Tips on student loans for university tuition fees

How does the student loan for University tuition fees work?

For first-time students starting undergraduate courses at university in the autumn of 2012, up to £9,000 tuition fees per year can be charged to English students by your chosen university. Adding to this, a student loan to cover living costs, it is likely that by the end of a three year university course, the total student loan you owe will be somewhere between £35,000 and £50,000. Some students are eligible for means tested grants and bursaries to cover some of these costs, depending on their parents’ income and assets.

The money to cover university tuition fees and living costs is paid by the Student Loan Company. You, as the student, do not pay anything during your time at university and repayments do not begin until you start to work after graduation and are earning over £21,000 per year.

When do I have to start paying back my university student loan for tuition fees?

For students starting a university course of study from the autumn of 2012, their university can charge up to £9,000 a year in tuition fees.

In the April after the summer in which you graduate, you will have to start paying back the student loan if, and only if, your salary is in excess of £21,000 per year. If you start to work on a salary of £20,000 for example, you will not have to begin paying back your student loan.

For those who start work on a salary in excess of £21,000, or when your salary exceeds £21,000 after some time spent in employment, you will have to pay back 9% of the amount you are earning above £21,000 to begin to repay your student loan.

The money is paid back to the student loan Company monthly via the deductions that your employer will make from your salary via the payroll. For example, if you are earning a salary of £31,000 you have to pay back 9% of the £10,000 that you are earning in excess of £21,000. In other words, £900 per  year.

30 years after graduation all remaining student loan owing is cancelled regardless of how much or how little you have paid back during that 30 years.

Do English students have to pay tuition fees if they go to a University in Scotland?

Yes. At the current time, students living in Scotland attending university for an undergraduate degree do not have to pay tuition fees, but students who live in England, who choose to study at a university in Scotland, do have to pay tuition fees, in the same way that they would do if they were attending a university in England.