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Freshers expect to graduate with 39K debt

By Lucy Bower

3 October2021

Freshers This year's intake of bright-eyed and fresh-faced students already expect to leave university with 39,000 of debt. That level of debt is almost double last year's students, who expect debts of around 20,000, according to research by the Money Advice Service.

With the price of a university education reaching nearly 40,000, students are prepared to be creative to avoid debt and make ends meet. 30% say they would consider living at home, 29% would consider skipping meals, 31% would switch off the central heating and 27% would go without course text books.

Most won't just rely on their student loan, choosing to work their way through university. Nearly two thirds (60%) of participants said they work at some point during the year and just over a quarter (27%) will have a job in term time and in the holidays.

Even with their best efforts to cut costs and earn a living while studying, most students will still go into debt for a degree. 80% have taken out some kind of student loan, 25% borrow money from their parents or grandparents, around a third (34%) have an overdraft and 14% are using credit cards.

The YouGov survey sampled 1,434 18-to-24-year-olds, including 1,011 students and 423 recent graduates.

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Tags: freshers, student debt, uni, Money Advice Service

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