has a tool just for these moments!
  • Talk to people you know, ask your friends who are also going to college for the first time on what they suggest, talk to the adults in your life who’ve been through the college experience before, or current college students who are also balancing their finances. 

Remember to take the moments that are given to you and know that you aren’t the only one out there. There are millions of other potential/current college students evaluating their expenses too, and figuring out the nuts and bolts of using student loans for rent can hopefully bring you some insight into just some of the processes it takes to do that. Do your research, know your options, and most importantly, do what’s right for you!

Shayla Burke
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