Cheat Sheet

Student Finance For Dummies Cheat Sheet

From Student Finance For Dummies - UK, UK Edition

By Phil Davis

The student finance system in the UK can be difficult to navigate. Check out helpful funding-related tips, pointers for tackling common problems that can arise with student finance, and a few words on where to turn to for advice if you can’t find the answer you’re searching for.

Applying for Student Finance

When you’re applying for student finance, the process can get confusing. Here is a handy list to help your application for student finance go smoothly:

  1. Bookmark Gov.UK’s Student Finance page to ensure you can readily access the online application form.

  2. Always apply early if you can. Make a note of when you need to apply for each source of funding (e.g., NHS Bursary, Social Work Bursary, or NCTL Bursary).

  3. Ensure you make an income-assessed application to maximise the funding available to you.

  4. Make sure anyone supporting your application provides all the information they need to.

  5. Remember to print out and return the Declaration Form after you have submitted your application.

  6. Allow 6-8 weeks after you have applied and then start checking your on-line student finance account.

  7. Ensure you respond to any requests for more information on your on-line account. If you do not hear anything after 8 weeks, contact your student finance agency.

  8. Check your student finance entitlement once it has been assessed to ensure you are receiving what you expected – if you suspect it is wrong, or wish to get it checked, contact the advice service at your course provider.

Converting Income for Budgeting Calculations

When drawing up a budget while you’re a student, ensure your figures all correspond to the same period of time. Your budgeting would be misleading if you end up comparing monthly expenditure figures with your weekly income. In order to get consistent, and accurate figures when creating your budget plan, use the following calculations to convert amounts so that they are comparable in real terms.

  • Converting a weekly amount to a monthly amount

    Weekly amount x 52 = Annual amount

    Annual amount x 12 = Monthly amount

  • Converting a monthly amount to a weekly amount

    Monthly amount x 12 = Annual amount

    Annual amount / 52 = Weekly amount

  • Converting a quarterly amount to a monthly amount

    Quarterly amount x 4 = Annual amount

    Annual amount / 12 = Monthly amount

  • Converting a quarterly amount to a weekly amount

    Quarterly amount x 4 = Annual amount

    Annual amount / 52 = Weekly amount

  • Converting an annual amount to a monthly amount

    Annual amount / by 12 = Monthly amount

  • Converting an annual amount to a weekly amount

    Annual amount / 52 = Weekly amount

How to Work Out Your Student Loan Repayments

No matter what your income is when you graduate, you can always work out how much your repayments will be to the Student Loans Company.

One simple formula applies, regardless of how much you earn. This is it:

(Your Income Before Tax – Repayment Threshold ) x 9% = Annual repayment

Annual repayment / 12 = Monthly Repayment

For all courses starting on or after 1st September 2012, the current Repayment Threshold is £21,000.

Note that how much you repay is always determined by how much you earn, not how much you owe.