Debt Advice

If you are reading this then you possibly have a few debts that either could be or are getting out of control so you may need some help with debt. Help is available from a variety of sources some of whom we mention below. Do bear in mind that it is important that you get some impartial good debt advice that is tailor made for you.

Firstly, let’s have a look at a few things relating to debt.

What is debt?

Quite simply, a debt is where you owe someone money. Some examples of debt are a mortgage, loan, credit card or overdraft.

How do you get into debt?

It is when you spend money that you don’t actually have in your pocket or bank account.

For instance, you may wish to buy a car but do not have the savings to purchase it outright so approach your bank for a personal loan which you then repay over a number of years.

You may have obtained a credit card and used it to buy Christmas presents or pay for a holiday. Hopefully, you will be able to clear the balance outstanding quickly from income but this is not always the case.

You could also get into debt as a result of loosing your job and using your overdraft facility with the bank or your credit card to meet some of your household expenditure that would normally have come out of your salary.

When do you need help with debt?

Before it becomes a problem.

This tends to be when you are no longer in a position to meet your regular outgoings such as being unable to pay off your liabilities within the agreed repayment arrangements.

If you are struggling financially then debt help is available from a number of sources

Help with debt is available from a variety of organisations

For instance, you may have used your credit card excessively, building up a significant debt to the extent that you have reached your credit card’s limit. Perhaps through becoming unemployed, you are unable to meet the minimum monthly repayment so then go above your credit card limit. The credit card company provides information about the unsatisfactory conduct of your credit card to the credit reference agencies and it remains on your credit file for many years. You now find yourself with an adverse credit rating thus, potentially, affecting your ability to get credit for quite some time to come.

You could go into arrears with your mortgage, rent, council tax, electric or gas bills through having an illness that prevents you from working thus reducing your income to a point that you are unable to meet your expenditure and require help with your debts.

You may have exceeded your overdraft facility with your bank and they start to return direct debits unpaid. Your relationship with the bank could reach a point where they ask you to make alternative banking arrangements. Your bad credit rating may adversely affect your ability to get a standard current account with one of the other major high street banks or building societies. Do not despair because there are current accounts for bad credit rated people available where no credit reference search is made although there is usually a monthly charge payable for such an account.

Where can you get debt help?

If you feel that you are unable to manage your debts yourself through, for instance, adjusting your expenditure in some way or to come to an arrangement with those you owe money to yourself then you should seriously consider seeking outside help. Do not try to ignore the situation that you are in as it may get worse.

There are a number of debt management companies that charge fees to provide help with sorting out your debts.

There are a number of organizations that provide free debt management advice that you could contact such as: –

Citizens Advice Bureau

StepChange Debt Charity

National Debtline

What sort of debt help can they provide?

• They may be able to contact those that you owe money to and arrange to have the interest/charges frozen to ensure the level of debt does not increase and agree an affordable repayment program.
• They may be able to help you set up a Debt Management Plan with your creditors.
• They may be able to assist in sorting out a Debt Relief Order (DRO), Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA) or bankruptcy.

So, as you can see, there is a lot of debt advice available to you. If you feel that you are unable to deal with your debt problems yourself do get some debt help sooner rather than later. You will not be alone in seeking such assistance as thousands of people do so each year.