The average debt owed by Scots revealed
A survey from a debt advice charity has revealed that on average, Scots are having to cope with debts worth £14,167.
However, while the figures are an average, there are pockets across Scotland where families are struggling with much more debt than that.
For instance, for families with children in East Kilbride then their debt is, on average, worth £19,548.
For those families with children in central Scotland, the average debt is £13,753.
Debt advice workers in these areas say a large portion of those who are seeking help are trying to cope with credit card debt.
Families who are not coping financially
One reason for this, the organisations say, is that families who are not coping financially are now turning to using credit cards increasingly to meet their day-to-day bills and expenses. The next big issue is for Scots is repaying personal loans.
The figures for families without children also make for interesting reading and for those in debt asking for their advice in East Kilbride, then their average worth of debt is £11,797.
Another issue is that wages are not keeping pace with increasing living costs, this is being made worse with the rate of inflation outstripping wage inflation.
The debt advice charity says there’s also an issue with Scots who cannot pay their utility bills such as gas and electricity as well as their council tax and rent.
They say that over the last five years, the proportion of people in Scotland seeking help with repaying council tax arrears has risen to 47% from 27%.
People in Scotland have run out of cash
The same charity revealed recently that 51% of people in Scotland see their wages being spent before their next payday.
Worryingly, 15% of those who answered the survey said this happened ‘always’ or ‘almost all of the time’.
When they are struggling, around 23% of Scots say they’ve gone without food at least once in the last 12 months and that debt is now a fact of life for many.
Their figures also show that 48% of Scots had to borrow money or use a credit card to buy food and one in five struggles to pay their mortgage or rent.
For Scots who cannot cope financially, it is always good advice to seek help as soon as possible.
Helpful advisers at Scotland’s Trust Deed
One of the best ways is to speak with the helpful advisers at Scotland’s Trust Deed who will be able to help with advice about what potential solutions are available.
Among them is a trust deed while others may be attracted to a debt arrangement scheme.
The advantages for a trust deed is that it could see a significant portion of the unsecured debt being written off after the repayment period comes to an end.
In addition, the charges and interest on the debt will be frozen and there will be just one monthly repayment to make.
For many people, they could be completely debt free within 48 months and not be hassled or face legal action from any of their lenders.
Downsides to a trust deed
There are some downsides to a trust deed and the advisers at Scotland’s Trust Deed will explain more but they do include the debtor not including secured debts such as hire purchase repayments and mortgages in the amount being owed.
Under the terms of the trust deed, the debtor will need to declare all of their liabilities and assets and they may need to release equity in their home to help repay their lenders.
Also, the trust deed will be recorded on their credit history for six years and there are some occupations that will require prior approval before the trust deed is granted.
So, for many people living in Scotland there are several ways to resolve their debts that are only available to those who live in the country and a trust deed is one of them.
Advice about a debt arrangement scheme or a trust deed
For more help and advice about a debt arrangement scheme or a trust deed then it’s time to speak with the team of debt advisers at Scotland’s Trust Deed.
Why Scots are working to reduce their debt levels
With news that household finances in Scotland are coming under increasing pressure because of soaring prices means growing numbers of people will find it more difficult to make ends meet.
The Office for National Statistics has reported recently that due to inflationary pressure, the value of earnings for people in the UK has fallen by 0.6% over the last 12 months.
While this does not appear to be a huge amount, for those who are struggling with low or stagnant incomes means their outgoings are increasing while their income is not.
However, by making the right choices, for people living in Scotland it is possible to reduce the cost of being in debt and to get out of debt altogether.
Indeed, one savings expert at a Scottish investment provider explained that with inflation increasing to 2.9% means that for those who are seeing their wages not keeping up will be most affected.
He explained to one newspaper: “It should be no surprise that consumers are now ready to cut back on outgoings or, in rising numbers of cases, they are turning to credit for their day-to-day living costs which is becoming more expensive.”
Scottish debt advice charity
Indeed, a recent survey for a Scottish debt advice charity found that more than half of workers in Scotland run out of cash before payday.
In addition, 55% of Scots say they could not pay a bill of £100 without having to borrow the money or use their savings.
Should a larger bill land on their doormat, then even fewer Scots will be able to pay it.
With 75% of those having an unsecured debt – whether it’s in the form of bank overdrafts, personal loans or credit card balances – means a lot of us are also paying more than we need to in bank interest and charges.
One financial comparison website says people in Scotland should shop around for cheaper bank accounts and loans in a bid to save money.
The debt charity also says: “With debt in Scotland being so pervasive, we want to ensure that more people know what their rights are in relation to debts and what potential options are available for managing their finances.”
