What is the student Maintenance Loan?
The maintenance loan is an additional loan offered to students by the government in addition to the tuition fee loan and is intended to cover your living costs while you are studying.
The maintenance loan is paid directly in to your bank account and is intended to help with costs such as rent, books, travel and your day to day living expenses.
Who is eligible for the maintenance loan?
The maintenance loan is offered to UK/EU students studying on a full time course. You may be able to get some help with living costs as a part time student depending on where you live while you study and how many hours a week your course is.
EU students who are eligible for the tuition fee loan are not automatically eligible for the maintenance loan but you may be able to apply for it if you have been living in the UK for 5 years or more.
Can you get a maintenance loan for part time study?
You may be eligible for a tuition fee and maintenance loan for part time study depending on the intensity of your course – how much of your course you complete each year. If it is 25% or more of the full time course each year then you might be able to get the loans. Check with your university if the course is eligible.
How much maintenance loan will I get?
The amount of maintenance loan you are entitled to depends on your (actually your parents’) household income, whether you are studying in London or not and where you are living while you study. It is really important to realise that this means the amount you get depends on how much your parents earn. The more they earn, the less loan you will get and this could be up to 50% less than these full amounts and you or your parents will be expected to make up the difference.
|Full time student||Academic year 2019/20||Academic year 2020/21|
|Living at home||Up to £7,529||Up to £7,747|
|Living away from home, outside London||Up to £8,944||Up to £9,203|
|Living away from home, in London||Up to £11,672||Up to £12,010|
|Year abroad as part of your course||Up to £10,242||Up to £10,539|
The figures above are what you would get each year and this amount is split in to 3 payments, each one paid directly in to your bank account at the beginning of each term. The amount you receive in the third term will be larger as it is intended to cover you over the summer holidays and in your final year it will be less, as once you graduate it will no longer apply.
How can I be assessed for a loan as an independent student?
There are certain criteria which will allow you to be assessed for a loan by Student Finance, independent of your parents.
- You are irreconcilably estranged from your parents
- You are over 25 years of age
- You have supported yourself financially for at least 36 months
- You are married or in a civil partnership, have a child or dependent
- You do not know where your parents are located
- You have been in local authority care
What does the maintenance loan cover?
The maintenance loan is intended to cover your living costs while you study. This includes rent, food, travel, entertainment and any course materials you might need. Most students find that the amount they get for their maintenance loan does not cover these costs.
What to do if your maintenance loan is not enough
The amount of maintenance loan you are given is based on your parental income, but this is based on the assumption that your parents can and will support your financially to top it up. For many parents and students this is not an option and so students find that they have a shortfall of funds.
How much interest is charged on the maintenance loan?
The way interest is charged on the maintenance loan is the same as the tuition fee loan. They are considered as one loan in terms of repayments. You can read about student loan repayments and calculate how much you are likely to pay back using our student loan calculator.