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Advice for parents and supporters

Explore our tips on how you can support your child with their finances

From tuition fees and textbooks to food and rent, when it comes to university, you might be thinking about how you and your child can afford the costs.

In our advice below, we give you valuable insights on how to support your child with their finances – from university budgeting tips and student finance guidance to discounts and scholarships.

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1. Know how much university costs for parents and supporters

Before your child applies to university, it’s important to consider how much university costs and whether you’ll need to support them in funding their studies. You can usually find out exactly what needs to be covered and get tuition fees online, via the university website.

In the UK, most undergraduate degrees cost up to £9,250 a year, and as parents and supporters, you won’t usually need to cover this fee. Your child will typically cover their tuition fees through Student Finance England, by applying for a loan of up to £9,250 a year.

When your child is looking at courses at Portsmouth, they'll find our courses list the tuition fees for UK, EU and International students, including any additional costs your child may need to consider during their studies, such as textbooks and other course materials.

Have questions? Discover our student finance guide for parents and supporters to find out the terms of tuition fee loans and how to apply.

2. Consider additional costs outside of their studies

As well as tuition fees, your child will need to plan for additional costs like accommodation, travel and social costs. And we know you’ll want to help your child prepare for these costs as best you can.

Explore our breakdown of living costs with your child, from bills and rent, to food shopping and travel, so you know exactly what needs to be covered.

Your child could apply for a maintenance loan or a grant, scholarship, bursary to help fund these costs. Support your child in contacting our university’s student finance team or read our maintenance loan guide to see what’s on offer.

Get in touch with our finance team

Explore our maintenance loan guide

Looking for affordable living costs? Portsmouth is one of the most affordable cities in the UK for university students to live and study (2023, University Living).

I budget for my most essential things before considering the non essential. For example money for rent, bills, food and transport I set aside in one of my savings account. For the non essentials, I set a limit for takeaways, ubers, meals out, shopping and other expenses.

Molly Mitchell, University of Portsmouth student

3. Create a budget together

Once you both know what your child needs to budget for, consider taking some time with them to help calculate and build a budget. Your child could also speak to someone they know at university, to get an idea of potential expenses.

There are many uni budgeting tips your child can use to help cover these living costs, such as creating a weekly budget, setting spending limits or breaking down essential and non-essential costs. To help them prepare, follow our guides below:

How to budget at uni

Plan out and stay on top of your student budget.

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Calculate your monthly budget

Use our budget calendar to forecast your spending each month, and whether you have enough money to cover everything.

Students walking outside
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4. Discuss ways to save

Despite Portsmouth being one of the most affordable cities in the UK for students, it's still worth taking the time to put together a budget. Creating a budget and tracking spending can help you afford to get your child through university. But discussing how to make money go further can make a big difference.

Encourage your child to research places and organisations that offer student discounts to reduce their monthly expenses, whether it's money off their food shop, travel or nights out.

How to reduce expenses with student discounts

20/11/2019.Student Finance....All Rights Reserved - Helen Yates- T: +44 (0)7790805960.Local copyright law applies to all print & online usage. Fees charged will comply with standard space rates and usage for that country, region or state.
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Explore our money-saving tips

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Cost of living support

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There are many options you can choose to afford university and lots of people you can talk to, to get advice on your options, the people I know have a range of backgrounds and have all been able to comfortably live at university.

Amelia Parr, University of Portsmouth student

5. Research the financial advice available at university

Attending uni is a big step for you and your child – with lots to consider, so it’s normal to have worries — including financial concerns.

Most UK universities have a student finance team on hand to give expert financial advice and help you and your child with your money-related worries. They can help you with a variety of concerns, such as:

  • Finance applications
  • Budgeting
  • Loan repayments
  • Appeals

At Portsmouth, our student finance team is available all year round to support you and your child, and are on hand to answer questions before or during your child’s time here.

I set myself a weekly budget and track how much I spend. Whenever I go out, I set a limit for myself to make sure I don't spend all my money. I do shops in bulk with my friends and we often cook together which also helps to bring down cost.

Harriet Odhiambo, University of Portsmouth student

Contact us

Student Finance Centre

+44 (0) 2392 843014


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Get the latest updates on how you can support your child through university.