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There are a number of options for Scots to clear their debts, whether they are struggling to maintain loan repayments or have other financial commitments.

The first thing to realise is that you are not struggling alone and the amount of indebtedness for Scots is growing all the time with people finding it harder to repay credit cards, bank loans and their council tax bills.

However, the first and most important step that you must take in order to clear your debts is to get independent and free expert debt advice.

There are a number of charities offering this service but also the Scotland’s Trust Deed team of debt advisers can offer impartial and confidential advice regardless of your debt situation.

It’s also important that you do not pay for debt advice and there will be organisations insisting that you must do so.

The most important aspect when speaking with a debt adviser is that they will help you decide which path to better financial stability is the one most suitable for you so you can clear and manage your debts effectively.

Stop struggling to repay debts

The aim is for you to get back on track and stop struggling to repay debts.

For people living in Scotland, there are lots of potential debt solutions and the best one will depend on your own circumstances.

It may be that after speaking with a debt adviser that you believe that the best solution is to come to an informal arrangement with your creditors, that’s who you owe money to, to make payments easier that are based on your essential household bills that must be met.

For those Scots struggling with debt, there is the debt arrangement scheme which is a debt management solution for you to repay what you owe over a longer period of time and at a rate you can afford.

The big attraction for a debt arrangement scheme is that you are protected from creditors who will no longer be able to hassle you to recover their money.

The criteria for applying for the scheme includes having one or more debts, living in Scotland and applying for the scheme using an approved money adviser.

The potential of a debt management plan

There’s also the potential of a debt management plan which is arrangement created between your creditors and yourself when you agree to pay back what you can afford on your non-priority debts.

These are the debts that are not secured against your home or property.

The plan will set out a timetable for repayment and an agreed amount. One of the attractions for people living in Scotland who are struggling with debts is that they simply make one monthly payment to a debt management company who will then share out the money between your creditors.

There’s also the option of a trust deed which is a voluntary arrangement between you and your creditors that will see you repay part of what you owe.

These arrangements can last up to four years but generally last three years and will see you making a monthly payment against your unsecured debts.

Attraction for a trust deed for Scots

The attraction for a trust deed for Scots is that once the arrangement period ends, the remaining debt is then written off.

Also, creditors cannot add interest to the money owed and they must stop taking action to recover their money.

Again, there’s a criteria for applying for a trust deed which include having unsecured debts such as bank loans and overdrafts and also credit cards. You must also have an excess income so you can pay down your debts or have assets that can be sold.

People struggling with debts in Scotland also have the opportunity of sequestration or bankruptcy as it is better known. It’s best to take advice before contemplating sequestration.

For Scots: The potential debt solutions

For some Scots, the potential debt solutions that are available make sound confusing but the friendly team at Scotland’s Trust Deed will be able to explain which of these routes may be the best solution and their advice is confidential and impartial; you do not have to follow what they recommend.

On the Scotland’s Trust Deed website there is a debt calculator that will also help pinpoint a potential solution that may be suitable.

If you would like to speak with a debt adviser in confidence then contact Scotland’s Trust Deed as soon as possible.