It's the end of the semester, and now all that’s left to do is wait for summer to begin so that we can start saving again. Lucky for us students, there's actually a way to put money back into our pockets before finding that summer job. Did you know that the government actually owes YOU money for going to school? (aww yeah!)
You can get a nice big chunk of cash from the Canadian government, ranging from $120 to $400 per (enrolled) month thanks to the tuition tax credits. So even if you studied part-time for a year, you might be able to get at least $900 - yes please!! And it doesn't stop there…
All you need to do is... your taxes.
If there's one thing we didn't learn in school, it's how to do our taxes. And it's especially important for students to know how to get that paperwork done, because we actually RECEIVE money from the government, instead of owing them a huge lump. So I teamed up with TurboTax to shine a light on just how much we can get at the end of our semester - right on time for the summer.
Tuition isn't so expensive after all...
Going to university costs a TON, especially if you're an out-of-province student in Montreal - I've been there, I feel ya. But all tuition fees paid for post-secondary education in Canada can qualify for a tax credit, a.k.a. you can get some of your money back!
Say you studied abroad last year? As long as you were a full-time university student, enrolled in a course of study leading to a degree, at a designated educational institution, you gooood!
And whether you already have a tax provider or not, we can all agree that the FREE option sounds pretty awesome at this time of year, amiright?! TurboTax offers just that. You can prepare, print, and file your tax return to the CRA and Revenu Québec for absolutely free. All you need to do is gather up your documents and fill in the info.
Claim, claim and claim some more!
Get this: students can claim way more than just tuition fees. If you qualify for the $400 education credit mentioned above, the government also offers you a $65 textbook credit for each one of those months. Part-time students who qualify for the $120 monthly education credit can also claim $20 for each month of part-time study.
And there are more deductions that you may not have heard about... such as public transit. That's right. If you take the bus and metro regularly throughout the academic year, you get to claim that too!
On top of being a student, if you've been employed in the past year (which you probably have!) and are 19 or over, you're eligible for the GST/HST credit, wherein you receive payments four times a year.
Just file a tax return and apply for the credit.
To make it even more interest-ing ;)
Nothing is more frustrating than paying interest on a loan, because in the long run, it seems like you're paying back double the amount that you've borrowed *angry face*! However, the more interest you pay on your student loan, the more you can claim on your tax return, so long as your loan is from Canada Student Loans, Canada Student Financial Assistance programs, or similar provincial or territorial programs for post-secondary education.
Wait... I have a scholarship... do I tell them?!
Not if you're eligible for the education amount. Income from a scholarship, fellowship, or bursary isn't taxable.
And what about all that paperwork...?!
TurboTax is an online service that helps thousands of Canadians each and every year to file their taxes quickly and effectively.
You can save yourself the time and money it takes to hire a professional, and do it your way thanks to their 100% free software for filing taxes. It can be used by anyone, no matter their age, level of income, or personal tax situation. So whatever your circumstances - whether you've changed jobs five times in a year, been freelancing, or are about to graduate - TurboTax has you covered.