Debt – How to get out of debt

Debt – How to get out of debt

In the last few weeks we have heard more and more about how the economy is getting better and stronger, unemployment is going down and inflation is now at a four year low of 1.7%.

But the fact still remains that the cost of living is continuing to go up whilst real wages are going down, which means that our pockets are being squeezed.

One thing I am still seeing on a regular basis, despite the improving economy, is that many people are struggling with debt and maintaining repayments.

Take a look at some of these alarming figures from the Money Charity:

  • £54,476 is the current average household debt (including mortgages)
  • £10.6 million of loans are written-off daily by UK Banks and Building Societies
  • Every 18 min 11 sec a property is repossessed
  • Every 5 min 25 sec someone is declared insolvent or bankrupt
  • Outstanding personal debt stands at £1.439 trillion!
  • 1,537 Consumer County Court Judgements (CCJs) are issued every day
  • Citizens Advice Bureaux (CAB) in England and Wales dealt with 7,015 new debt problems every working day
  • It costs an average of £29.65 per day to raise a child from birth to the age of 21
  • A new car in the £13,000 – £18,000 price bracket travelling 10,000 miles per year costs £16.23 per day to run

When you look at these figures it seems hardly surprising that many people are struggling with huge debts that they can’t pay.

However, there are things you can do to ease the problem:

  1. Don’t ignore the problem. The bad old days of bailiffs coming straight to your door have gone. If you have a loan or credit card agreement with your bank which isn’t secured on your home, you are protected by rules laid out by the Lending Standards Board. These rules mean that banks can’t take what you don’t have and they now have a duty of care to ensure that your repayments are affordable and fair.
  2. If you are behind on your rent or mortgage, talk to your landlord or lender immediately and agree a plan for repaying the arrears. If you don’t, you could lose your home, although most lenders have plans in place to help people who are struggling. The last thing the bank wants to do is repossess your home.
  3. Reach out to one of the FREE money advice services such as Step Change or the Money Advice Service. There are some great services out there that can help you with advice and will even talk to all of your creditors on your behalf in order to negotiate an affordable repayment plan.

Post courtesy of Express.