Are you struggling with debt?

We are debt counsellors and we help people find the right solution to tackle their debt and get them back in control of their finances. The Coronavirus is destructive and it has tested us emotionally, socially and financially.

By now property owners should be well aware of the ‘three-month holiday option’ on their mortgage but what about things like renting a property, car finance or payday loans?

Renting a property

If you’ll struggle to pay rent during the coronavirus outbreak you should speak to your landlord as soon as possible to let them know your situation and work out a repayment plan. Government guidance is “encouraging tenants and landlords to work together to put in place a rent payment scheme”. Read more…

Car finance

Borrowers with car finance plans are set to be helped with three-month payment holidays. The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) said lenders will have to offer payment holidays and other measures to help customers as from Monday 27th April. Read more…

Payday loans & buy now pay later help

The FCA which regulates the lending industry, brought in help for loan and credit card customers last week, saying that lenders need to offer payment holidays where customers were struggling to pay. Read more…

Overdrafts

Banks must give up to the first £500 of a customer’s overdraft interest-free for three months to customers struggling financially. You can ask your bank to make the first £500 of your overdraft interest-free for at least three months. If your overdraft limit is less than £500, your bank must give you your whole overdraft interest-free. Read more…

IVA payment plans

Since the 20th April, new guidance from the Insolvency Service has meant that people with IVAs (Individual Voluntary Arrangements) have more options and flexibility if they are in financial difficulty as a result of coronavirus, for example, if they’ve had a reduction in income or an increase in expenses. Read more…

And there’s more…

Are you struggling to stay on top of your finances?

When it comes to debt, you can’t ignore the problem. You should make contact with a debt help company for expert advice and guidance, check that the company is registered with the FCA.

By getting advice from an authorised debt help company gives you peace of mind that they have met the standards set by the FCA (who are the same regulator for Banks and most other financial firms in the UK). If you deal with an unauthorised firm you will not be covered by the Financial Ombudsman Service or the Financial Service Compensation Scheme if things go wrong.

Here are some things to look out for:-

  • Are they offering or suggesting only one product?
  • Are they promising to write off a very high amount of debt for all customers
  • Do they have a complaints policy?
  • Do they show their registered business address?
  • Do they have a data protection registration number so they can handle data?
  • Are there reviews collected by a reputable third party from genuine customers?
  • Is their website secure?  Secure websites show a padlock in the address bar like above

Here are some questions that you should ask a debt help company when you make contact:

  • Are you registered with the FCA?
  • What fees do you charge for your service?
  • Can you explain to me the different debt help options that are available?
  • What debt arrangements can be made?
  • What do you think is the best debt management plan for me?
  • What is an IVA?
  • What legal protection from creditors can I get?
  • How can I have the interest and charges frozen?
  • What is a protected trust deed? (for residents of Scotland)
  • What is a minimal assets process? (for residents of Scotland)
  • What is a debt relief order? Can action can be taken against me if I can’t pay my bills?
  • Do your debt solutions cover all types of debt?
  • What advice can you give me regarding guarantor loans?
  • Will the debt solution affect my job?
  • For homeowners,  how will the debt solution affect my property?
  • Do I have to sell my car?
  • If the company that you are talking to can’t answer these questions, we strongly advise you don’t proceed using their services.

A debt advisor will most probably ask you some of the following questions:

What type of debts do you have?

  • Mortgage
  • Rent
  • Store cards
  • Car finance
  • Loans
  • Household bills
  • How much do you owe and what are your financial capabilities?
  • How are you coping? If things are getting on top of you, there is help out there. Contact the Samaritans and talk to someone.

How can we help you? We are registered and authorised with the FCA and the FCA have their own consumer helpline so you can call them to check, call 08001116768.

If you have concerns about your debts at this worrying time, contact us today.

 

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