Student finance if you started before 1 September 2012

The student finance you can apply for depends on:

  • your course and when it started
  • your income
  • if you’re from the UK or the EU

There are different rules for courses that started on or after 1 September 2012.

What you can apply for

Type of student Finance
UK full-time student Tuition Fee Loan, Maintenance Loan, Maintenance Grant
EU full-time student Tuition Fee Loan

You must be continuing a course in either of the following academic years:

  • 2020 to 2021
  • 2019 to 2020

There’s a different process if you’re a student from Scotland, Wales, or Northern Ireland. Contact the education authority if you live in the Channel Islands (Jersey and Guernsey) or Isle of Man.

How and when to apply

You can apply online if you’re a UK student.

EU students can download the application forms using the form finder.

You can apply up to 9 months after the first day of the month the academic year starts in.

The academic year starts on one of the following:

  • 1 September
  • 1 January
  • 1 April
  • 1 July

If you’re not sure when your academic year starts, ask your college or university.

Tuition Fee Loans

You can apply for a Tuition Fee Loan of up to £3,465 if you’re a full-time UK or EU student. The loan is paid directly to your university or college and you have to pay it back.

Maintenance Loan for living costs

You must be a full-time UK student.

You have to repay the loan. The loan depends on your household income (your parents’ or partner’s income plus yours) and where you live. It will be paid into your bank account at the start of term.

You cannot apply if you’re an EU student.

Maintenance Loan for the 2019 to 2020 academic year Maintenance Loan for the 2020 to 2021 academic year
Living at home Up to £4,474 Up to £4,604
Living away from home, outside London Up to £5,771 Up to £5,938
Living away from home, in London Up to £8,075 Up to £8,309
Studying abroad for a year, as part of a UK course Up to £6,869 Up to £7,068

Maintenance Grant for living costs

You must be a full-time UK student.

You do not have to repay the grant - the grant depends on your household income (your parents’ or partner’s income plus yours) and when you start your course.

The grant is paid into your bank account at the start of term.

You cannot apply if you’re an EU student.

Maintenance Grant for 2019 to 2020

Full-time student – household income 2019 to 2020 Maintenance Grant for the 2019 to 2020 academic year
£25,000 or less £3,391
£25,001 to £50,706 £50 to £3,390
Over £50,706 No grant

Maintenance Grant for 2020 to 2021

Full-time student – household income 2020 to 2021 Maintenance Grant for the 2020 to 2021 academic year
£25,000 or less £3,489
£25,001 to £50,777 £50 to £3,488
Over £50,778 No grant

Extra help

You might also be able to get:

Repaying your student loan

You have to start repaying tuition and maintenance loans when you earn over £18,935 a year. This amount changes every year.

Each month you’ll pay 9% of what you earn over that amount.

  1. Step 1 Check if you're eligible

  2. Step 2 Find out how much loan you could get

    Find out the maximum tuition fee and maintenance loan you could get if you're a:

    How much maintenance loan you get depends on where you'll study and your household income.

    1. Use the student finance calculator to estimate your maintenance loan

    You'll have to pay back any loan you get.

    1. Find out how much you'll repay
    2. Find out when you'll start repaying
  3. and Check if you can get extra help

  4. Step 3 Prepare your application

  5. Step 4 Apply

    1. Apply online

    You'll need to create a student finance account if you're a new student or sign into an existing account if you're a returning student.

    It can take up to 6 weeks to process your application. You might have to provide extra evidence.

  6. Step 5 Update your details if your circumstances change

    You must update your application if your circumstances change. For example if you:

    • change your course through clearing
    • change where you're going to live - for example with your parents instead of halls
    1. Find out how to update your application
  7. Step 6 Make sure you can be paid

    After you register at your university or college you'll usually get your maintenance loan paid directly into your bank account at the start of each term.

    Use your student finance account to:

    • update your bank details - for example if you open a student account
    • check how much you'll be paid
    • check when you'll be paid
    1. Sign in to your student finance account
  8. Step 7 Check what to do while you're studying

    You'll need to reapply for student finance for each year of your course.

    You must keep your details up to date throughout your course because some changes can affect your loan payments, for example if your household income or bank details change.

    1. Check how to update your details
    2. Find out what to do if you suspend or leave your course
  9. Step 8 Repay your loan