Being in debt can have a big impact on your life, as well as the lives of your family, friends, and loved ones. It can be stressful and scary, and every year, debt causes thousands of people to suffer from anxiety or depression. But it doesn’t have to be this way.
Although it’s not always easy to take that first step and seek advice, we understand that debt can happen to anyone. Our debt advisers have handled every level of debt. We’re here to listen, understand, and help you deal with personal debts.
How do I get rid of debt ASAP?
If you’re struggling with debt, whether you’re unable to pay your energy bills or your credit card has been maxed out, chances are you are looking for a way to improve your financial situation as quickly as possible.
The good news is it’s possible to solve your debt problems no matter how drastic, although it may take some time before you can successfully pay your debts in full.
By doing your research on debt help, you’ve taken the first step in your debt action plan. The next step is to seek professional debt advice.
A professional debt adviser will be able to offer you advice based on your circumstances, and guide you towards the debt solutions that suit you best. That’s where we can help.
Debt help and advice - what we offer
All of our advice is free and confidential; we offer help with a variety of debt issues, from bailiffs to budgeting, and can find you a formal solution to help you manage your debts. You can find out more about our solutions and fees by following the links below.
Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA) (England, Wales, and Northern Ireland)
With this solution, we work with the companies you owe money to and agree on a single, affordable monthly repayment. Our advisers will look into your situation to work out what you can comfortably afford to pay back.
Unlike Debt Management Plans, an IVA will normally last five years, at which point any unsecured debts left in the IVA will be written off at the end.
Trust Deed (Scotland)
Similar to an IVA in England, Wales, and Northern Ireland, a Trust Deed allows people living in Scotland with more that £5,000 of unsecured debts to repay that debt using a series of monthly payments. Once the payment term ends, usually after four years, the remaining debt is written off.
Debt Management Plan (England, Wales, and Northern Ireland)
A Debt Management Plan (DMP) is what’s known as an informal debt solution. Under this scheme, you will come to an agreement with your creditors about lowering monthly payments towards your debts.
The agreement will be negotiated with the help of an Insolvency Practitioner (IP), but as an informal solution, you won’t be given legal protection from creditors.
Debt Arrangement Scheme (Scotland)
Similar to a DMP, the Debt Arrangement Scheme (DAS) is a popular way to deal with debt problems in Scotland. A DAS allows you to make a single monthly payment into a debt payment programme, and freezes interest and charges while you repay your debts.
The agreement is managed by an approved money adviser, and it typically takes around six and a half years for an individual to clear their debts.
How we helped Michael
Absolutely fantastic professional staff understanding and non judgmental.
Fantastic service quick too! Would recommend to anyone!!"
What information do I need to provide when requesting debt help and advice?
So that we can find the best debt solution for you as quickly as possible, it helps to know your income, expenditure, and details of who you owe money to. This will help us fully gauge your situation if you have that information ready when you contact us.
If you don’t know the full details of all your debts, don’t worry – we can do a soft credit search to help you find out.
How can I find details of my debts?
For the debts that you know about, check your most recent statements to find out the balances and reference numbers. If you don’t have these to hand, you can contact companies directly and ask them what the outstanding balances are.
If you aren’t sure who your creditors are, it might be a good idea to get a copy of your credit report. Private companies will charge you for this, however this could be as little as £2 for a paper copy, or possibly free, as part of a free trial.
Companies who offer this service include:
What if I’m self-employed and need debt help?
We can still help. IVAs are ideal for self-employed people, as they allow you to continue to run your business. We aim to fit our services around your needs, so if you do run your own business, we can tailor a solution to suit those circumstances.
Can I get debt advice if I'm on benefits?
It’s possible to enter into an IVA if you’re on benefits, but you will need to have money left over every month after your outgoings to make payments. You can read our handy guide to debt and benefits here.
It’s also important to check that you’re getting all the benefits you’re entitled to. Being up to date with your entitlement will help to make sure that you’re not losing out on income, and may give you more money to live your life while repaying your debts.
If you’re unsure, try using the Government benefits calculator here.
Do I have to pay for debt advice?
While most debt management companies will charge a fee for access to formal debt solutions, you shouldn’t have to pay for simple debt advice. Below are some of the most common ways to access debt advice.
Debt charity (i.e. Citizens Advice/Money Advice Service)
A debt advice charity, or debt advice foundation, is a not-for-profit organisation that’s set up to help people deal with debt and improve your financial situation.
There are several debt charities who operate Monday to Friday and will offer you free advice and guidance on getting to grips with your debt problem.
Examples in the UK include the Money Advice Service (now Money Helper), the national debtline, and Stepchange debt charity. They may also be able to offer you free access to formal debt solutions.
Debt management company (i.e. Creditfix/Carrington Dean)
At Creditfix, and our sister company Carrington Dean, we specialise in formal debt solutions. There are fees for our services, which are from the monthly payments you make to your arrangement. If you choose to set up an arrangement with us, every discussion you have with an adviser will be in the strictest confidence.
You could also decide to pursue an alternative, less formal solution. We may not be able to set this up for you, but we can point you in the right direction, and we will never charge you just for advice on how you can improve your financial circumstances.
How does a debt solution affect your credit rating?
In short, yes – using a debt relief programme will most likely harm your credit score. How much of a knock your credit score takes, and how long the damage lasts, depends entirely on which debt solution you choose, and whether you complete it successfully.
The damage a debt solution does to your credit rating should only be temporary. Details of any debt repayment plan will stay on your credit file for six years.
During that time, you may find it difficult to access new lines of credit or open certain bank accounts. Once those six years have passed, however, details of any debt solution will be wiped from your credit file.
As long as you have maintained your monthly payments and stuck to the agreement, you will be free from the debts included in your arrangement, and ready to begin rebuilding your credit rating.
I need free debt advice now. What do I do?
Struggling with debt is never easy, and you might not know where to go for confidential debt advice. That’s where we come in. Creditfix is the UK’s biggest IVA provider, and specialises in helping people deal with serious debt.
If you’re currently dealing with a debt problem and being chased for payments, give one of our advisers a call on 0808 253 3444 for free debt help. If you don’t want to wait, you can fill in this form above so we can give you a call back, or click the button on the bottom right of your screen to start a chat.