Charity Warns Families Will Take Years To Repay Christmas Debt

A debt advice charity is warning that money borrowed to pay for Christmas will take some families years to repay.

StepChange said that worries about debt have led to a surge in enquiries post-Christmas.

According to the BBC:

Its warning comes as a poll for the BBC suggests fears over unmanageable debt.

A third of respondents to the poll who used credit to help get through Christmas and the holiday season said they were not confident about their ability to repay.

StepChange said it had advised more people on 3 January, the first working day after the festive break, than on any day last year.

“Christmas can put great financial pressure on people, causing some to rely on credit and spend more than they can afford.

In some cases, this can lead to a debt hangover in the new year that may take many months or even years to repay,” said Richard Lane, from StepChange.

He said many people were unable to adjust their spending habits or have a sufficient income as bills and prices soared, and he urged those struggling not to “suffer in silence”.

“While there are some promising suggestions that inflation may begin to ease later this year, it is likely that there will be some challenging months ahead financially, and the risk of falling into problem debt remains high,” he said.

The government has promised support payments to those most in need.

The online poll of 4,187 UK adults by Savanta Comres for BBC News, Morning Live and Rip Off Britain was carried out on 4-6 January. It found that more than eight in 10 of those asked were worried about the rising cost of living, with some losing sleep over it.

But it suggests people are finding different ways to cut costs to pay their bills. A majority of respondents have been turning the heating down and lights off, or reducing their grocery shop.

That is also the case for Natasha Miller and her mum Linda, who spoke to BBC News as they took six-month-old Lana and two-year-old Penny to a free story and rhyme session in Garforth, Leeds.

“We try not to bath the girls every night, that’s the big one,” Natasha said.

Linda added: “Week by week, with food prices, we’ve tried to budget, to only buy the things we need and not waste as much. We switch off the lights, and we keep the temperature at 16C to 18C in the house. We’re conscious of what we’re using.

“Normally we buy each other presents but we did a Secret Santa this year so we weren’t buying for everyone.”

The poll for the BBC shows half those asked paid for at least some of their Christmas and holiday season spending on credit, and many would have received credit card bills in recent days.

Many turn to credit at expensive times of year because they have little in savings. A quarter of UK adults have less than £100 set aside in savings, a recent survey by the Money and Pensions Service suggested, leaving people vulnerable to rising and unexpected bills.

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of
1 Comment
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Listen LIVE!

The Richie Allen Radio Show is live Mon – Thurs  5-7pm and Sun 11am -12pm

Click the button to listen live. Stream opens in a new tab.


Support the show!

The Richie Allen Show relies on the support of the listeners.  Click the button to learn more.
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x

The Richie Allen Show relies on the support of the listeners. Help Richie to keep producing the show and talking about that which the mainstream media won’t. Please consider a contribution or becoming a Patron, it’s greatly appreciated. Thank you!

Halifax Manchester SORT CODE 11-05-16 ACC No 12130860

New Report