5. Repayments

You must pay back Tuition Fee Loans and Maintenance Loans. You pay interest on these. You don’t have to pay back other student finance, eg grants and bursaries.

How much you pay back

If your course finishes before 2016, or you choose to leave before then, repayments won’t start until April 2016.

Your repayments are linked to your income. You only make repayments when your income is over £21,000 a year. If your income drops below this amount repayments stop.

Part-time students sometimes start repayments while they’re still studying.

Each month you pay back 9% of any income over £21,000.

Your income per year Monthly repayments
£21,000 and under No repayments
£25,000 £30
£30,000 £67
£40,000 £142
£50,000 £217
£60,000 £292

Use the repayments calculator to check how much you pay back.

Once you’re registered with Student Finance England you can check your balance online

If you leave the UK, repayments are based on the earnings threshold for the country where you live.

Interest on your student loans

If your course started before 1 September 2012 different rules apply.

You pay interest from the time your first payment is made until you pay your loan back in full.

For courses that started on or after 1 September 2012 the following interest rates apply:

Income Interest rate
While you’re studying Rate of inflation (Retail Price Index) plus 3%
£21,000 or less Rate of inflation
£21,000 to £41,000 Rate of inflation plus up to 3%
£41,000 and over Rate of inflation plus 3%

Making repayments

You can pay some or all of your loan at any time without an extra charge.

If you’re an employee your employer will work out your repayments and take them out of your salary with your tax.

If you’re self employed you must make repayments as part of your Self Assessment tax return.

If you leave your course early, you still have to repay your student loan.

If you go abroad for more than 3 months you need to fill in an overseas income assessment form. Student Finance England will then work out your repayments.

The Student Loans Company has detailed information on repayments.

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