What is a Student Loan
The loan accrues interest from the day it is paid. The good part is that the interest rate is linked to the inflation in line with the Retail Prices Index, which means you only really repay the amount you borrow with no profit made on the loan itself.
Do I qualify?
You qualify to take out a student loan if you are a part-time Initial Teacher Training student and are in full-time higher education.
If you are an existing student you will be able to take out either a Student Loan for Maintenance or a Student Loan for Fees.
On top of that, there are some other types of financial help you may be entitled to.
What's Student Loan for Maintenance?
The Student Loan for Maintenance is designed to help you with your living costs during term times and holidays.
The amount of money you can have will depend on a few factors like your household income, whether you live at home while you are studying and whether or not you receive any Maintenance Grant and how much.
The amount of Student Loan for Maintenance you can borrow will not be affected by the Special Support Grant, if you receive any.
You will normally get a smaller loan in your final year at University, as there is no holiday period to cover you for and you will only need until the end of the final term.
You can apply for the non income assessed Student Loan and get around 75 per cent of the maintenance money regardless of your household income.
Whether or not you can apply for the rest of it will depend on your household income ('income assessed loan').
As a rule The Student Loan for Maintenance is paid in three installments directly into your back account at the start of each term.
The Student Loan for Fees is paid straight to your university or college by Student Finance Direct.
They are due starting from April after your course is finished (at the start of the new financial year).
You are expected to repay 9% of your earnings over £15,000pa or the monthly/weekly equivalents.
For example, if you are earning £18,000 a year you will have to pay back nine per cent of £3,000, which works out at approximately £5.19 a week.
And so, the more you earn, the faster you will repay the loan. You can repay more than this if you decide to.
Outstanding loans will be written off when you reach 65.