DD is moving away to Uni!! General support and financial help needed

(28 Posts)
Debs75 Sat 16-Aug-14 15:15:52

DD has got into Uni but rather than it be the one up the road she is moving 2 hours away to the other side of the country!
It happened at clearing so we now have 4 weeks to:
buy everything she needs (I have a few lists so we know what to take)
Sort out accommodation (can that be done so near to starting?)
Sort out pre=existing health worries
Work out her finances.

She is off at work today so I can't actually do her accommodation and I don't have her loan details to hand so any help from others who have been through this or are going through it now some help would be gratefully received.

She is my eldest so this is the start of my babies leaving the nest sad

vickylu1 Sat 16-Aug-14 15:37:06

Awwww bless you, must be hard for her moving so far away.

Student loans company should be able to deal with you directly if you call them up.

They don't tend to pay anything until term has start though.

If budget is tight your daughter could apply directly to uni for access to learning find whilst waiting for the finance to come through from SLC.

Good luck

Debs75 Sat 16-Aug-14 15:51:46

I'm dreading taking her, I will cry all the way home. I know she doesn't get paid the first loan instalment until several days at Uni so she will have little money for freshers week. Luckily if she saves her wages she will have a couple of hundred and I can loan her some (we are on income support so very little money apart from savings for Christmas) I can't give her an allowance weekly but I will try where I can.
What is the access to learning fund?

Wait4nothing Sat 16-Aug-14 16:00:32

I assume she has already applied for student loans. She should be able to get a loan and grant to cover both her fees and living costs (though as you say she will need to budget). Get some things up front but also leave some things for her to get after a few weeks (when she has her loan and a better idea of what she needs)

futuredad Sat 16-Aug-14 16:09:48

Get in touch with the university's accommodation office as the vast majority will ensure that first year students will get a place in university owned/managed halls.

vickylu1 Sat 16-Aug-14 16:15:18

If you go on Uni website, they should have a section with info on the access to learning fund. As you're on a low income she should be well placed to receive this as I'm assuming it will be difficult to get all the neccessaries ready for the start of term. My Uni, you had to fill in a form and give a load of proof and explanation of what I needed it for etc..

Most unis do have an access to learning fund but they are limited so the sooner you apply the more chance she has of getting some extra assistance. Some are loans and some are grants depending on the situation. Good luck smile

unitarian Sat 16-Aug-14 16:36:01

Accommodation and student finance are best done when she's with you as students are classed as adults (Lord knows why!) so they are the only ones officialdom will speak to unless she gives them permission for you to speak to them on her behalf. Get her to put that in place for you with SFE if you can. The SFE phone people are very helpful on the whole.

The unis are pretty slick at this time of year. They are used to dealing with students after clearing and will generally be helpful about accommodation. If someone has enrolled through clearing it's because someone else hasn't taken up a place so there will be capacity.

I assume she has already applied for student finance. If so, she should get her money at the start of term but she will need some ready money for freshers' week - an astonishing amount if she goes to every event but her wages should see her through.

She will need a bank account to receive her loan money if she hasn't already got one and there are incentives such a railcards which make a visit to the bank worthwhile to open a student account.

What she takes with her depends on what sort of accommodation she is in but almost certainly bedding & towels will be needed. If she does need cutlery and basic cook ware then you can pick this up pretty easily and cheaply at the last minute.
Anything else she finds she needs, such as a clothes airer, she'll be able to source for herself once she's settled in.

unitarian Sat 16-Aug-14 16:41:16

Check with Student Finance asap because she has probably applied for it as though she will be living at home.

Debs75 Sat 16-Aug-14 19:56:04

She applied for student finance ages ago and that was at an away uni as well. She has applied to change it to the new uni so I am assuming it shouldn't change the amount.
Accommodation is halls where she is self-catering. I can cobble together crockery and cutlery so just need to work out what she will actually be eating to work out cooking utensils needed.
Bank accounts have already been looked at as her friend needed to open one so they researched together
Just checked and Uclan do have an access to learning so getting her to apply for that.

Do Uni's work this weekend? I am assuming they will be as clearing is only open for a week and every day counts

vickylu1 Sat 16-Aug-14 20:03:14

I don't know and doubt that the uni will be open at the weekend if mine was anything to go by! You never know though, worth giving them a call. Glad they do have access to learning fund, that will help. The student accounts, dare I say it, do usually have a decent overdraft that could cover her freshers activities if she didn't get access to learning or student finance quick enough, as long as she knows to pay it back straightaway and not use it in future. So many students get in loads of debt that way.

I hope you manage to sort it out well. Hope she's a good cook, most students seemed to eat in the canteen which was subsidised at my uni. Hopefully she'll manage to finish uni with minimal debt smile

Hope it all goes well smile

Debs75 Sat 16-Aug-14 20:48:33

Thanks Vickylu She is a dreadful cook bourne from the fact she only eats chicken and potatoes! No meat, no veg, no fruit, no cheap bulky foods. We are letting her meal plan next week so we can see what she will be buying and how much it will take out of her money each week.

Now I just need to get used to not seeing her everyday sad

vickylu1 Sat 16-Aug-14 22:33:07

Awwww yikes! I'm upset enough that my oldest is starting secondary and youngest starting primary but going off to Uni, yikes! I really feel for you. Hmmm at least potatoes are cheap! Good idea to give her test run with meal planning. I didn't go to Uni till I was 22 and had my oldest so I stayed at home and luckily learnt how to cook in my teens plus I'll eat pretty much anything so that helped.

