Three-quarters of grads could be paying off loans in their 50s

According to new research from the Sutton Trust, nearly three-quarters of UK graduates will still be paying off their student loans in their 40s and 50s and many won’t pay it off at all.

Tuition fees rose to a maximum of £9,000 a year in 2012, almost three times as much as the previous fee, which was around £3,000 between 1998 and 2011. The study, Payback Time?, found that a typical student would now leave university with “much higher debts than before,” averaging over £44,000.

These startling figures are causing young people to look more seriously at alternative options to university, such as apprenticeships. With a steady wage, recognised qualifications in a number of industries and the probability of a job upon completion, it really is beginning to look like the more attractive option.