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The availability of credit and financing for future professionals has grown considerably in recent years, to the point where they often find themselves heavily in debt at the beginning of their career, which can have a definite impact on their career decisions and choices.

How can you find your way through the credit jungle and, above all, what is Professionals’ Financial doing to defend the interests of its shareholders’ members and to offer them a solution tailored to a specific financing need?

Credit in all its forms

There are many different credit products on the market, the most popular of which are certainly credit cards and lines of credit. Subject to an assessment of your income and your lifestyle, these forms of credit are nevertheless easily accessible, and they are offered to future professionals as soon as they start university.

In addition, since their income at this stage is much lower and their expenses are very high, financing offers can be very attractive…

Understanding debt

The debt rate of medical students is currently four times higher than that of the average Quebecer of the same age, which in itself can be a heavy burden. And since their studies often stretch out over many years, dependence on a line of credit and a credit card tends to become chronic. How, then, can you manage this need for funds without mortgaging your future?

A new line of credit designed for students

In light of this situation, the Financial has joined with quality partners to respond to this particular need. Through National Bank, Professionals’ Financial will offer medical students and residents a line of credit, including life insurance (free for students) provided by Sogemec Assurances, beginning in late summer 2017. Designed specifically for them, this line of credit aims above all to simplify the management of their finances during their student years. The offer will eventually be available to other professions.

The primary goal of this line of credit is to ease the financial stress that high tuition, boarding and living expenses can cause, so students and residents can focus entirely on developing their knowledge and skills. Far from encouraging reckless spending, this student line of credit aims to lend financial support to our future professionals, whose years of training require diligence and determination.

Helping, guiding and encouraging responsability

When offering such a product to students and residents, it’s important to make them aware of its purpose and use. The FMSQ and our professional association shareholders have given us a key mandate to educate their members, so it’s essential that we inform these professionals, particularly those still in school and those starting their career, about the responsible use of credit. We must also educate them on the potential impact that excessive debt can have on their future and its consequences on their life projects.

With an awareness campaign, combined with personalized assistance from our advisors, we will be able to encourage these young professionals to develop good instincts in managing their finances. Our partnerships with many university student associations, and namely the FMRQ, enable us to better understand students’ reality and the challenges they face at this stage. We are committed not only to defending the interests of their members, but also to giving them the tools to build a bright future commensurate with their talents.

The next generation of professionals deserves our full attention. They will soon take their first steps in what hopefully will be an exciting career full of new challenges. Well supported and well informed, they will become active members of their profession and contribute to the advancement of our society with their expertise and their commitment. We want to participate in this journey and this success.

François Lavoie, B.A.A., B.A., Adm.A., F. Pl.
Senior Vice-President, Wealth Management

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