It’s sad to say, but my experience with my Caribbean student loan left a lot to be desired. From the time I took out my student loan, communication with my Caribbean lender was difficult. While attending school in Miami, Florida I had to send snail mail requests for disbursements, and had never received any account statements while I was in school.

I just accepted this as a Caribbean thing and put up with the inconveniences. Little did I know how this lack of communication would really negatively affect me.

On Groundation Grenada’s blog I share Why We Need Student Loan Answers in the Caribbean. I had a general understanding about how Caribbean student loans worked but  after 8 years of making payments:

 I would learn about other aspects of the agreement, of which I had no clue.

  • 9% interest is a hefty interest rate for a 5-figure debt.
  • A [$335 US] monthly payment sizable portion of my monthly earnings, especially when I had to service U.S. Student Loans too.
  • [0.00] dollars of my first two years of repayments would go to my student loan principal balance, which I only realized last year (2015).
  • 100’s of US dollars would have to be spent calling the Development Bank to keep track of my student loan payments.
  • There would times when I would not receive account statements; and that there was no easy way for overseas borrowers to access their account information.
  • Other borrowers have had the similar challenges.
  • That this experience would lead me to want to help others to understand their student loan and avoid challenges I had to face.

Read more on Groundation Grenada’s blog on here.

Do you have a student loan from a Caribbean bank? Share your experience in the comments!

-Melisa

3 Comments on We Need Student Loans Answers In The Caribbean

  1. Odd Cents
    January 1, 2017 at 1:27 AM (4 years ago)

    Banks in Barbados offer student loans, but people prefer to use the government’s student loan facility. I’ve not heard anything bad about the Government’s facility, but people abuse it. It’s preferred because you only start repaying when your studies are completed. With the bank, as soon as you get the loan, you have to start paying.

    Reply
    • Melisa Boutin
      January 1, 2017 at 3:36 PM (4 years ago)

      From what I could glean from my research online, Barbados does not seem to have the type of horror stories. I would love to learn more about Bajan student loan borrowers experience and what abuses are common, and compare and contrast to us in the OECS. Thanks for chiming in and Happy New Year to you!

      Reply

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