More Dutch students taking out higher study loans

Student loan application
Student loan application Photo: karenr/DepositPhotos

Students in the Netherlands more often take out higher loans to fund their studies, Statistics Netherlands reported on Monday. This year the total amount of study debt in the country amounts to 19.3 billion euros, 1.9 billion euros more than last year. This year 1.4 million people have study debt to their name, 388 thousand more than early 2015.

In 2015 the student loan system replaced the basic study grant. Since then the number of students who borrow money increased, and the amounts they borrow rose faster than before. 

The younger generations of students tend to have higher study debts than the older ones. Students born in 2000, for example, have built up an average of 2.7 euros in student loans by the age of 18. For the generation of students born in 1994, that amount was an average of 1.5 thousand euros at age 18. Younger generations are also more likely to have a student loan. Of the students born in 2000, 34 thousand had student loans by age 18 - nearly three times as many as among students born in 1994. 

Study debts increased more strongly for students who landed fully under the student loan system, born from 1998 onwards, than for students who were still covered by the basic study grant. The average debt for students born in 1998 more than tripled within two years after the first student loan was taken out - from 2.5 thousand euros at age 18 to 8 thousand euros at age 20. Among students born in 1994, for comparison, average study debts increased from 1.5 thousand euros at age 18 to 4.1 thousand euros at age 20.