Debt Help & Advice

Debt Action Plan

The Debt Checklist & Action Plan

 

Stage 1:

 

Not too much debt and you’re managing the repayments easily. Extra money each month goes to pay off the outstanding capital.

 

Credit score is looking good.

 

 

 

1.      Congratulate yourself on getting this sorted out now; if you were to leave it, these things can quickly spiral out of control.

2.      Check your credit score – make sure that all the information they hold about you is correct, you might have to get these things fixed before you move on.

3.      Make a clear record of how much you owe and what the interest rates are.

4.      See if you can get some 0% credit cards and use the FREE excel tracker together with some FREE online calculators to see how this will affect your overall debt.

5.      If you can’t switch your debts (either all or part of them) onto lower rate cards, pay as much as you can off the higher interest rate debts (use FREE online repayment calculators to see how this will benefit you long term)

6.      Do NOT jump into a consolidation loan or re-mortgage until you’ve exhausted the cheaper alternatives

7.      If you want to pay off debts even sooner, look at selling some unwanted items through eBay, amazon marketplace, Craigs list, facebook etc. Even downgrading your car or house might be an option if you are seriously committed!

8.      Reduce your outgoings by getting better deals on your household bills and regular spend items (Look at TopCashBack, Earny, Quidco, Shop at Home, to name but a few!)

9.      Start tracking your spend with a simple spreadsheet or use one of the many FREE apps available for this purpose.

10.  Check your insurances!

Stage 2:

 

A bit too much Debt but you’re still managing to make the minimum repayments. Paying off any larger sums is becoming more challenging though.

Credit score has gone down a few points

 

 

11.  Don’t worry, you can do this!

12.  Check your credit score AGAIN! – make sure that all the information they hold about you is correct and that they have made changes that you asked for (if any)

13.  Make a clear record of how much you owe and keep it up to date, make a note of all the interest rates.

14.  See if you can get some 0% or lower % cards or loans and use the FREE excel tracker together with some FREE online calculators to see how this will affect your overall debt.

15.  Making use of some FREE budget apps might also help you track your spend, especially helpful if you know this is a big issue for you.

16.  If you can’t switch your debts (either all or part of them) onto lower rate cards, pay as much as you can off the higher interest rate debts – look at DIY debt consolidation

17.  If you can’t see the situation improving in the near future, it might be time to start looking at a consolidation loan or re-mortgage if you are sure you’ve exhausted the cheaper alternatives. This option could be especially helpful if your main focus is to reduce your monthly outgoings on debt payments and are happy to pay a little more in interest to get this advantage.

18.  There are organisations out there that can get you Help to pay rent, which might be worth taking a look at.

 

Stage 3:

 

It’s gone past manageable and it’s getting worse every month, you’re starting to miss payments and are getting really worried.

 

Credit score is poor

 

19.  If you are really starting to NEED your debts paid off faster, maybe to look at selling some unwanted items through eBay, amazon marketplace, Craigs List, Facebook etc. Even downgrading your car or house might be an option if you are seriously committed!

20.  A re-mortgage or consolidation might be an option for you but do consider that as a mortgage is paid over the longer term, the traditionally lower interest rate has much more time to compound and has the potential to add up to quite a substantial sum.

21.  Double check all your outgoings. Look at using an app like Cleo that pulls all your spend into the app and shows you where it’s all going, as well as providing you with a trackable budget, this could be quite and eye opener!

22.  Check that you’re getting the best deal for all your usual spend like your utilities, phones, insurances, broadband, food etc. Make sure you are not paying for anything you don’t need. This is especially true with insurances. Life changes and you might be paying for cover that’s no longer relevant to you. Don’t forget to get extra back through cashback sites too!

23.  Debt Relief Manual

24.  Don’t forget, you can get Help to pay rent too.

 

Stage 4: OK so I think I’m in trouble now, I need help…. FAST!

 

Credit score is **!?*!

 

 

25.  Do not panic. Give yourself a pat on the back for facing up to this, you can do it!

26.  Take this slowly and methodically, you probably didn’t get here overnight so it might take a bit of time to get out of it, just one day at a time, one thing at a time………you will get there.

27.  Follow all the steps from the previous sections & look at opportunities to consolidate your debts into one place. If this isn’t getting you anywhere or you feel that you’ve exhausted all your options; then maybe it’s time for you to get in touch with a debt help organisation. It may even be worth contacting a specialist solicitor and getting advice on the various forms of insolvency or debt relief orders.

28.  If you are being hounded by creditors, there is a chance you are being pursued illegally, check out “what lies in your debt” to see if there is a chance you could turn this around and MAKE money from your situation!

29.  Whilst bankruptcy or a debt relief order is definitely NOT something you should take lightly it could be the best solution for you at this moment in time so gather the information and make an informed decision.

30.  Help to pay rent

AT ANY STAGE, if it’s all too much & you just can’t cope!  

If you are completely overwhelmed with it all and really can’t face dealing with it, that’s totally fine, but for your own health and wellbeing, and to enable you to fix your situation, you probably do need to address why you feel this way about money and possibly look at how your feelings about money and debt could have contributed to your current situation.

 

Money is still very much a taboo subject in most cultures so it often helps to speak to someone impartial that will not judge you but instead provide you will strategies to cope with your feelings around money and help you to help yourself create a better future.

 

Please do not despair, it’s just money and it can be fixed. Take care of yourself and take the process of sorting out your debts one step at a time. Don’t beat yourself up, just take each day as it comes, you will get there!

 

 

 

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