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Tackling your debts

How many of us ignore our bills?

Posted 26 April 2013

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Ignoring a problem doesn't make it go away, but we found that more than one in ten people are ignoring their bank statements and bills.

If you've ever ignored a bill or bank statement then you're not alone. Research by Debt Advisory Centre found that 12% of people surveyed this month said they don't always open their bills or financial statements either.

Ignoring your bills and bank statements can be a recipe for disaster, especially if there's something important in them that you need to address. 12% of people ignored their bills or bank statements. That's the equivalent of 6 million people who could be taking risks with their finances.

We wanted to raise awareness of the issue because we know that people often ignore their post when they're having debt problems.

If you or someone you know needs debt help, you can contact our team directly.

"I'll look at it later"

Lots of people are complacent about their bills and financial statements. One in four (25% of) people we surveyed said they put their bills on a pile to read later - only to forget. And 59% have a good idea of what will be in their bills anyway so choose to ignore them.

"I'd rather not know"

But worryingly, 28% of people ignore their bills because they "never contain good news". If you can't face opening your bank statement, it's not a good sign. If you think you might need a little help to manage your finances, then we are here to help.

"Out of sight, out of mind"

You might be saving the planet if you switch to online bills, but over one in four respondents (28%) said they find their online bills and emails statements much easier to ignore than the post.

Of the people who don't open their post, 9% ignore bank statements, 6% ignore utilities bills, 6% ignore credit card bills and 5% ignore letters about taxes or benefits.

Lots of people who come to Debt Advisory Centre with debt problems have stopped reading their post. But ignoring your post doesn't make the problem go away.

The best thing you can do if you're having debt problems is face it head on, read your bills, find out what the problem is - and get help before it's too late.

by Kyri Levendi

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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.