Not sure of what your daughter's room mates set up will be. I think they usually share a kitchen so that can be nice if they take turns to cook something. My friend shared Uni digs and one person cooked pretty much every night and they all chipped in money towards the shopping, the non-cooks did the washing up. Pretty good system. smile

MillyMollyMama Sat 16-Aug-14 22:52:55

At least she might broaden her food intake by living with others! Look on the bright side! Most students do survive - don't they!

unitarian Sun 17-Aug-14 02:03:06

Quite honestly you and she seem to be getting on top of it already from what you say.
We had a lot of waiting around on Freshers' day so had a chance to glance at what other parents were unloading. Some arrived with a year's worth of pasta & rice as well as full-scale rice cookers! There is often not a lot of individual storage space in the Hall kitchens so there's not a lot of point in providing them with anything in bulk.
Teach her to make rice in a pan with a well-fitting lid and how to put together a stir-fry or chilli. She'll be fine because someone else will have a speciality and pretty soon they'll be eating together.

You will miss her terribly, I can't pretend otherwise, but you will have some lovely chats when you do see her. She will miss you too.
I wish her all the best.

cricketballs Sun 17-Aug-14 08:06:22

Agree with the meal planning - now it''s real and getting very close I have given the kitchen to DS for all of next week to do all meals for the week with just £25 to spend grin. As he's feeding his brother as well he knows that they will have to include some veg.

I've also noticed that although I have tried to make him independent (for example washing and ironing his own clothes fir the last few months) there are some things that I just do without thinking that one day he will have to do himself - like getting grass stains out of cricket whites!

vickylu1 Sun 17-Aug-14 08:18:03

I love the bulk bags of rice and pasta, haha! Sounds like something my mum would have sent me with had I gone to uni straight from school! Would have had to keep it under my bed!

Good luck to all the children (they're still children no matter what age) going off to uni. Hope you mums and dads find that you form a new bond with them whilst they're away. My relationship with my mum improved once we weren't living under the same roof!

Redhead11 Sun 17-Aug-14 08:35:26

I bulk bought things like pasta and rice for DD when she went to uni last year. If you have an Ikea near by, they are cheap as chips for things like pans, or go to Poundstretcher. I bought a vast box of washing powder for her from Lidl and she thinks it will last the whole 4 years! Unis are pretty good at the accommodation thing as they are used to this. I'm in Scotland, so not sure about additional finances in England. Have to say, the student loan company in Scotland can be a real pain and move at the speed of molasses.

Good luck with everything, although you sound as though you are coping well. And if you do cry when you leave her, try not to do it until after you have left.

unitarian Sun 17-Aug-14 16:03:46

Oh not mere 'bags' of pasta etc! The parental movement-of-stuff method du jour seems to be several of those clear plastic storage boxes which are too big to put under a bed!
They are useful for transportation but it is best to take them away again after the drop-off.
DD had to move rooms almost immediately because of a leak from the room above so she was glad to be relatively unencumbered.
These days she has refined her 'stuff' to what can fit into a KA and she uses those big Ikea bags.

AlisonW123 Sun 17-Aug-14 16:17:01

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unitarian Sun 17-Aug-14 18:30:20

One tip - provide at the very least a bottle of cooking oil, some salt & pepper and some basic herbs & spices. Coffee of course.

dementedma Tue 19-Aug-14 20:09:05

Hate to sound unsympathetic but she's only going to be 2 hours away! At 18 dd took off to au pair in Spain and didn't come home again for months!
2 hours is nothing.
Sounds like she has it all in hand so have fun buying bits and pieces for her and then turn her loose. No need for tears. She'll be back with her washing the first weekend.

madeofkent Tue 19-Aug-14 22:36:13

Don't knock the pasta and rice, DS loved having them! Also home-made jams and chutneys, washing up liquid and washing liquid, in fact all liquids, as many as he could store because they were so heavy for him to carry any distance. (I think we just make it easier for him to buy beer) And loo rolls and big boxes of cereal because they were so bulky to carry. We send him back every semester with a huge supply of dried goods now, the rest he buys. We use those foldable crates and store them under his bed. He has just moved out of halls into a house, and chose one because it had under-bed storage because he found it so useful for storing dry goods away from marauding flatmates!

Debs75 Thu 21-Aug-14 12:58:08

Dementedma it might only be 2 hours away but that equates to £30+ on bus, £40+ on train or £50+ in petrol so trips home will be limited. She also wants to visit her boyfriend who is moving away so she will save her money for that.

I have suggested cheap bulky meals like pasta but not sure on cupboard space so not buying much till we get there, she wants me to take her shopping when we get there so have now got her meal planning and costing her weeks food. I've suggested they all club together for essentials like milk, bread, butter, sugar, washing up liquid and loo rolls. I don't see the point in everyone bringing their own when there is limited space or having six half drunk bottles of milk all going off on the same day. <<inner control freak is starting to rise>>

Actually we are hoping she gets a place in halls as we are still waiting for confirmation from the Uni

LightastheBreeze Thu 21-Aug-14 14:29:07

If she gets a student rail card and picks her train journeys carefully she should be able to travel about quite cheaply by train. DS sometimes managed to travel over 100 miles for about £10, so worth looking into a good offer for a railcard.

unitarian Thu 21-Aug-14 16:44:56

DD's in London, a 3 hour drive away. It depends on the time of day you travel but she can come home by train for £9.
She has a free railcard from Nat West.

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