Borrowing Formula


Tuition & Fees


Living Expenses


Other Resources


Financial Aid (allowing for 1.073% origination fee on Direct Unsub Loan)


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 (except PA fees are always charged in January). 
  2. Add living expenses, including books and supplies -- create a monthly 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 in your calculation.
  4. Deduct financial aid, most favorable first (remember all aid is disbursed equally by number of terms in the academic year)
     -  Grants or scholarships, if offered  [you are required by federal regulation to notify EVMS Financial Aid of all outside scholarships]
     -  Institutional loans, if offered and accepted
     -  Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loan (remember to allow for 1.073% origination fee for loans after October 1, 2014) -  if this covers your needs, STOP - see #6
  5. Divide remainder by .95708 to inflate for the 4.292 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 visit your EVMS Online Financial Aid System to accept, reduce or decline aid prior to the beginning of the term.  After your initial online action, to change your loan you must use a loan decrease 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's educational purposes
  • 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., computer purchase, dependent child care expenses while enrolled, etc. 

TRY this worksheet, How Much To Borrow, for assistance or email for assistance.