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Tackling your debts

Are you putting yourself at risk of debt problems?

Posted 25 October 2012 by Emily Bancroft

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People all over the UK are at risk of debt problems in the current climate, but there are steps you could take to avoid them - or stop them getting worse.

People fall into debt problems for all kinds of reasons. Suffering a drop in income, taking time off work due to illness, facing an unexpected bill, or gradually taking on more debt than you can realistically afford: these are just some of the things that could turn debts into problem debts.

New research from MoneySupermarket.com indicates that an increasing number of the younger generation could be putting themselves at risk of debt problems - as a result of borrowing money on expensive forms of credit over the last 12 months.

More than one in ten people (11%) in the 18-34 age group said they've had to use a credit card to withdraw cash - in contrast with 8% of UK residents in general. Furthermore, 7% of these people admitted to taking out a payday loan (almost double the 4% UK average) and 15% had borrowed money on an unauthorised overdraft (only 7% of UK residents have done this).

In the current climate, when many people are getting by from month to month on strict budgets, borrowing a bit of extra money to make ends meet can be useful. You can click here for more help with your money.

However, with unsecured debts such as credit cards and payday loans often carrying high rates of interest and substantial charges for non/late repayment, many younger people could be running the risk of serious debt problems if they don't repay what they owe in full as quickly as they expected to.

Avoiding debt problems: what to look out for


Here at Debt Advisory Centre Scotland, we have the know-how and expertise to help struggling borrowers find a suitable way of dealing with their debts. People contact us every day looking for an answer to their debt problems - and we pride ourselves on giving them expert advice.

If you have outstanding debts, there are a few signs to look out for that could indicate your debts are - or are likely to become - a problem:

• You're regularly borrowing more money to keep up with your debts
• You're running out of money before the end of the month
• You're paying your household bills late
• You're struggling to keep track of your debts.

If any of these points sound familiar, you could be on the road to debt problems. However, the good news is: the earlier you take action, the easier it could be to get the problem under control - and with our range of debt solutions, we could help you.

Can you no longer afford your debts?
If you can no longer afford to repay your debts as they stand, you don't have to face the problem alone.

If you can still afford reduced monthly payments to your unsecured debts, we could talk to your lenders about agreeing a debt management plan - an informal arrangement that would help you repay your debts at a pace you can afford.

Although making smaller payments could be more expensive in the long run - and will affect your credit rating for six years - starting to repay your debts at a manageable pace could be the first step towards a more secure financial future.

You could request a free call-back to find out how we could help you manage your debts.

by Emily Bancroft

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To find out more about managing your money and getting free debt advice, visit Money Advice Service, an independent service set up to help people manage their money.