Your loan: what to do with it?
Your bank account suddenly has an extra £3,000 in it. Your student loan has arrived, and it's time to work out the best way to handle it.
Your student loan is intended to help you to cover costs such as rent, food, transport and bills. Check out Directgov 1 to see how much you are eligible to borrow.
So now what? Should you spend it? Save it? Invest it? These students explain what they did with their loans.
'When your loan arrives, it's like someone has just given you money to do whatever you want with – but after rent, I only had about £150 left over each term, which quickly went on food and living expenses.
'My advice is to make a budget, especially in the first term when you're not used to paying your own bills.'
Carys Samuel – Public Relations, Leeds Metropolitan University
'I worked through my gap year, so I saved enough to cover rent and living costs at uni. I worked through my summer holiday, so I could invest my second-year loan. Across both years, I earned £250 in interest – not bad!'
Rafael Cohen – Physiology and Psychology graduate from Oxford
'Before uni I worked on a punt, carrying tourists up the river. I figured I could earn more if I ran the business. So I invested my loan in my own punting business.
'I bought a punt, paid for a commercial river licence and insurance. But I was soon earning more than enough to cover my living costs.'
Owen Sanderson – History, Cambridge University