Finding out about potential debt solutions
One of the best ways of finding out about potential debt solutions is to speak with the team of experts at Scotland’s Trust Deed who will have information and advice about the route to better financial health.
For those who do not want to speak with an adviser, there is an online debt test on the website which will give an indication of the solutions available.
However, for those people in Scotland struggling with debts who do speak with one of the friendly Scotland’s Trust Deed debt advisers, then their conversation will be confidential and any help and advice offered is impartial.
Basically, for those in Scotland looking to resolve their debts then it’s good advice to seek help rather than ignoring the issue because it’s not going to go away.
While increasing numbers of Scots are struggling with debt, this looks set to get worse as inflation picks up but wages do not keep pace; for those on low incomes and for those on benefits, then their financial situation could get very much worse.
Debt advisers at Scotland’s Trust Deed
And, as mentioned previously, one of the best ways of finding out what the potential debt solutions might be available, then it is time to speak with the team of debt advisers at Scotland’s Trust Deed for more information.
Scots in debt hit new financial record
Figures released by the Bank of England reveal that consumer credit has now reached a post financial crisis record of nearly £200 billion.
The figures also mean that growing numbers of people around the country are struggling financially and are looking for ways to solve their problems.
A recent conference on the issues of personal debt in Scotland revealed there are growing concerns that rising prices and stagnating incomes means growing numbers of people will struggle.
Household budgets are coming under increasing pressure which means more and more Scots who are struggling with their money face the prospect of ending up in serious debt.
The conference heard that organisations that give money advice say the issue of debt is linked closely to that of living costs.
They say that Scots on low incomes are falling behind with paying bills such as gas and electricity as well as their council tax.
The need for impartial financial advice
They also add that the need for impartial financial advice is growing in importance.
This last point is particularly important and for those who are living in Scotland and struggling with debt there is an easy way to access impartial help and advice from experienced debt advisers.
That is to speak with the team at Scotland’s Trust Deed or they can use an online debt test on their website to find out what potential financial solutions are available.
It’s possible that the debt adviser may talk about a debt management plan which is simply a way of repaying debts at a rate the debtor can afford and not at the rate the creditors are demanding.
While a debt management plan is not legally binding, it’s important that those who undertake an arrangement maintain it so their creditors continue freezing the interest and fees on the money owed.
Also, there is no legal protection from the creditors and for those who are looking for some degree of protection then they should be looking at a trust deed or a debt arrangement scheme.
The debt arrangement scheme
There are many reasons why someone living in Scotland should take a closer interest in the debt arrangement scheme rather than a debt management plan since this will bring protection and help repay debts at a rate the debtor can afford.
There’s also a method of undertaking informal negotiations which will work like a debt management plan and will lead to an informal arrangement for the debt to be repaid but at a frequency and an amount the creditor is happy with.
The debtor will need to deal directly with creditors and it is their responsibility for implementing the arrangement.
Another issue for speaking with creditors is to discuss a full and final settlement which means the creditor will make a one-off lump sum and have the balance of that debt written off.
For many Scots struggling financially, this may be a suitable debt resolution but only if they can access a large sum of money; this could be a loan from parents, an inheritance or even a redundancy pay-out.
Potential for Scots in debt to undertake a trust deed
While the debt arrangement scheme may also be a good idea for some people, there’s also the potential for Scots in debt to undertake a trust deed.
The big difference between this and the debt arrangement scheme is that the debtor will repay what they can afford for a limited period of time.
This repayment plan will generally run for four years and the amount of money that remains at the end will be written off.
There are obvious attractions to the potential of having a debt written off but it’s important that people living in Scotland undertake expert financial advice before they make a decision or sign any agreement.
As mentioned previously, one of the best ways of doing this is to speak with the expert and impartial team of friendly debt advisers who work at Scotland’s Trust Deed for more help and information.
It’s also important to remember that the conversation will be confidential and any advice will be impartial so the person contacting Scotland’s Trust Deed for debt advice is under no obligation to follow it.
Debt and budgeting help for people in Scotland
For Scots who are struggling with their finances, there are several potential solutions to resolve debts and help for budgeting properly.
While it is easy for all of us to fall into debt arrears, there are money advice courses available to help people manage their finances more effectively.
For those who are struggling with lots of debt, then there are potential solutions in the shape of a trust deed or a debt arrangement scheme; both of these are only available to people living in Scotland.
Indeed, all of us need to budget and while it’s an important life skill, it is also something most of us are not taught.
This means that many people have to learn the hard way while others will spend many years having to service interest charges and juggling debt between credit cards.
