How much for a student to live on per week?

(71 Posts)
bonnyshide Wed 13-Jun-18 20:23:55

My DS will be staying in self catered student accommodation (with utilities & WiFi included in the cost) we will use his maintenance loan to pay for this (which won't cover it, so we will pay the shortfall)

How much will we need to give him monthly to cover: food, clothing, toiletries, travel (train travel home only), books / stationery, recreation money?

We will continue to pay his mobile phone contract.

As we probably can't afford to cover everything he will need to get a job, I am just looking for a rough idea of monthly costs as a starting point.

OP’s posts: |
feltcarrot Wed 13-Jun-18 20:30:06

We gave Dd £70 pw when she lived in halls to cover food/ vodka! Travel home was covered by us as and when, we also pay her phone bill. In second year we upped it to £80pw as she now has to pay utility bills.
We occasionally bung her extra if she’s struggling. We were advised to start low and see if she can budget as we can always increase her allowance, bit more difficult to reduce it!

MrsBartlet Wed 13-Jun-18 20:32:30

We (like many people) do it the other way round. We pay the accommodation bill and dd lives off her minimum maintenance loan. Even if you don't want to do that it may give you a starting point to work out how much money he will need to live on.

bonnyshide Wed 13-Jun-18 20:33:22

Thanks for replying, excellent idea about starting low and then increasing if necessary.

OP’s posts: |
InDubiousBattle Wed 13-Jun-18 20:37:07

My nephew and neice are both at uni at the moment. They say that they spend around £15-20 a week at aldi to eat (very well) so I would think that £50-60 would be enough to have a night out too. Working over the holidays should cover the travel, clothes extras etc.

mysteryfairy Wed 13-Jun-18 20:40:58

We pay rent, any one off large expenses (gym membership, phone contract) and £100 a week. In first year we paid weekly on a Monday following a tip from another parent to ensure that all the week’s money could not be blown on a big weekend. I pay monthly now as he says he’d rather be able to budget better for any big expenses (mostly gig tickets I think!) and has shown he can manage ok.

Sunflower6 Wed 13-Jun-18 20:44:30

I've been looking at this I'm a single parent and can't afford to pay my son's rent but will top him up monthly re living expenses and he will need to get a part time job/has savings. I am no good at links but if you go to Southampton uni website, click on money matters and then click on how to budget it gives an example of living costs for a student which I found helpful.


bonnyshide Wed 13-Jun-18 20:55:04

Thank you everyone who is responding, it's really helpful.

Here is the link to the budgeting help on Southampton Universities website as mentioned by a pp, it's very useful thank you

OP’s posts: |
Needmoresleep Thu 14-Jun-18 01:35:47

DD managed on roughly £75 a week without a problem. Those whose parents paid accommodation obviously had more, but DD did not find it too difficult. She was one of tge few who did not run up an overdraft.

1. Students are likely to spend what they have.

2. A cooking course is a good investment. DD is happy whipping up a risotto in the time it takes others to order a take away.

3. Watch our if he is playing a sport for a University team costs mount up. Gym membership, society fees, blazer and kit. DD really needed more in her first term and less in subsequent ones.

4. Ensure he is aware of different rail and coach fares home. They can vary a lot.

ChangoMutney Thu 14-Jun-18 13:14:29

I'm doing the same as the OP and plan to keep paying the phone bill and for journeys home, I'm going to give £60 pe to cover food. No bus fare needed and gym is included in accommodation as is laundry, if she wants to have a social life she'll have to get a job.

Xenia Thu 14-Jun-18 15:11:58

It's hard to generalise and many manage on not too much by taking jobs. Mine are very lucky as I pay them £150 a week each all year and they share a car which I pay for (they pay for their petrol out of the £150 and I provide food in holidays) (and I pay their fees and rent).

BuggerOffAndGoodDayToYou Thu 14-Jun-18 17:40:49

We pay the difference between the maintenance loan and rent for DD and then send her £250 per month for food, utility bills and any extras. If she gets any work shifts then that is a bonus for her but it isn’t regular and we would rather she studied than worked at the moment.

