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Have you looked at the fee calculators for university fees?

(86 Posts)
CountessDracula Wed 14-Sep-11 10:24:49

Assuming an initial debt of £40k

A low earning graduate will pay off in £22k over 30 years
A middle earning graduate will pay off £56,409 over 24.5 years
A high earning graduate will pay off £50,208 over 14 years

How can it be right that the middle earner pays more than the high earner?

This system is a load of shite

LilyBolero Wed 14-Sep-11 10:27:03

It's total crap isn't it. If you are rich, your parents pay the fees for you. If you are poor, the Government pays 1/3 and the uni pays 1/3, if you are a normal person (ie parents earn a bit more than 15k), you not only pay for yourself, but have to pay half as much again, to subsidise the others.

It won't save money, and it is a crippling amount to pay back - a couple, both of whom are graduates, will be paying back £113,000 for their degrees. How will they ever get a mortgage?

This government has to go!

LilyBolero Wed 14-Sep-11 10:27:52

AND if you're Scottish or Welsh, you don't pay the full whack either.

For a system that claims to be dependent on future earnings, there are a lot of caveats - you will only pay £56 if you are English, middle-income and had parents who were middle-income.

saintlyjimjams Wed 14-Sep-11 12:10:34


PippiLongBottom Wed 14-Sep-11 12:12:49

I'm just going into my second year. That is depressing reading.

adamschic Wed 14-Sep-11 12:22:16

Some might not pay anything back at all.

There is a legal challenge going through the courts soon. I doubt they will win though.

CountessDracula Wed 14-Sep-11 12:23:38

if you never earn over £21k you will never pay back

dreamingofsun Wed 14-Sep-11 12:56:43

if you are doing a job where you only ever earn less than 21k i don't think you should have done a degree. it must either be a crap course or the job doesn't require it. this is a waste of public funds and i think should be discouraged by the gov, not encouraged by making it cheaper.

PippiLongBottom Wed 14-Sep-11 13:08:40

I am training to be a teacher so I will be earning over £21k. DD will be going to uni in 9 bloody years.

adamschic Wed 14-Sep-11 13:17:11

Dreamingofsun, I agree with you, but that would mean closing 50% of courses down, throwing uni employees out of jobs, taking money out of the economy in areas where these unis are. Then finding other means of employment or further education for those students, or pay them dole money instead.

You will also get situations where young women will go to uni, do a course in fashion design or similar, leave and start a family and never work therefore never pay anything back aswell as people who never earn an average wage.

I live in a low paid employment area and around 50% of people I work with are earning less than 25K myself included, some have degrees.

dreamingofsun Wed 14-Sep-11 13:20:47

adamschi - could they not do something else instead, eg apprenticeship? closing some of the courses down would save money surely and this could reduce the amount of debt students on other courses get into.

PippiLongBottom Wed 14-Sep-11 13:26:32

My cousin did an animation degree (ie drawing cartoons) and graduated ten years ago. He is a temp in a post room.

reallytired Wed 14-Sep-11 13:29:06

I feel that the governant should be geting unis to take some of the financial risk. If a course makes a graduate more employable then the uni should get a proportion of the money. Ie. If someone ears 100K a year as a the result of a degree then the uni has provided a good serivce.

Unis gain far to much by getting bums on seats for second rate degrees. If unis that failed to make their graduates employable had to pay the interest on the student loads it would make them think. There would be no moviation to offer mickey mouse studies to a third class student.

adamschic Wed 14-Sep-11 13:33:21

The new apprentice scheme is up and running atm, not sure if there are enough places to go around but I do know that the wage is £2.50 an hour. Would you advise your child to do it or to go to uni, have a ball, get a degree and only worry about paying it back when you earn 21K.

The current government didn't even bother to think it through properly, overhauling the HE system, they just rushed into bringing in 9K charges for English students only.

dreamingofsun Wed 14-Sep-11 14:58:52

adamschic - i would now consider advising my child to do an apprentice at 2.50. they may end up earning the same as a graduate - maybe more even - and they won't have tonnes of debt. and i speak as a graduate who's spent the last 18 years encouraging my children down the same route.

Do students in wales have to pay 9k as well now? I'm confused.

saggarmakersbottomknocker Wed 14-Sep-11 19:15:37

It's a total balls up if you ask me.

Fee increases were sold to us on future ability to pay. If that's the case then why are middle income families paying £9k in fees for part of that money to subsidise the fees for a lower income family? The graduate from that lower income family may go on to have a higher earning post than the graduate that subsidised him/her.

And what happened to £9k fees being the minority? All of the courses dd has looked at (and they're not all RG universities) intend to charge £9k.

It may look like a small weekly amount to pay back each week on earnings over £21k but when you factor in the likelihood of increased pension contributions in the future, rising housing costs etc I worry how my children will ever afford to live anywhere than under my roof. What a bloody prospect.

gramercy Wed 14-Sep-11 19:21:00

It's very depressing.

I just can't get my head around why there would be a fee reduction for low-income families. Maintenance awards, maybe, but fees, no.

Yet again, the powers that be know who they can tap for money - the mugs in the middle.

saggarmakersbottomknocker Wed 14-Sep-11 19:29:06

Absolutely gramercy - help with maintenance should be available for lower income families. Even on a 'middle income' (sort of) the maintenance costs are an issue. But help with fees, when it's not an upfront fee and repayment is based on future income - well I'm bloody furious about it TBH.

lenak Wed 14-Sep-11 19:53:45

I think people need to read more about how the new system actually works. There seems to be an awful lot of myths and misunderstanding.

