If you’re struggling financially and find yourself unable to cover essential, day-to-day living costs, you could be eligible for extra money through the University’s Living Cost Support Fund.
With rising energy prices across the UK, we know that many students may be feeling anxious about bills, financial wellbeing and understanding how the situation may impact you.
Your Students’ Union has created a webpage to help explain the energy price cap to ensure you are supported and informed on the issue. In short, it is expected that there will be an increase in energy bills across households in the UK on 1 April 2022 when the energy price cap is set to rise by 54%. For students, this could mean larger than expected bills for private tenancy contracts.
However, we’d like to reassure students that:
- All bills will remain included in University Halls and students will not be charged a supplement because of price changes in any given year.
- As has always been the case, the Living Cost Support Fund will remain available to all students (regardless of mode of study or nationality) who find themselves in financial difficulty. There is no cap on the number of awards we make each year and we award grants of up to £2000 to help you overcome financial hardship or unforeseen additional costs.
If you live in private accommodation, we recommend you check the terms and conditions of your housing contract – whether you have a bills inclusive agreement or not – to determine how you are likely to be affected. Even if you have a bills inclusive agreement, if your contract permits it, your landlord can raise your bill in line with the rise in energy costs.
If you’re unsure what type of tenancy agreement you have, Manchester Student Homes offers a free contract checking service and can help answer any questions you may have.
If you and your housemates organise your bills yourselves, visit the Save the Student’s comparison site to make sure you’re getting the best deals. We also recommend you get a smart meter to help you keep track of your energy usage.
Further support for students
The SU Advice Service provides an emergency loan scheme for students. You can apply for a short-term loan of up to £100. The loan is interest free, and repayment is arranged for a time that is best for you. The service also provides foodbank vouchers if you are struggling. A voucher can be exchanged at your local foodbank for a parcel usually containing 3 to 4 days’ worth of food. Find out how you can apply for both these support services here.
If you find yourself getting behind with your essential living costs such as your rent or bills, it’s important to reach out and access support. You can receive free and confidential debt advice from the Citizens Advice Bureau by calling 0800 240 4420, Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm or via their Webchat service. For further advice, visit the Student Support Financial Wellbeing page which covers everything from bills, budgeting and rent, to cost of living.