The Student Services and Amenities Fee (SSAF) pays for important student services and amenities such as health and welfare services. SA-HELP loans are only available to students required to pay the SSAF.
The SA-HELP loan is a deferred payment option, which means you don't repay it until your income rises above the minimum repayment threshold.
If you’re a local or online undergraduate, postgraduate, UniLink or Open Universities Australia (OUA) student, you must pay the SSAF in each teaching period of your course.
SA-HELP loans are available to all eligible students.
If you’re a vocational education (formerly TAFE) or international student, you don't have to pay the SSAF, so are not eligible for SA-HELP loans.
The SSAF is calculated for each teaching period based on your individual course load, up to a maximum of $308. Because the SSAF is based on your course load, it is payable after the relevant census date, when your enrolment for that period is registered.
How do SA-HELP loans work?
Through SA-HELP, the Australian Government pays the SSAF on your behalf.
You will start paying this loan back through the tax system when your taxable income is higher than the minimum repayment threshold.
The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) calculates your compulsory repayment for the year and includes this on your income tax notice of assessment. On top of the compulsory repayments, you can make additional voluntary repayments to the ATO.
You must supply your Tax File Number (TFN) when you apply for an SA-HELP loan. If you fail to supply your TFN, your enrolment will be cancelled.
The outstanding balance of your SA-HELP loan will increase each year with the Consumer Price Index (CPI).
In each teaching period, you can:
- pay nothing upfront and incur deferred SA-HELP debt
- pay your full SSAF upfront to Swinburne each teaching period and accrue no SA-HELP debt for this teaching period.
You can pay by logging in to My Financials. View your Statement of Account to check the amount and choose your preferred payment method.