Student loan- should I take it or leave it?

I am entitled to £11k student loan for the past academic year. I did not previously claim the loan as I am working and don’t need the money. So I saw no point in paying interest unnecessarily. But with the cost of living crisis looming I am now wondering if I should take it ‘just in case’. My husband died a year ago and was the main income earner. I am now on my own with two kids- one about to go to uni herself. I will graduate this year so there will be no other opportunity for me to access those kind of funds. Should I take the loan as a safety net? I know you don’t have access to my financial information in order to judge but, let’s say I lost my job next week- I could probably survive for about 6-9 months without being completely done for. 
I wouldn’t be considering a loan from a bank but given the fact I may never even fully repay this loan it is a different proposition. 
Thanks for any advice. 


  • mcpitman
    mcpitman Posts: 1,267
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    I would advise to never take interest bearing credit when you don't need it.
    Life isn't about the number of breaths we take, but the moments that take our breath away. Like choking....
  • 400ixl
    400ixl Posts: 2,663
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    If this is the government student loan that you only pay back if your salary is over a certain point and only for a certain period, then I would look at the likelyhood of you having to pay it back, and by how much over what period.

    Just dismissing it without that investigation could mean giving up essentially free money as you will never have to pay it back, but equally leaving you with a debt at higher interest that you will be paying back for years.
  • Herzlos
    Herzlos Posts: 14,620
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    I'd look at the rate you'd need to pay for it and the criteria for paying it back. If it's low enough then you can always take it and stick it into a savings account - I knew a few people that did that (albeit 20 years ago).
  • Albermarle
    Albermarle Posts: 21,215
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    mcpitman said:
    I would advise to never take interest bearing credit when you don't need it.
    Good advice normally but the Student Loan is rather unusual , in that below a certain wage level you never have to pay it back or you only ever pay part of it back .

    OP - this is worth a read.

     Student loans: the truth about uni fees, loans & grants - MSE (
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