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Helping my DD with her University Costs?

(77 Posts)
fizzyhead Tue 20-Sep-11 21:10:52


My DS father has been missing from our life for many years so I have always taken care of all her needs by myself. I re-married and have another child. Because of my DH our family income exceeds the minimum income to apply for a grant. Although DH does not fund my DS's living or educational costs.

So.... the boring bit over..... Do people usually pay for their children's accommodation/living expenses/train tickets (she'll be applying to Unis for 2012 entry away from London, where we live) or do most students pay for themselves?

Only tonight my daughter was telling me (when I expressed my worries at the extraordinary amount of money expected to fork out for expenses) that that's why most parents open an University fund for their children and they pay into it for years - Is this true? She made me feel awful, I told her that having paid for uniforms, holidays, tutors, summer camps, extra-curricular activities, birthday parties, mobile phones and everything else all these years ALL BY MYSELF I just hadn't been able to open a University fund and I don't believe that so many parents do so. She insisted that she knows looooads of people whose parents have this covered.

Now, as I'm working full time, I suppose I'll end up paying for all her expenses, at least for the first year. Is this wrong? Is this right? Yes, I'll be dried up like a raisin, but what else would I want to spend any money I earn on? Do we provide for our children until they are 17 and then send them on their way? Or do we still provide for them while they still need us, no matter how old they are?

can I have some thoughts on this please????

many thanks.

CherryLip Tue 20-Sep-11 22:19:59

I think only the very financiallly astute do the fund! When we had our DD we only thought of what we she is due to go to Uni a little bit of saving would be good but hey what with shool fees etc! I think for Uni parents will need to up the loan.

CherryLip Tue 20-Sep-11 22:20:37

Sorry school

skirt Tue 20-Sep-11 22:24:28

We don't pay for ours, that would be stupid as she can get cheap student loans for accom and fees. We do give her 230 a month and expect her to work too.

rattie77 Tue 20-Sep-11 22:54:01

Unfortunately, we haven't really been able to help our children through uni, apart from initially seting them up with things they need to start etc. Our daughter was pretty much self sufficient from 16 - she is very independent and has always worked alongside studying. She is 27 now and training to be a clinical psychologist and when I express my worries that she has been so self sufficient she says it has done her no harm at all and she values things, it has made her independent etc. Our son has just gone to uni (last weekend) and we did set him up as such, but won't be able to pay accomodation or top up his bank etc on a regular basis. Again I feel pretty bad about this, but he is very similar to out DD - always worked whilst studying and has no issue with it. I must admit I was really shocked when I noticed huge TV sets being carried into students flats at the weekend - and I felt that he may feel "inferior" to the others, but I spoke to him today and all is good. I was thinking as we left a fund would have been a good idea but there was no way we could have done one - so pointless worrying. All I can offer is my experience and I think it does them some good to be independent and learn to manage.

lovemydog Tue 20-Sep-11 22:58:13

Agreed with skirt. DS takes tuition fees loan and maintenance loan (which just covers his rent). We give him £100 per week which I think is generous - but is also the equivalent of 2 days a week for a preschooler at nursery so not impossible (for many of us).

mumblechum1 Tue 20-Sep-11 22:58:19

We're planning to foot the bill for everything so ds doesn't get into debt at all, but tbh not sure whether that's the financially astute thing to do, as everyone tells me he'll never have to worry about paying it back; we just don't like the idea of being in debt.

Haven't set up a fund as such, it'll just come out of the general savings fund as and when necessary.

lovemydog Tue 20-Sep-11 23:15:31

mumblechum I think it's great you can do this. I went to Uni on a full grant in the late 70s and graduated with (a small amount of) money in the bank and hoped we'd be able to do the same for DS. Hasn't quite worked out like this but I hope we'll be able to help him repay early.

Alibabaandthe80nappies Tue 20-Sep-11 23:22:11

We plan to foot the bill for everything when our boys go - many years time but we are planning already.

I got no grant when I went and my parents paid for everything, although obviously I worked in the holidays to fund my clothes and social life.

Doesn't your DH help you at all? Obviously his income means you get no help, so it would be kind of him to help fund this. I know your DD is not his child, but you are his wife....

Shodan Tue 20-Sep-11 23:27:06

DS1 also hopes to go to uni in a couple of years and DH earns above the limit for grants etc. (DH is not ds1's bio father). We have decided that ds1 will fund his way through uni with loans but we will help out whenever we can, possibly by setting up a savings account with a higher rate of interest which he can use to pay towards his loan, when necessary.

