Sometimes it’s easier not to think about your student finance. It’s great for getting you through university, but once you have to start paying it back you might be getting necessarily stressed. The best way to keep on top of it all is to learn how to manage it. The first step — learning how to check your current student loan balance.
Student finance helps thousands get through university without having to worry about tuition fees and student accommodation payments. However, once your graduate and earn enough, you have to start paying it back. Burying your head in the sand to avoid your money problems is never the best way to deal with it. Keeping on top of your money and learning how to manage your student loan means dealing with it stress-free.
Managing Your Student Finance
First things first, get organised. Dedicate an afternoon to sorting and managing your student loan so that you don’t worry about it going forward.
You’ll need to know what repayment plan you’re on and how much you owe. It might be a little alarming to see at first, especially knowing that you’ll pay interest, but facing it head-on is the smartest way to tackle it. You’ll already be able to see how much interest has already been added to your student loan.
Next, ensure your bank details are all up to date and set up a direct debit to start paying it off. When you start earning over approximately £2250 a month, you will automatically pay back a set sum each month. However, you can always start before you’re earning over the threshold, or pay back more at a time if you are able. You can always amend direct debits later down the line if your financial circumstances change. Plus, your automatic repayments will stop if your income dips below the threshold.
If you’re in a position to, you can make larger one-off payments towards your student loan. The quicker you pay it off, the less interest you’ll owe, so this is a great way to manage your student finance if you’re able to do so.
Keep up to date with correspondence. Don’t throw away letters or delete emails from student finance to avoid the issue. Read them thoroughly and then store them in a safe place. It’s a good idea to print off any emails so that you can keep them with physical letters in one dedicated folder.
Any employers will need to see proof of your repayment plan, so have a copy printed off and ready to show them.
How To Check Your Student Loan Balance
To check your student loan balance, head to GOV.UK and sign into your student finance account. Scroll to the bottom of the home page where a hyperlink will say ‘view or manage your repayments online.’
Click that and you’ll be redirected to a page with the button ‘start now.’ The website will then ask if you want to make a one-off payment or sign into your account; you’ll want to do the latter.
Once you’ve signed in, your balance will be the first thing at the top of the page. Don’t be alarmed by how much it is, remember it included tuition fees, maintenance loans and any interest already added.
At the bottom of the page, there will be information on how much of that sum is interest. That will include the interest rate currently being added to your student loan.
You’ll also be able to see any pending repayments if you earn over the threshold. Any repayments you’ve already made via direct debit or from your salary can also be viewed.
From this page, you’ll also be able to set up a direct debit, make a one-off payment or even pay all your student loan balance off in one go. We’re not sure how many people are able to do that last option.
Now you know how to manage your student loan, there’s no excuse for not keeping on top of your balance. Take charge by knowing as much as you can and organising it in a way that suits you.