When choosing a university, cost of living is likely to be a factor in your decision-making. Budgeting is about weighing up the money you have coming in, versus what you think you'll need to pay bills or rent. It can be quite a complicated process, so we've constructed a simple but realistic annual income and expenditure summary. This should help to make monitoring your finances easier.

Annual student budget

A sample budget for 2018 entrants

Download an Annual Student Budget Sheet >
Income £
Tuition Fee Loan 9,250 
Maintenance Loan 7,500
Term time/vacation work 3,000
Total income 19,750
Expenditure £
Tuition fee 9,250
Rent* 4,500
Electricity, gas, water 250
Mobile/internet 220
Insurance 150
Food and drink 1,500
Toiletries 260
Laundry 100
Books and course supplies 300
Clothes and shoes 600
Travel and transport 500
Going out 1,000
Home entertainment 120
Sports and leisure 200
Holidays and presents 500
Emergencies 300
Total expenses 19,750
* This is for room only, shared bathroom accommodation in university residences. For an ensuite room you can expect to pay over £5,000 per year.

In this example, we have assumed that you come from England and:

  • are studying in England (but outside London);
  • are not living at home;
  • you have a tuition fee loan to cover tuition fees of £9,250;
  • you receive a Maintenance Loan of £7,500.

We have not taken into account any bursaries or scholarships you may be eligible for.

Note, some rents for university accommodation can include bills or insurance, see our university profiles, 'living here' section.