Homelessness Set to Rise as Debts Build Up

Published on 1 January 1970 by Raffick Marday

The number of people becoming homeless because of debt and money problems is likely to rise in the coming months following planned public sector job cuts and benefit changes.

The Consumer Credit Counselling Service (CCCS) said while people are not living on the streets due to their financial situation they are turning to friends or family and sleeping on their sofas.

The debt charity has counselled almost 15,000 people with mortgage arrears and 6,820 with rental arrears already this year.

They say some of these people have opted to rent out their property to fund repayments of their debts while staying with someone they know.

If your monthly income is struggling to cover rent or mortgage payments a prepaid debit card could help you budget your outgoings.

“Loss of home is often the greatest fear for those struggling with debt,” said Laura Carver, CCCS head of helpline.

“Sleeping on a friend’s sofa is better than sleeping outside but it means that you still don’t have a home.”

How to Manage Debt

While there are many different debt management plans and debt consolidation loans available on the market they tend to come at a price with high interest rates attached.

If you have a regular income and are able to meet repayments with a bit of strict budgeting try using a prepaid debt card to prevent further overspending.

These work by enabling a card user to preload their budgeted amount for everyday items onto the card and use as they would a debit or credit card.

In addition to the ability to track and monitor spending with the online facility, a prepaid card does not allow the user to spend more than is on it, so it is impossible to become overdrawn or get into further debt.

Most cards can be purchased for a small fee of up to £10 but this is sometimes refunded once initial funds are loaded, and anyone can purchase a card even if they have bad credit history.

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