A graduate under the new system will actually be paying around £540 per year less than a graduate under the current system and the loan does not actually appear on credit records, so there would be no more impact on mortgage applications etc than under the current system.

Yes, they will pay back more over a longer period, but the vast majority of people will never earn enough to have to pay back all of the fees before the 30 year time limit which means anyone who is paying up front is actually financially a bit stupid!

There also seem to be a lot of people who are already at uni who think these changes are going to affect them - they won't, they are for new 2012 starters only.

Martin Lewis was talking about this on five live the other day. He quoted a case of a 20 year old who had managed to save £30k to pay her tuition fees so that she did not financially burden her parents. He basically said that she would be financially better off both short terms and long term if she took the loan to pay her fees and kept that money for a house deposit when she finished uni.

It is also looking like the government have screwed up their calculations and will actually end up losing money due to so many people never paying back the full value of their loan.

In fact, the main downside to the new system is the change in the interest rate calculation - but as the repayments are linked to salary, again, it will have little impact for all but the very highest earners.

There is a lot of accurate information out there amongst all the scare mongering rubbish. I am beginning to think that one of the criteria for getting into uni should be the ability to understand the new fee system and its cost benefits to individuals against the old system.

I'm sick to death of hearing people go on about how it means that they will not be able to send their kids to uni, that it will affect credit scores or ability to get a mortgage because it won't.

The vast majority of graduates will be fundamentally better off than under the current system

saggarmakersbottomknocker Wed 14-Sep-11 20:15:38

Two of my ds's friends have recently applied for mortgages. I can assure you that lenders do take student loan repayments in to account. They'd be fools not to as it does affect affordability.

Personally (this being my 3rd child at university) I have a decent grasp on the facts and agree that the fee increase shouldn't affect the ability of a young person to go to university. However as stated earlier currently my son's fee payment doesn't subsidise a fee reduction for another student but my dd's in 2012 will. And that's not fair if the justification behind the fee increase was future ability to pay.

With regard to cost and whether we can afford to send her, the fee increase doesn't make a difference She'll take the full loan, but if the government thinks that £9k fees won't affect a student's decision to go to university then they have no idea how lower income families view debt. But maybe that's just what they want.

It's a fact that the maintenance loans don't cover living costs (even in cheaper Northern universities) and we will be bank-rolling dd in that respect. Only last night I sat with my son and looked at his finances for his final year. After paying his accommodation he has £35 a week to live on. That needs to cover food, travel, books, phone, printing costs etc. Jobs are thin on the ground in the current climate.

larry5 Wed 14-Sep-11 21:20:54

I can strongly advise watching the video on the moneysaving expert web site as Martin Lewis explains everything much better than I can.

Dd is currently at uni but will be probably paying the new fees in two years time when she wants to do a PGCE.

lenak Wed 14-Sep-11 21:24:31

Saggarmakers None of the mortgage companies we have used have ever taken my student loan repayments into account. Some ask for net income rather than gross, in which case, under the new system people will be more likely to get a mortgage as their net income will be more than those repaying under the current scheme. Student loans don't appear on credit files.

The fairness of the fees subsidising a fee reduction for another student is a completely different argument to the affordability one.

Maintenance loans haven't covered living costs for years - again, it has nothing to do with the new system or the £9k fees. The student loan didn't cover living costs when I was at uni (and I went when fees were £1400 a year up front). My parents paid my fees and I had worked to subsidise my living costs. That particular situation is nothing new!

saggarmakersbottomknocker Wed 14-Sep-11 21:50:11

Of course maintenance loans have nothing to do with the increase in fees - I'm not suggesting that.

My point is that students from lower income families (and some middle income) will view this as a 'whole cost' . £27k debt for fees, around £15 for maintenance plus parental contribution to cover shortfall is massive for families who historically don't 'do debt'. Rightly or wrongly, they will be put off. They are being put off.

adamschic Wed 14-Sep-11 22:37:01

The bursaries that are in place for students from lower income famililies can be used for tuition fees or there may be a fee waiver for the first year or can be taken to help with living expenses. I have told DD to take any bursaries going for help with living costs and take the tuition fee loans so her degree will cost 27K. With a bit of luck she won't need the maintenance loan.

If I had another adult bringing in a salary or was on a much higher salary myself I could help a bit with accommodation cost etc, but won't be able to so am grateful that extra help is available.

saggarmakersbottomknocker Thu 15-Sep-11 08:38:34

Your post illustrates the point I'm making adamschic.

Your dd may get fee remission. Mine won't, it will be her that's funding your dd's remission. When they leave university your dd may well earn more than mine and have greater ability to repay.

Your household income is probably currently less than mine and your child is likely to leave university with less debt than mine based on what you've said.

If it's based on future ability to pay, how is this situation fair on middle income families? I don't actually count us as a middle income family TBH - we're in the bit inbetween and hence get no help but can't really afford to help out either.

I'm not having a go at you or your situation BTW just using it to make a point. smile Your dd should take all the helps she can get.

Just going back to the point you made earlier lenak 'The fairness of the fees subsidising a fee reduction for another student is a completely different argument to the affordability one' - I take your point here but the reality is that many students would have a fair bit less debt if they were paying just the fees and not someone else's fee subsidy too.

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