As it happens I have been paying a small amount into a savings plan for some years for him, which will mature when he's 22, and DH has said he will convert one of his cash ISAs and pay in a set amount each month; this will also mature at about the same time.

I don't know anyone who has been paying into a uni fund for their children- they must exist as I've heard them mentioned on films but never met any of them! grin

cat64 Tue 20-Sep-11 23:27:57

Message withdrawn

Shodan Tue 20-Sep-11 23:28:52

Oh and also we would expect him to work in the vacs, but not, I think, during term-time, as he plans to do Law and I have a feeling the workload may be too heavy. Happy to be corrected on that one though!

lovemydog Tue 20-Sep-11 23:29:54

cat64 you've got it right!

mumeeee Wed 21-Sep-11 19:02:04

For both DD1 and DD2 we paid for all of the accommodation in the first year. But after this they paid some of the rent. DD2 has just started her 3 rd year her rent is £395 a month she pays £95 of that and all her bills. She had stayed in the house over the summer as she had a job up there . she paid the full rent for July and August.
We don't give her ant other money. Although I did buy her some of the books on the reading list when she started. I also sometimes send her little bits and pieces. But that's mainly because she likes getting a parcel from home.

tallulah Wed 21-Sep-11 19:11:36

We made it clear to our DC that there was no money for them. They worked in the summer holidays after GCSE/ AS and A2 and were told to put money away. In return we took no "board" off them all the time they were students so any money was theirs.

Our contribution has been to take them to all the open days/ interviews etc (usually involving overnight stays) and then to provide them with all the "stuff" they need, and drive them backwards and forwards with their stuff each term. (Not cheap as each of them has ended up 5-7 hours drive away- in different directions). We have then bought their first lot of groceries and stocked up their fridge and cupboards.

I've never met anyone with a fund. I suspect your DD has been watching too many American films grin

saggarmakersbottomknocker Wed 21-Sep-11 19:16:51

Whatever your income your dd can apply for a maintenance loan to help with accommodation and living costs. It's likely that it won't cover everything and she'll either have to get part-time work, or you help her out or a bit of both.

ds2's loan leaves him with about £35 to live on after he's paid for his halls. That's for all his other expenses including food. We'll be helping where we can but he's going to have to find work - which is a bit thin on the ground at the moment.

mumeeee Wed 21-Sep-11 19:30:47

DD2 does have tuition and maintenance student loan. But her maintenance would only just cover her accommodation fees. In fact halls were actually more than her loan. So that's why we pay the rent. We did the same for DD1. We only help them until they finish uni after that we expect them to fund themselves. Obviously if they needed to come home because they didn't have enough finance to rent somewhere we would have a place for them.

mumeeee Wed 21-Sep-11 19:34:43

Mumblechum. We wouldn't have been able to fund all our DDs university costs. So they had to get a loan although I don't like the idea of them being in debt.

Riveninabingle Wed 21-Sep-11 19:38:26

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Alibabaandthe80nappies Wed 21-Sep-11 20:19:50

I just wanted to clarify, that although I was funded through Uni and plan to do the same for the DSs, there was (and will be) a finite amount of money. I didn't have an open wallet to dip into and neither will my boys.

A friend of mine had all her hall fees/rent etc paid, plus a monthly amount for food etc - and a card on her Dad's Barclaycard account for anything else that 'cropped up'! shock
In fairness to her, she didn't take the piss and now has a v.senior job, earns well and pays her own way in life. Her brother on the other hand....... grin

Riven - I'm guessing she won't be making that mistake again wink

NadiaWadia Wed 21-Sep-11 20:24:06

I wanted to help DD as much as possible and also didn't like the idea of her being in debt to SLC. But now she has started and we've realised that her uni accommodation costs mean there will be NOTHING left of her grant/loan, we will have to give her a weekly allowance just to live on, £80 a week we thought. We just don't have the money to pay off any of the student loan on top of this, so she will still leave with the full debt I'm afraid despite our contributions. Which sucks!

Can't help the feeling that the universities squeeze an awful amount of their 1st years on accommodation costs. They seem to push the amount as high as they feasibly can and use the students/their families as cash cows. Or is that unfair?

I suppose we shoud just be grateful that she got in this year. Feel so so sorry for anyone starting in 2012.

Betelguese Wed 21-Sep-11 20:43:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Riveninabingle Wed 21-Sep-11 20:54:46

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Betelguese Wed 21-Sep-11 20:58:14

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Betelguese Wed 21-Sep-11 20:59:39

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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