Here's your guide to managing money at university!
Sources of Finance at University
When you arrive at university you will probably already have in place your student loan from student finance. The loan usually covers your fess (tuition fee loan), and some living expenses (maintenance loan). More information on student finance can be found on the student finance website (link at the bottom of this page).
Most students will require a top up to their student loan and there are many different sources of finance to help with this, including:
- Disabled students' allowance, dependents grants, childcare grants and parents learning allowance
These grants are available via student finance and are paid to students in certain situations, such as having dependent children or being registered with a disability. More information can be found here:
- Scholarships and bursaries
Many universities offer scholarships and bursaries to their students, and it is worth checking with your university what is on offer. This could be a general bursary, one based on grades or a sports scholarship.
There are also bursaries available for certain professional degrees such as Nursing and Teaching (these change regularly, so it is always worth checking for current rates).
Many students top up their student finance by working part-time around their studies. Lot's of universities have flexible student ambassador jobs available, where you can work alongside studying.
Check out your universities careers team as they usually advertise part time work for students, as well as graduate roles.
- University hardship funds
All universities have in place a facility to help students in financial need and most offer a 'hardship fund'.
During the last few years, universities have made payments to students who need additional technical equipment such as laptops or headphones to enable remote working.
It is always worth checking out what is on offer from your university and whether you may be entitled to additional help.
When you move away to university it is likely to be the first time you have to manage your own money and budget to ensure you student loan lasts. Did you know your student loan payments are usually paid in 3 instalments? Once when you start university, another around January and the 3rd usually in April.
This makes it really important to budget well to ensure you loan lasts until the next instalment.
Here are 5 tips to help with budgeting:
- Open 2 bank accounts. Have your student loan paid into 1 and set up a weekly or monthly direct debit to a 'spending' account to ensure your loan payments last until the next instalment
- Shop around for student bank accounts. Lots of banks offer incentives to students which can help save money and budgeting. For example, you may be offered a young persons rail card or gadget insurance
- Consider shopping in low price supermarkets such as Aldi and Lidl, your budget will go further
- Plan your meals and stick to a shopping list. This will help you stick to a budget when you are out shopping
- Cook from scratch, it's always cheaper and take it in turns to cook a meal with flat mates
Check out these university 'go to' meals from other students:
Finally, don't forget your university's website will also have a Money or Financial advice area to help you (sometimes it's called the Student Funding Service).