Tag Archives: income shock

A friend in need…what to do if someone you know is in debt

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Don't let your friend suffer in silence any longer.

Don’t let your friend suffer in silence any longer.

You’ve known for a while now that someone you care about is going through a rough patch with money.

Their face is constantly tight with worry and there’s a stack of bills on their side table. You can’t have a five-minute conversation without their phone ringing, and every time it does they let out a world-weary sigh.

There could be a whole host of reasons why they’re struggling, some you may not even be aware of. Maybe they recently had their hours cut at work, or their partner walked out. Perhaps their household expenses have been creeping up in price over time (you no doubt know yourself how expensive things are these days). You want to help but don’t know how.

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“If I didn’t pay then the bailiffs would be sent”: Faye and Nick’s story

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Contrary to popular belief, most people don’t get into debt because they overspend or live beyond their means.

According to our recently released Statistics Yearbook 2014, the biggest cause of problem debt among our clients is unemployment. Just under a quarter of clients tell us it as the main reason for their debt, with a further 12.8% saying they got into debt after experiencing a drop in income.

These income shocks could happen to anyone. In May 2014, it happened to Nick and Faye* from Birmingham.

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3 final reasons why we’re Running Debt Awareness Week

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The final curtain is about to descend on Debt Awareness Week for 2014, and what have we learned?

For one thing, we’ve learned that so many people in debt are ready and willing to get the help they desperately need – all it takes is that nudge in the right direction.

The debt we’ve dealt with so far this week clocks in at over £200m, and it’s all down to people just like you deciding that enough is enough.

Reason #13

“Our lightbulb moment came via a conversation with our bank who told me to take a loan out to pay off my overdraft and credit card. It didn’t sound right so I contacted StepChange Debt Charity. It was at that point I realised what a mess we were in.”

Reason #14

going into court to fight two companies at the same time was a reality check and one of the lowest points of my life.

Reason #15

I always knew I had a debt problem and had tried to sort it out but was really putting a bandaid over a gaping wound.

When I met my fiance` and fell in love, I realised that my debt problem had massive consequences for our future. I began to see I had to pay back a lot of money and should start really trying to do that. I don’t think it had struck me before what debt really meant.

The relief of having someone to talk to and someone to negotiate with my creditors was immense. thank you.

If you relate to any of the stories above, or any of the others we’ll add during this week, use our Debt Danger Signs test to see if you need debt advice.

Client quotes obtained in debt danger signs survey, Dec 2013. Total debt reported obtained from our Helpline and Debt Remedy service, up to Thursday 23 January 2014 at midnight.

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Debt, separation and divorce

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Recently we’ve been looking at how separation and divorce can quickly lead to unmanageable debt. We’ve found that 25 Brits a day contact us with debt problems after separating from their partners.

Taking action early is the key.

  • Identify which debts you are liable for
  • Explain the sitation to your lenders
  • Seek free debt advice

If you’ve got debt problems from a divorce or separation contact us for help. And for more information, read our blogpost The stress when debt and relationships collide.

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