Money and Student Loans: Starting University Mini-Series, 1.1

Money, money, money: everyone’s nightmare.

Student loans are nothing short of a massive pain: the forms, attempting to find out what you are entitled, registering, whether the application is successful in both it’s completion, but also submission.

Hopefully this mini-blog will help you to know everything you need to do. 

Student loans are so incredibly useful. They will, if you’re lucky, fund all of your accommodation, and possibly even food. They pay your student fees, with a 0% interest rate on the loan. It is imperative, for the majority of students, to apply for a student loan to ensure you can attend university and to be financially secure.

For students starting this September (2017), the deadline has already passed, but for future students hopefully the following will be useful. If you haven’t applied yet, you still can but there is a possibility that your loan payments will be delayed. 

How to…

  • You apply for your student loan here: Student Finance England
  • You need to set up an online account and set up and complete an online application.
  • Make sure you have all the evidence you need to apply for more than the minimum, mainly any taxable income details.
  • You may need to prove your identity.
  • Sign and return the declaration form (comes in the post)

While this all may seem very simple and easy, it always isn’t. Your application maybe rejected, or you may have filled in something incorrectly. On other occasions you may need to send evidence proving the details you have submitted.

Furthermore, when you register there is a lot of processing to complete on the side of Student Finance. It may take a long time for your application to be approved, for example the declaration form you need to sign may take 6 weeks to arrive. Thus, there may be a limbo period in which you will be unsure whether you have fully completed the application form fully or correctly. Don’t stress about the wait, everything will be fine. If you do want to track your application, phone student finance. 

The application on the student loan for the university fees will not be fully completed until after results day once it has been confirmed what university you are attending. If you put in your first choice and you get in, this should be done automatically. If you don’t get in you will need to change the application form. 

A useful place to start out will always be the Student Finance websites and FAQs, or phoning Student Finance itself.

What happens if I need to change my application for the following years

If your parent(s) have received a significant drop in income over the academic year, you are entitled to receive more from the government. For those who only applied for the minimum amount, you will need to send in a application form, a PFF2 form and a CYI/Household income form, all of which can be found on the Student Loans website.

Do not take what I am saying as gospel; circumstances change and policies from different governments are altered. Search and phone etc. for what you need to do to increase, if applicable, the amount you are entitled. For information search student finance.

But if your parent(s) have received a significant drop of income, you are entitled to get more. It will pay more towards your accommodation fees, more towards your living budget, and lastly, if you can, more to save.

Key things to remember 

Remember you need to budget! Do not spend all your student loan at once. Budget and make sure you can pay your accommodation bills!

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