TAKING THE FIRST STEP
You’ve taken the first step – which is starting looking at what debt advice is out there there! Before you go any further, get prepared! If you are ready with everything you need you are likely to get the correct advice, first time and minimise the number of calls or visits made to your debt advice provider.
Step by Step guide to getting ready for Debt Advice
Work out what you owe:
Collect letters or statements from each company you owe money to including name, reference, balance and contract information the better.
Cant find or remember who you owe money to
? This is not unusual or reason to panic, Often creditors employ or sell the debt on to debt collection agencies, where payments have been missed, It can mean you get confused about who you owe what to and why another company is writing to you! We would recommend a credit search to get the most accurate information on the number of companies you owe to. what the most recent balances are and also if any legal action has been taken against you. Follow this link to learn more about credit reference agencies and searches . You can access a credit reference agency via this link also, or we can look at completing a credit check for you. https://ico.org.uk/your-data-matters/credit/
What can you afford to pay? To access the advice on which debts solutions are likely to be suitable, a debt advisor will need to establish what is affordable for you on a regular basis. If you have online banking it would be useful to print a copy, or make notes on what you pay out for and how often,
- Include household bills like a mortgage / rent, council tax & utilities, housekeeping, work lunches and weekend dining sports, hobbies and entertainment and anything else which is a financial commitment.
- Make notes on how frequently you pay them: Weekly, Monthly?, Four weekly, Quarterly? Annually or any other frequency?
- Where you are behind with any of these commitment make note of the balance of the arrears if known.
- Make note of how your household manages the bills, who pays for what? How is it paid and where from?
- Are there things you want to cancel or things you want or need to start paying for?