This month students will be returning or taking up places at their new university. In either case, managing student finances can be tough. Here are our top tips for managing student finances.
Student Finance Tips
Whilst investing in the future is certainly exciting, it is also a lot to think about and plan for. Between tuition fees, accommodation, study materials, meals and travel, university expenses can quickly add up. Universities in the UK can typically charge up to £9,250 in tuition fees, so remember to do your research. The cost of living whilst at university will be dependent on location. Most universities will offer helpful advice in the area of planning, so check what information is available and contact the university or students union for guidance.
Student Finance Loan
All UK students are entitled to full tuition-fee loans from student finance, however maintenance loans are means tested based on household income, place of study, and length of tuition. The government provides this calculator to help you work out what students are eligible for. Generally, a student will be entitled to less maintenance loan support, the wealthier their household is deemed to be. However factors like cost of living for students studying in London for example, will be taken into consideration. Student loan debt is not taken into consideration within an individual’s credit score, so it does not affect credit rating. Those who take out a student maintenance loan are only expected to repay a percentage of what they earn over a certain threshold and any outstanding debt is automatically cleared after 30 years, under current legislation. So there is plenty of protection. This makes applying for a student finance loan a good option for students and parents alike, especially if there is any uncertainty that a student will become a high earner after graduation. Visit repaying your student loan for further details.
Seek Alternative Student Finance
Student finance is the main source of funding for students, however there are many specialist bursaries and scholarships available as well. Unlike loans, these types of funding most often do not need to be paid back. Scholarships are often awarded for young people who display academic excellence with strong A-Level results, and for those who display exceptional ability in music or sports for example. Some charities offer bursaries and grants to students who need support with specific personal circumstances. Some students might benefit from student finance from the industry they plan to work in after graduation, typically with a few conditions attached, but it’s well worth making use of all the funding available.
Make a Realistic Budget
Providing young people with some financial education is hugely valuable for them. Moving away to university may be the first time a young person has managed their own household spending. They could definitely benefit from a little support and guidance here. Parents can take their child food shopping, and ask them to practise a few simple recipes at home, get them to pay their own phone bill for a while, all to help build a picture of how much things cost. It’s important to be realistic about student finance. It’s a great idea for parents to help their children work out a realistic budget. Perhaps by offering an incentive like offering up the support for one area, not covered by student finance. Like a small weekly allowance for healthy meals for example. Or whatever seems reasonable. We provide a few other tips about teaching children financial education in our blog How to Teach Kids About Credit.
Don’t be Daunted
As mentioned, student finance does not affect an individual’s credit rating, so no amount of student finance will prevent you from accessing financial products in the future. Graduates will never be asked to repay more than they can afford. Most graduates don’t even notice the student loan coming out of their PAYE salary each month. Most universities have allocated funding for student hardship and mental health support, so if finance does become overly challenging, the university will want to help where possible. If students plan to work part-time, prepare a CV and start looking for job opportunities. There may be remote working jobs that can be done online around studying. Find a dedicated student bank account – if planning to make use of a student overdraft, make a plan for repaying it in good time. Platforms like Splitwise, Monzo and Yolt allow students to manage bills and see exactly what they’re spending on to help avoid overspending.
At Prestige Business Management we can help
Prestige Business Management wishes the best of luck to students of all ages for your studies and future career. Call us today on 0203 773 2927.