The interest rate charged on student loans will rise to 6.1% from 1 September, the Student Loans Company (SLC) has confirmed.

Students starting a new course this autumn will be charged the new interest rate as soon as they arrive.

Those who come into repayment from April 2018 will be charged interest at 3.1% as long as they are earning less than £21,000.

This increases on a sliding scale up to 6.1% for those earning more than £41,000.

Borrowers in England taking out a postgraduate loan for a Master’s degree will also be charged 6.1%.

The repayment threshold for graduates and postgraduates remains at £21,000.

For anyone who took out a student loan before 2012, the maximum interest rate set for existing loans will be 3.1% until 31 August 2018, but as the low interest cap has been triggered, the rate charged from 1 September 2017 will be 1.25%.

Around 15,000 people applied for courses after getting their exam results last year
The repayment threshold for pre-2012 loans will rise to £18,330 from 6 April 2018.

As thousands of A-level students await their results this week, the SLC is urging people to get their student finance in place for the year ahead.

Figures released by UCAS show that around 15,000 people applied for university courses last year after getting their exam results.

Those in a similar situation this year are being advised to apply for finance as soon as possible as it can take six weeks to process a loan application.

SLC said students may not get all their money in time for the start of term, but Student Finance England will make an initial assessment so students will have some money as soon as possible.

You can get more information, register for an online account and submit an application at www.gov.uk/student-finance/overview.

It’s not too late to apply for finance

Derek Ross, director of operations, SLC
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Derek Ross, director of operations at SLC, said: “We want students to know that it’s not too late to apply for finance but also that applications can take around six weeks to process so we’ll make an initial assessment of their finance to get some money to them as close to the start of term as possible.

“The sooner they submit their application the sooner we can get their student finance in place for them.”