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Debt Guide - Top Tips

Many people are being affected by job loss, repossession/foreclosure, mounting bills and increased outgoings.

Debt has proved to not only be a financial burden but a crisis. It is disrupting all aspects of life, from family and relationships to health and well-being, many people experiencing debt suffer from Anxiety as the worry of what could happen becomes a dominant thought.

Debt is not the problem but the symptom

Many people hide their debts from friends and family or sometimes even themselves, by not opening statements or not totalling their liabilities. If you can relate, it might be time to do something about it. As hard as it is to face, you can only sort your debts out if you know the scale of them. It may feel better not to know, but in the reality. it makes things worse. If debt is affecting you or your family it might help to open up about it, bottling up feelings can be harmful and add to your worries. Sharing your fears and concerns with a neutral party can provide an open platform to alleviate stress.

Free expert support for Debt

We understand that debt worries can be a huge burden. OCS wants you to feel relief and be supported.

StepChange is a free debt expert advice charity. They provide debt management help by offering confidential support, recommending the best solution for your circumstances and by campaigning on your behalf to reduce the risk of debt problems and the harm it causes. 

Top Tips to avoid and Reduce Debt

1. Learn to budget. One of the best ways to stay solvent is by learning to budget and control your spending. This is not as difficult as it sounds once you get the hang of it. With proper management, cutting back on your spending and focusing on paying off debts, you will be in a much better financial position. Try writing down incoming and outgoings, monitor them.

2. Save by switching. Cut your energy bills by changing your service provider to a cheaper one. Compare car, home and life insurance quotes for the best offer.

3. Set up an emergency fund. An emergency fund could easily mean the difference between losing your home in an economic crisis. Putting money aside regularly will give you some cushion should disaster strike. It does not matter how small the amount might be, every little bit counts in an emergency fund.

4. Pay off your debts. Bad debts should be paid off as quickly as possible. If you can’t completely pay them off, at the very least reduce them down to the point where they can easily be managed. As a bonus, you may also be helping your credit score by reducing the amount of debt you have. Seek help from support services that are set up to advise those in a financial crisis.

5. Diversify. One of the best ways to stay economically stable at any time is to diversify. For example, if you are relying on one wage for your entire income, it’s time to think about setting up alternative, legal forms of income.

6. Start downsizing. If you’ve got two cars and don’t need them both, consider selling one and the money made from the sale could be put into an emergency fund. By cutting back strategically, you’ll have more money to keep current on your bills.

7. Get help. Free financial advice is available, ensure that you use a recognised support service. You can start by contacting your local Citizens Advice Bureau, they can point you in the right direction.

For information about housing, benefits and debt visit The Citizens Advice Service. 
For advice and help to improve your finances, visit the UK Government founded organisation The Money Advice Service