Debts become unmanageable for thousands of Scots
According to one charity, debts become unmanageable for thousands of Scots every year and they may then need to seek help and advice.
However, most of these people are not struggling with money mismanagement but with a change in their circumstances such as illness or divorce.
The charity which conducted the survey says that the average amount of debt for the people it is helping is nearly £13,000.
They say growing numbers of Scots are putting their homes at risk and choosing insolvency when they should be considering solutions such as a debt arrangement scheme.
Under a debt arrangement scheme, someone living in Scotland will be helped with a plan for repaying that will see their debt charges being frozen and their creditors being prevented legally from making demands.
Also, more importantly, their home will be safeguarded for as long as they maintain their payments under the scheme and comply with its conditions.
Consider a debt arrangement scheme to repay debts
This growing debt problem has led the Scottish government to urge more of us to not choose insolvency and instead to consider a debt arrangement scheme to repay debts.
There’s also a need, says the charity, for more people to understand how to budget effectively which is part of a first step towards their financial well-being.
To help a growing number of Scots, the charity organises budgeting courses.
One of the big attractions for these courses is that they show people how they can manage their money more effectively with a weekly allowance and encourage them to stick with it.
In addition, it is also possible for people to save, even a little bit, when they have a budget they can to.
Steps to budget finances effectively
To help Scots, the charity has put together a few simple steps that will help them to budget their finances more effectively:
- Be honest with yourself: sit down and be realistic about your finances
- Budget balancing: decide on what you want to achieve financially and how you can get there
- Use only cash: by using cash people will spend less
- Start saving: once a financial target has been decided upon, it may be saving for a summer holiday, then begin putting small amounts aside every week or month. Avoid using credit cards.
- Do not be tempted: before going shopping, make a list and be strict by sticking to it. Avoid in-store temptations.
For more help and advice about debt and budgeting help for those who are living in Scotland, then speak with the team of debt advisers at Scotland’s Trust Deed.
Scotland’s debt arrangement scheme could help more Scots
With so many people in Scotland struggling with their debts, there are various solutions available including a debt arrangement scheme.
The Scottish government run scheme could help Scots resolve their financial problems and it has already helped thousands of others resolve their debt situation.
When someone signs up to a debt arrangement scheme, their debt fees, interest and charges will be frozen and their home is protected but they must keep up payments under the scheme.
Also, the debtor will be protected from their creditors from taking any further action.
One of the big appeals for the debt arrangement scheme is that it enables someone living in Scotland to repay what they owe over a reasonable length of time and at an affordable rate.
A debt arrangement scheme or a trust deed
It’s important that anyone considering a debt arrangement scheme, or indeed a trust deed, should seek suitable advice about all potential debt solutions that may be available.
Indeed, the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland is warning Scots to be wary of help being offered on social media platforms.
They say that the firms who advertise or offer advice on Twitter or Facebook tend not to be a registered insolvency business but are instead lead generators for other organisations.
One of the problems for Scots who follow this route is that the opportunity of undertaking a debt arrangement scheme may not be offered since the organisation may not be recognised.
This is another reason why debt advice from a reputable organisation is always an advisable route to follow.
Potential debt solutions are available for Scots
For those who need to understand what potential debt solutions are available for Scots, then there’s a team of helpful debt advisers at Scotland’s Trust Deed.
They are available to speak with every day by telephone and there’s also a simple debt test available on their website.
This test will take a few minutes to complete and will highlight what potential debt solutions may be available.
For many Scots struggling with their debts, this online check might be all the advice they need and for those who do speak with the advisers, they should be reassured that the conversation will be confidential and any advice will be impartial.
This means that for those who are calling are under no obligation to follow the advice given.
Debt is a big problem in Scotland
There’s no doubt that debt is a big problem in Scotland with around 18% of households struggling with credit card debt and one charity says the average amount of debt it’s dealing with for clients is nearly £13,000.
The charity says that debt is generally caused by a change in personal circumstances, usually through a drop in income, while others struggle with illness, divorce and separation and some people struggle to budget properly.
The charity also highlights that lots of Scots delay finding help for their debt problems because they believe they can manage alone or are simply too embarrassed to seek help.
For those who decide not to ask the debt advisers at Scotland’s Trust Deed for help, here are some rules on debt advice:
- Never pay upfront for debt advice
- Seek advice from several providers including Scotland’s Trust Deed and charities
- Ask if there are charges for their debt service
- Be wary of anyone who advertises debt advice but does not provide a solution and passes them on to another firm for a fee
For more help and advice for people living in Scotland who are worried about their debt situation and would like to enjoy impartial advice, then speak with the advisers that Scotland’s Trust Deed.