Do you get that same feeling every payday? You have been working all the hours God sends, yet barely making ends meet. Wages arrive in your bank account and you wince as you see the figures diminish as your rent, electricity bills, credit card bills and standing orders are snatched out. You watch in dismay as the pounds fall into the red.
It can be depressing to think that you have no spare cash to enjoy yourself. At some point maybe you missed a payment on your credit card, things escalated and the charges quickly mounted up leaving you wondering how you could make ends meet.
Studies have shown that debt can contribute to high blood pressure and that’s not only the only physical effect it can have on your body. A lot of people lie in bed at night, racked with anxiety over their financial situation.
Facing up to the Problem is the First Step
If you bury your head in the sand, things will only escalate. Debtors will not just disappear because you have stopped opening letters, all the while the charges will be mounting up. The first step is to be brave and accept your situation.
Look at changing your lifestyle. You may think smoking is helping you when you feel stressed but it is quite the opposite, and the money that you could save from cigarettes could contribute to your weekly budget. If you smoke ten cigarettes a day then you could save yourself around £30 a week!
Could you walk or cycle to work? This is not only an excellent health benefit, but it can reduce your travel costs dramatically.
Start by filling out a budget sheet, this will allow you to see the reality of your financial situation. Once you know what you are dealing with you can think about the best way to move forwards.
Consider All Options
You could speak to your local Citizens Advice bureau and see what options are available.
For those with severe debt, you may want to consider bankruptcy. Being free of your debt can certainly seem like the perfect solution, but there can be quite a few downfalls. You will have bad credit against your name, you may have to make repayments and it can cost up to £700 for the order.
Another option is to go for an Individual Voluntary Arrangement whereby you deal with a licensed insolvency practitioner; they review your financial situation and contact your debtors on your behalf. A meeting is held to arrange repayments per month to creditors; another benefit of this is that your interests will be frozen. This is a good alternative for those who do not want to go bankrupt, although this option will still affect your credit rating.