The Money Advice Service believes that 8.3 million adults have problem debt. In some UK regions problem debt affects 1 in every 6 adult residents.
This problem applies if you find paying your bills and credit a heavy burden. It also applies if you've missed payments in at least three of the last six months.
Fewer than 1 in 5 adults with problem debt have taken debt advice.
Debt advisers find ways to better manage your money. This reduces debt pressure and worry.
They may help you to budget better, so that you feel in control. They may help you to increase you income, perhaps from unclaimed benefits. They may suggest that you enter a debt solution, to manage your debts for you.
Debt advisers help with all sorts of debts.
Advisers help people with consumer credit debts. This includes credit cards and store cards. It includes bank loans, overdrafts, catalogue debts, and payday loans.
They help with arrears on bills. This includes council tax, gas, electric, water, and phone bills for example.
Advisers can help you to focus on paying your secured debts. This includes mortgages and car finance. You can reduce the risk of losing your home or car.
They can help you to deal with debts that have been through the Courts.
The adviser goes through a process with your help. They ask for detail on your income, bills, and other costs. They ask for detail on all of your debts. They'll ask about any assets that you own.
These details help the adviser to pinpoint ways to make things better.
They may show you ways to cut your costs, or to increase your income. They may explain which bills you should focus on first. They may suggest that you enter into a certain debt solution.
You have a choice of debt advice services to help you.
Firms like Bright Oak provide advice by phone. We can show you ways to manage your debts better. We can provide (or refer you to) suitable debt solutions if they will help. We work with people who live in all parts of the UK.
Several national free-to-client debt advice services exist. You can access them by calling the Money Advice Service.
Local advice services are available. They may provide face-to-face advice, which can be useful. Citizens Advice is the best known. You can access local services by first calling the Money Advice Service.