Preparing for debt advice
To make sure the advice and solutions we offer are correct and tailored to your situation, we need to know more about your financial situation.
Our online debt advice tool guides you through everything we need in around 20 minutes. If you need more time you can save your progress and complete it later.
If you'd prefer to get advice over the phone, we recommend gathering information about your finances, including income, outgoings and debts, before you call us and having them to hand.
We recommend collecting details about your living costs and the amount you pay towards any arrears, for costs like:
- Housing and utility bills
- Household services
- Food and housekeeping
- Living expenses
You can put these details together in a useful form. Find out more about what to include in an income and expenditure form and download a budget template to help you get that information together.
Then collect information about your income (including benefits, pensions and tax credits), and details of your debts.
If you know who you owe money to, you can contact creditors for up-to-date debt balances. If you're unsure, you can get a copy of your credit report from one of three credit reference agencies:
These are private companies that hold details about your debts and credit history. Most of these companies offer a free service or a trial, but you can also request a paper copy of your credit file for £2 each.
If your debts aren't on your credit file, there are other ways you can find out who you owe money to.
If you’re self-employed, living in England, Wales or Scotland and looking for help with your debts, please contact Business Debtline.
They offer specialist help to the self-employed, including advice on tax implications, court proceedings and business liabilities. They’ll also be able to help with any personal debts.
Call them on 0800 197 6026. They’re open Monday to Friday 9am to 8pm.
If you live in Northern Ireland, please contact Advice NI who offer free and impartial advice for Sole Traders, Partnerships and Limited Companies.
You can call them on 0800 0838 018, Monday to Friday 9.30am to 5.30pm.
We understand that most people will want a debt solution that will mean staying in their home. There are several debt solutions that won't affect assets such as your home and any equity it may have.
If you're insolvent and can't afford to repay your debts in a reasonable time, some of the debt solutions available might require you to sell your home, remortgage or release some of the equity, depending on your individual situation.
However, during your debt advice session you'll be told about the risks associated with each available debt solution, so you can make an informed choice that's right for your situation.