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There’s an old saying that there’s more to life than money, and that’s true enough — more or less. The flipside, though, is that if you don’t have the money to cover your costs it can severely limit your options. So, although there’s more to life than money, money can open doors and help you live the life you want to live.

If you’re starting your first term of 2020, it just makes sense to line up as much funding as you possibly can. The goal should be to have enough to cover your costs, enough to spend on life’s little luxuries, and some extra to put aside for the future, too.

That’s all well and good, but how do you actually do it? How can you maximise your funding in your first term of 2020?

Begin with budgeting 

The best place to start is with your budget. If you don’t have a budget, set some time aside and draw one up. Once you have a solid understanding of how much money you have, and what your expenses are going to be, you’ll have a better idea of how much money you’re going to need.

Get everything you’re entitled to

If you’ve not yet got your student finance sorted, make sure that you get onto it as soon as you possibly can. With a Tuition Fee Loan and a Maintenance Loan for living costs, your tuition will be covered, as well as some day-to-day expenses like course materials, accommodation, and the like. The amount you can get depends on your circumstances, so check out the UK Government’s Student Finance page or the UCAS Finance page for more info.

Bursaries, grants, and scholarships

Then, there are bursaries, grants, and scholarships. A scholarship is based on achievements in areas like academics, performance, and sports, whereas a bursary is based on your needs. Unlike your student loan, these don’t usually have to be paid back — except in some circumstances, like if you drop out of your course.

There are NHS bursaries, specific to medical and dental training, which you can find out more about from the NHS website.

You should also check out the UCAS “Additional Funding” page for info on what’s available, and go to the Funding section on to see what you might be eligible for.

You could also find some valuable information on the Scholarship Hub website, or at the Turn2Us Grant Search page — and don’t forget to speak to student services at your university, who will be able to point you in the right direction.

Other ways to increase your income

Of course, there are plenty of other ways to earn extra money, like picking up extra shifts and paid overtime, looking into paid surveys and freelance gigs, and even asking your family for help. You can find out more about maximising your income on Blackbullion’s Budgeting Pathway, and you can check out our resources for more tips on how to manage your money.

There’s more to life than money, but once you’ve got your money sorted you can start to enjoy your life without the financial stress.