Student Advice Service – Money Matters

News from the Student Advice Service at the University of Brighton

The countdown to graduation has started – here is all your essential money advice for life after uni

What happens to my student bank account?

If you have a student account (with 0% overdraft interest rate) then unfortunately sooner or later you’ll find that the 0% interest rate disappears once you graduate.

Whilst some student bank accounts will transfer into graduate accounts automatically after you finish uni others don’t – which could see you paying some hefty charges.

You can avoid this by choosing a graduate bank account and start paying off your student overdraft at your own pace – potentially without any charges.

Have a look at the MoneySavingExpert guide to graduate bank accounts for some useful suggestions.

Will I have to pay Council Tax?

Indeed you will! If you have been studying full time, you will no longer benefit from the student Council Tax exemption from the official last day of term (7 June 2019 for most courses) and not your graduation date or the end of your current tenancy, as is a common misconception. You may therefore become liable for Council Tax immediately after this date. This will apply to you even if you plan to start full-time postgraduate study in September 2019 – you may well be charged Council Tax during this time between courses.

Find out more about Council Tax liability from the university website.

It is possible to apply for help with the cost of Council Tax from the local authority to whom you pay Council Tax if you are unemployed or on a low income. This is called Council Tax support or Council Tax reduction.

I need a job!

The University’s Careers Service is here to help all University of Brighton graduates seeking part time employment during study and full or part time opportunities after graduation. Do make use of their expert advice as they have excellent contacts within many professional sectors and they know what employers are looking for.

I want to do further study

Many student choose to go on to further postgraduate study, and the Careers Service can advise you on your options. If you study on an MA or MSc course then you may be eligible for a Postgraduate Masters Loan from Student Finance England.

The university runs a series of Postgraduate open events, which current and prospective students are welcome to attend. Education, Business and Photography all have events coming up in the next few weeks, or look for options around your subject area on our postgraduate course finder for more information.

How do I  start to repay my student loan?

Currently the income threshold for Plan 2 loan repayments is £25,725. As soon as your salary reaches this amount you are expected to start making regular repayments, but this will only be triggered from the April following course completion. So if you start earning £26,000 in October 2019, you will have to start repaying in April 2020. The Student Loans Company has some very clear information on the customer facing SLC repayment portal so you could do worse than invest 15 minutes of your day doing some research.

Can I claim benefits?

If you are unemployed, working part-time and/or on a low income, you may be eligible to claim Universal Credit to help with the costs of your rent and living expenses. You can only claim after the official end of your academic year (so with effect from 8 June 2019 in most cases) and you need to initiate your claim online.

Good luck with your life in the big wide universe!

Student Advice Service


Helen Abrahams • June 6, 2019

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