Martin Lewis’ five must-knows about student finance for new students in September

Martin Lewis has given a rundown of the most important points English university students need to know about student finance for 2024/25. Citing the changes made at the start of the 2023/24 academic year, the cost of going to university increased by over 50 per cent for many graduates.

In a blog post from March 22, Martin detailed information for new English resident first-time undergraduates. However, it’s important to remember that the blog is merely a summary, and for anyone looking for more information, take a look at the Student Loan Plan 5 guide on his site. Or visit Student Finance England.

However, Martin wants you to know what the changes for the forthcoming year will mean for you. He wrote: “Yet my aim isn’t to put you off going… I still believe if university is right for you, grab the opportunity. It can be life enhancing and often lead to increased earnings potential – but the fact the cost to you is more, means it’s worth a deep breath and a serious, practical look at whether it is right or not, or if there are other better options.”

Here’s Martin Lewis top five things everyone should know about English student finance.

The student loan price tag can be £60,000, but that’s not what you pay

Over a typical three-year course, the combined loan for tuition and maintenance can be over £60,000. Tuition fees, which are up to £9,250, are paid for you by the Student Loans company.

When it comes to repaying your student loan, these are the main points to remember:

  • You should only start repaying after you leave university (which for you is defined as April 2027 at the earliest).
  • You only repay if you earn over £25,000 a year. Earn less and you don’t pay anything back.
  • You repay nine per cent of everything earned above that amount (£25,000), so earn more and you repay more each month.
  • The loan is wiped after 40 years.
  • There’s no worry of debt collectors as it’s repaid via the payroll, in other words it’s taken off what you earn before you get the money, just like income tax is. It’s important to remember that the debt doesn’t go on your credit file.

There is an implied amount most parents are meant to contribute

If you are eligible for a loan to help with living expenses, known as the maintenance loan, the living loan is dependent on family residual income, which for most people is a proxy for ‘parental income’, Martin writes.

The amount of the loan received starts to be reduced from a family income of £25,000, upwards to around £65,000, where the loan is reduced by almost half. Other factors such as whether you’re living at home or away for university, and if you’re in London, also contribute.

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