The Student Room Group

Is not taking the maintenance loan silly?

I've an offer for LLB at Glasgow and insured Strathclyde so will be attending a uni close to home. As tuition is free I wasn't planning on taking any loans at all (I have a part time job and a small CTF) but all my friends and even my teachers are saying this is crazy and I should just take it anyway.

I don't really want to end up with any debt and feel i'll have enough money if I'm careful over the next 4 years so I don't really understand why everyone is saying that. I get it's only payable over X amount and over y amount of time and most people don't repay in full etc but if I can manage without it why would I take it - am I missing something?
Student finance "debt" isn't the same as other forms of debt.

It doesn't affect your credit score, it's written off 40 years after you take it out, you only ever make repayments when earning over the threshold and only repay proportionally to your income, and if you're a PAYE worker (i.e. the vast majority of roles) it just gets sorted out by your company's payroll/HR and it goes out automatically with NI contributions and income tax. You can read more about these factors and others here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/8-things-you-should-know-about-your-student-loan--2

They're also very low interest rates compared to other loans. Even if you aren't planning to use it, since it's very low interest you're still better off just taking it out and investing it. Bear in mind that some 10 years back there were a spate of news articles about how rich kids were still taking out the loans even if their parents were paying for everything, because the low interest rates meant they could invest it and make a profit.

Essentially there's really no reason not to take out the maximum maintenance loan you are entitled to unless you can't for religious reasons. You will essentially never have the opportunity to take out any kind of loan with as good terms again!
Reply 2
Original post by artful_lounger
Student finance "debt" isn't the same as other forms of debt.
It doesn't affect your credit score, it's written off 40 years after you take it out, you only ever make repayments when earning over the threshold and only repay proportionally to your income, and if you're a PAYE worker (i.e. the vast majority of roles) it just gets sorted out by your company's payroll/HR and it goes out automatically with NI contributions and income tax. You can read more about these factors and others here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/8-things-you-should-know-about-your-student-loan--2
They're also very low interest rates compared to other loans. Even if you aren't planning to use it, since it's very low interest you're still better off just taking it out and investing it. Bear in mind that some 10 years back there were a spate of news articles about how rich kids were still taking out the loans even if their parents were paying for everything, because the low interest rates meant they could invest it and make a profit.
Essentially there's really no reason not to take out the maximum maintenance loan you are entitled to unless you can't for religious reasons. You will essentially never have the opportunity to take out any kind of loan with as good terms again!

Ah yeah they were talking about that I think, people investing it. I have no religious reasons no, just more I've been brought up to work and save ig. Thanks for the link, I'll definitely have a read and then decide. Thanks again.
Original post by MollieMcKezie
I've an offer for LLB at Glasgow and insured Strathclyde so will be attending a uni close to home. As tuition is free I wasn't planning on taking any loans at all (I have a part time job and a small CTF) but all my friends and even my teachers are saying this is crazy and I should just take it anyway.
I don't really want to end up with any debt and feel i'll have enough money if I'm careful over the next 4 years so I don't really understand why everyone is saying that. I get it's only payable over X amount and over y amount of time and most people don't repay in full etc but if I can manage without it why would I take it - am I missing something?

Hi there,

You definitely don't have to take out a maintenance loan, especially if you are not planning on staying in accommodation etc you may not need it. I know alot of people who don't take out the maintenance loans because they are living at home etc and don't feel they need it. It is totally up to you!

I hope this helps,

Ellen
Y4 Medical Student
Uni of Sunderland
Reply 4
Original post by University of Sunderland Student Ambassador
Hi there,
You definitely don't have to take out a maintenance loan, especially if you are not planning on staying in accommodation etc you may not need it. I know alot of people who don't take out the maintenance loans because they are living at home etc and don't feel they need it. It is totally up to you!
I hope this helps,
Ellen
Y4 Medical Student
Uni of Sunderland

Thanks for the reply Ellen. I think after reading everything I've decided not to. My plan was always to try and leave uni with no debt and I think I'll stick with that. Thanks again
Original post by MollieMcKezie
I've an offer for LLB at Glasgow and insured Strathclyde so will be attending a uni close to home. As tuition is free I wasn't planning on taking any loans at all (I have a part time job and a small CTF) but all my friends and even my teachers are saying this is crazy and I should just take it anyway.
I don't really want to end up with any debt and feel i'll have enough money if I'm careful over the next 4 years so I don't really understand why everyone is saying that. I get it's only payable over X amount and over y amount of time and most people don't repay in full etc but if I can manage without it why would I take it - am I missing something?

Hey there 😀

First of all, many congratulations on your offers!

I completely understand where you are coming from, and I want to reassure you that you can manage without a maintenance loan not taking it is not silly at all. As an international student myself, I have been navigating university life for almost three years without relying on that loan or any other financial support. With just a part-time job, I have been able to maintain complete independence, including renting student accommodation.

Honestly, I have not felt like I have missed out on anything. I have managed to save money for my summer plans each year, enjoyed outings with friends, indulged in shopping for clothes and cosmetics, and even travelled throughout the academic year. In my experience, it is all about budgeting wisely, and you can definitely thrive without the maintenance loan.

I hope it was helpful 💪 Feel free to reach out if you have any questions 😉 You can also chat with me or other students directly through The Ambassador Platform.

Take care,

Julia
Psychology student
De Montfort University

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