Borrowing Formula


Tuition & Fees


Living Expenses


Other Resources


Financial Aid


Remainder Needed




Grad PLUS needed

(round to nearest whole dollar)

How Much Should You Borrow?

Your award notice lists your financial aid up to your cost of attendance, including maximum education loans available.  Can you reduce this amount?  Of course! You should always reduce your loans as much as possible.

  1. Review the direct costs for your program (those actually paid to EVMS) -- remember that mandatory fees are charged in the first term each year. 
  2. Add living expenses, including books and supplies -- create a budget; how much can you trim (needs vs. wants)?
  3. Deduct your other resources (not just financial aid) -- family support, savings, employer contribution?  Include those here.
  4. Deduct financial aid, most favorable first (aid disbursed equally by term)
     -  Grants or scholarships, if offered  [you must notify the Office of Financial Aid of all outside scholarships]
     -  Institutional loans, if offered and taken
     -  Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan (remember to allow for 1.051% origination fee) -  if this covers your needs, STOP - see #6
  5. Divide remainder by .95796 to inflate for the 4.204 percent origination fee on a Direct Grad PLUS loan.  You can take any amount up to the total listed on your award notice.
  6. Before the beginning of the academic year, you must use the active acceptance process in your award notice.  NEW for 2014-15, you will be able to use the online process to accept, reduce or decline aid prior to the beginning of the term.  In either year, to change your loan after the beginning of the term, you must use a loan change or increase form either of which is available  under Forms & Links on this site. 

If your calculation is greater than the Grad PLUS listed, you need to revisit your budget and trim expenses.  Your educational funds are to pay for: 

  • direct costs (tuition and fees)
  • basic room and board expenses for student
  • transportation expenses for student
  • books and supplies 

Education funds will not cover all your expenses, i.e., expenses for other members of your household, car loans, credit card payments, etc.  If you are still short of funds, explore guidelines for a budget increase or adjustment to your cost of attendance.  You may qualify for an increase for authorized expense, i.e., loan fees, dependent child care expenses while enrolled, etc.