Better Loans For Students

  • Flexible Repayments are linked to your income. If you earn more than you expected, you repay more and if you earn less you repay less*.
  • Defined You will make 60 monthly repayments and that is it.**.
  • Merit-based The amount of income you share is based on a prediction of your future earnings, not your / family wealth.***.
  • Lower average APR for most Borrowers pay back an estimated representative 9.0% APR (variable) on average, which is lower than our competitor's representative 15.9% APR (variable)††. This means that for the majority of customers, StepEx has a lower average APR than key competitors, however for the minority of customers who earn more than we expect them to, the APR could be more expensive.

*For more information please read our Affordability Policy. **Excluding the transaction charge of 50p for months during which you earn below the minimum earning threshold. The 60 monthly repayments may not be over consecutive months, if for example you earn below the minimum threshold and your payment is deferred. This means that it may take you longer than 60 months to repay the loan. ***A key component of our affordability and creditworthiness checking is based on your predicted graduate earnings, however we do also take into consideration your credit score and history. Your APR may be higher or lower as repayments are directly linked to your income after graduation, not a fixed or variable interest rate. ††Competitor rates based off Future Finance Student Loan representative 15.9% APR (variable), May 2019.

We provide loans in return for a share of your future income for 5 years after you graduate*

Income sharing agreement diagram

This diagram is for illustration purposes only, and is not to scale. *The repayment term is 60 months (5 x 12 months) with repayments only made when gross income exceeds the minimum income threshold (currently £21,000).

Representative Example

Jane needs £20,000 of funding to complete the final year of her MBA, which she graduates from in late 2020.

She accepts an offer through StepEx, receiving £20,000 in return for 7.4% of her gross income over 5 years.

Jane begins her first job after graduating on Jan. 1st, 2021, and she begins to share her income as shown in the table below.

Example 2021 2022 2023 2024 2025
Jane's Income £60,000 £65,000 £70,000 £75,000 £80,000
Repayments @ 7.4% share of income £4,460 £4,830 £5,200 £5,580 £5,950

NB: Numerical data has been rounded for simplicity. For a more detailed breakdown of repayments and reporting, see the full example

Repayments

Total Received £20,000, Total Repayed £26,026, Representative APR 9.0% (variable).


This product does not have a fixed APR. Instead both repayments and the total amount to be repaid is linked to the amount of income earned. This means that if you earn more than StepEx estimated, your APR will be higher, and if you earn less than estimated your APR will be lower. The table below shows the probability that the APR a representative borrower would actually repay is double, or half the representative average APR.

APR Probability
Less than half (4.5%) of the stated APR 14.9%
Less than stated APR 51.0%
Greater than twice (18%) the stated APR 10.6%

Based off a representative example of Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) graduates from a range of UK universities, drawing on data from 2006 to 2016. For graduates of different degrees, these values may be higher or lower. The maximum you could repay is 5 times the amount of credit initially borrowed.

Repayments

  • You won’t be required to make any repayments whilst your annual income is less than £21,000.

  • For most people, this means they won't need to make any repayments during the standard study period and that repayments will not start until they get a job.

  • This also gives you peace of mind that if your annual income falls below £21,000 you will not be required to make repayments during that period (other than nominal 50p charges). However, because the term of a StepEx loan is linked to the number of repayments you make rather than a fixed period of time (unlike a typical unsecured personal loan which is likely to have a fixed term – for example, 5 years) the term of your loan will be longer as a result of any periods during which you do not make repayments. For example, if you earn above the threshold for the first 12 months after graduation, but then your gross income falls below £21,000, your payments will not resume (other than 50p charges) until your gross income is above £21,000 again, in total you will still make 60 monthly payments, as missed payments will be deferred.

  • Repayments will be required monthly during periods when your annual income is above the £21,000 threshold and are based on self-estimated income reports you will be required to verify through submission of your P60 / annual tax return.

  • The amount you repay is based on the income you earn. If you earn less than expected, the total you repay will be less, conversely if you earn more than expected you will repay more.

Eligibility Criteria

StepEx gives ambitious students a chance to pursue higher education. There are some criteria that apply to borrowers looking to gain funds through our platform.

  • Over 18 years old
  • UK Citizen
  • UK Bank Account
  • No convictions for financial crimes
  • Been accepted to, and plan to attend an approved course at an eligible UK educational institution
I'm eligible

FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

No, your credit score will not be affected by receiving a quote for a loan, or for receiving an offer and declining it.
Anyone who fulfils our eligibility requirements listed above, however our quote will be subject to our assessment of your circumstances.
StepEx currently only allows UK permanent residents to use their platform.
You can borrow up to the total course fee, and up to £12,500 for living expenses, but how much we will lend is ultimately subject to our assessment of your circumstances.
Yes, but before you receive the money you will need to verify your status as a student.
You won’t be required to make any repayments whilst your annual income is less than £21,000.

However, because the term of a StepEx loan is linked to the number of repayments you make rather than a fixed period of time (unlike a typical unsecured personal loan which is likely to have a fixed term – for example, 5 years) the term of your loan will be longer as a result of any periods during which you do not make repayments.

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