We’ve always told her to let us know if she needs any more but she hasn’t asked for any extra so far (just finished 2nd year).

DailyMailFail101 Thu 14-Jun-18 17:45:53

Rather than send money for food I would get a online shop to deliver each week, you can be sure they have some food and the basics like milk rather than worrying they have spent it all on alcohol! 🙄

Fad Thu 14-Jun-18 19:09:38

If you look at how much student loan they get and top up to the maximum it's a reasonable guide.
Both of mine managed on £200 a month after rent / bills. On top of that I paid for sports membership which was ridiculously expensive and a bus pass.
Having said that they are both quite careful and not big spenders.

Sofabitch Thu 14-Jun-18 19:41:13

Some of you give yours more than I survived on with 4 children!

£250 a week! Blimey they will be in for a shock once they hit the real world

captainofashipwreck Thu 14-Jun-18 19:46:51

DD manages on minimal living loan and rest paid for by working. She is one of very few of her friends not using an overdraft.

argumentativefeminist Thu 14-Jun-18 21:21:41

Please do not send a food shop that you've chosen to your adult son or daughter at university confused but fair enough agree that you'll pay for the food shop so long as it's below x amount

BareGrylls Thu 14-Jun-18 21:45:22

your adult son or daughter
As soon as I see that phrase on MN I know what's coming.
Some kind of resentment that we still care about / parent a child who is 18.

Usually from someone who a) has very small children b) no children and almost certainly is not a parent of a teenager.

argumentativefeminist Thu 14-Jun-18 22:07:48

My mum definitely still cares about me and definitely still parents me. But as a 20yr old undergrad I also know that in most places someone with a food shop delivered picked by their mum would have the piss taken out of them. Unless you know your dc would definitely appreciate/genuinely need that, I think it's best to let them work it out for themselves.

BuggerOffAndGoodDayToYou Thu 14-Jun-18 23:01:40

£250 a week! Blimey they will be in for a shock once they hit the real world

No, I send her £250 per MONTH. She pays for everything but her rent from that. Food, utilities, travel, gym, phone.....

Fabricwitch Thu 14-Jun-18 23:20:19

I lived on about £50 a week in uni after rent and bills, so food, college supplies (art college so they weren't cheap), phone credit, clothes, going out (for us poor students this involved drinking a bottle of wine at someone's house then going out and spending next to nothing), and trains home. I finished 3 years ago so understand prices will have gone up, but that was plenty. There were students who had more money, and students who had less.

FrostyCock Thu 14-Jun-18 23:33:07

We are doing exactly the same as you OP, ie covering the shortfall between loan and accommodation cost and giving DD (and hopefully DS in September) a weekly allowance. We give her £50 a week (bills are included in her accommodation) plus pay for her phone, plus take her to the supermarket when we visit, and I think we gave her some extra in the first week for books and stuff. She seems to manage fine and has never complained about being short. This is in a cheap northern city though, so that might make a difference.

3catsandcounting Thu 14-Jun-18 23:42:29

We pay the difference between the maintenance loan and the rent, which is about £1400 a year, and put £50 a week into DDs account for food/toiletries etc (no transport costs)
We pay for train fares home and phone contract.
She manages well on this.

Xenia Fri 15-Jun-18 06:01:41

Yes I think my £150 a week was the most generous so far - lucky boys. I hope they appreciate it!

MarchingFrogs Sun 17-Jun-18 11:01:15

I would never organise a shopping delivery for one of ours unless I had consulted them beforehand and agreed what was needed. Discussions about sensible eating and planning ahead, etc, yes - foisting random catering 'choices' on them, definitely not. I would worry less about the mickey taking than a piling up of mouldering items which didn't actually fit in with their plans / needs.

Hopefully DS1's flatmates didn't take the piss out of him too much for the one and only delivery I have organised during his three years at university (a cheer up pressie of three varieties of hot chocolate from Whittard's).

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