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Does my student loan pay for my accommodation?

Student loans are a common part of student life, with as many as 56% of students taking loans to fund their studies in England alone. According to the House of Commons Library, around £20 billion is loaned to students every year.

The main reason students take loans in the UK is actually for accommodation - they need their 'accommodation and maintenance' loans, as student loans are actually called, to fund housing, bills, and living expenses such as food and commuting. As such, your student loan is very much set up for paying for your accommodation and more.

According to university admissions service UCAS, how much you're entitled to claim depends on two factors: How much your parents make for a living, and whether or not you're living in London (where costs of living are higher than elsewhere in the country). You can apply on the website and have to start paying your loan back in the April of the year after you finish your course, but only once you start earning at least £25,725 per year. If you never make that amount of money, your loan is automatically written off after 30 years, meaning you then no longer have to pay it back. In all other instances, your student loan will accrue interest just like any other loan would, although it will be lower than regular commercial loans.

So is it a good idea to take a loan? Of course, not needing one is better and will cause you less financial stress in later life, but sometimes it's a 'needs must' scenario rather than a question of whether you should or shouldn't. Some careful budgeting ahead of time can help, as can finding accommodation that doesn't break the bank. With that in mind, you can start paying back your student loan early by setting aside savings from the start and avoid that dreaded interest dragging on for years after you finish your studies.

Below are a few points on what student loans cover, as well as how to make staying in Liverpool `affordable with what you have to live on.

What costs do student loans cover?

According to online platform eStudentLoan, your accommodation and maintenance loan may cover no more than the actual cost of attendance. However, this covers a number of things: tuition, accommodation, student fees for any on-campus services, books, supplies, any additional equipment, and even such extras as daily commute and childcare for parents attending university. Student loans are effectively there for you to have money for essentials so you can complete your studies with peace of mind.

In other words: Student loans cover just about anything you need for your studies, including your living space, food, and any and all equipment. However, how you use the funds given to you is ultimately up to you, and if you're able to live well within your means you'll likely have less to pay back at the end of your student career than if you spent your loans to the maximum.

In an ideal scenario with regards to requiring student loans, you'll find accommodation that is affordable enough to allow for plenty of room in your budget for other items, such as equipment and on-campus services. The idea here is that you don't need to worry so much about making ends meet at the end of each month, but rather have enough capacity to fully focus on your studies. After all, attending university should be about learning and obtaining the skills to find your dream career following graduation.

TJT Students Liverpool student accommodation starts at a mere £63 rent per week for our Derby Buildings rooms, with slightly higher priced rentals available at Lime Court and Camden Street. With the average student accommodation in Liverpool costing upwards of £70 per week, according to the University of Liverpool, you'll be able to save money from your student loan and put it to better use by, for example, funding additional tools and study materials instead.

Is Liverpool affordable for students?

Liverpool is incredibly affordable for students, especially when compared with other larger cities such as London or even Manchester. The cost of living, according to this helpful write-up by the University of Liverpool ranges from approximately £410 to £1,092 per month, which includes everything from accommodation, study costs, bills, commuter travel, food, and even leisure activities and entertainment. According to the London School of Economics, by comparison, London students expect to spend on average £1,200-1,300 per month on all of their expenses.

Arguably, one of the most stressful things to budget for as a student can be household bills. This is where accommodation such as that offered by TJT Students becomes invaluable, as we provide an all-inclusive approach to your accommodation costs. Included with your rent, you'll find all utility bills, free WiFi internet, on-site laundry facilities, and even CCTV coverage to keep you safe and secure in your home away from home.

Leisure and entertainment costs for students staying in Liverpool are also low at an estimated £30 to £100 per month. London students, by comparison, should expect to pay a minimum of £88 per month, which includes going out and eating out/takeaways.

In other words, Liverpool is an incredibly affordable city with plenty of options for students. If you choose to cook your own meals, for example, you'll find that your food and grocery budget goes a long way in Liverpool. Meanwhile, the right kind of accommodation - one close to your chosen university - will save you a great deal on commuting costs. Lastly, choosing accommodation that includes all of your bill payments in one complete rental package means less hassle and a more affordable approach. TJT Students accommodation shines here, as you'll find you need less time to spend on your budget, will have an affordable all-round rental package, and reduced commuting will preserve more of your valuable study - and free - time.

How much do Liverpool students need to live on?

As we noted above, Liverpool students will need about £410 to £1,092 to cover all of their monthly expenses. Discounting the average cost of accommodation, this range falls to £110 to £552 per month. With accommodation at our Derby Buildings, you'll be able to further lower your cost to £362, nearly £50 cheaper than the lowest estimate outlined by the University of Liverpool.

Having all-inclusive accommodation when it comes to bills and other essentials such as laundry facilities also means good news for students; these additional costs can often set you back without you even thinking about them. All of our TJT Students properties offer all-inclusive accommodation with regards to your utility bills, WiFi internet, and laundry facilities, meaning you can already discount these items from your monthly budgeting. This only leaves travel, food, your mobile phone and study costs (such as books and other equipment), and any additional entertainment or gym costs you may wish to add on. As travel costs can easily be kept low with a student travel pass, and food and grocery bills will depend entirely on how much you eat out, this means a substantial saving on your bills. TJT Students accommodation starts at a mere £63 per week. You do the maths; the savings could be enormous!

Liverpool is renowned for being one of the most cost-effective cities in the UK to live in as a student, with statistics showing that its nearby rival Manchester costs nearly 24% more when it comes to living expenses. There are plenty of free activities for students as well, including art galleries, museums, parks, and visiting Liverpool's Chinatown. This culturally diverse city is known for being truly diverse and is home to many different cultures. It has a rich history, especially when it comes to music (think Beatles) and shipbuilding (the Titanic was registered here!) You'll find lots of affordable ways to have fun in Liverpool, while quickly making friends from a diverse range of cultures both from across the UK and the world.

With the right kind of budget, Liverpool students really don't need all that much to live on, at least when compared with other larger UK cities. Another advantage of living in Liverpool is the excellent transportation links: London is only 3.5 hours away, Edinburgh 4.5 hours, and Manchester is under an hour away. This is particularly good news for international students wishing to get cheap plane tickets from one of the larger cities, as these are so easily accessible. Liverpool is also an excellent choice if you're looking to explore the wider UK as it's fairly central and offers lots of affordable transport links to both the larger and smaller locations.

If you are looking to study in Liverpool, consider locating within one of TJT Students student properties in the heart of Liverpool city centre. Easy access to your university or school, affordable accommodation with fully included bills and WiFi internet, and proximity to both leisure activities and shops make TJT Students accommodation the ideal choice. Best of all, TJT Students accommodation offers you all of the above at a fraction of the price of other student properties, and even includes added safety measures including CCTV to make you feel extra secure in your home away from home.

Whichever accommodation you choose to go for, being wise when it comes to budgeting is important, especially if you will be making use of a student loan. If you have any questions about accommodation options and pricing, why not contact our friendly team today? We'll be more than happy to help answer your queries and get you set up with a comfortable, safe, and best of all, affordable living space to start your student career.

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