If you have decided to take control of your expenditure, you may get depressed when it doesn't all go to plan. Improving your finances is a journey – one that takes time and planning. And as with all journeys, there can be stops and starts along the way. Don't let these derail your plan! I'm talking in this article about a plan to clear your problem debts. This could be forced on you if you … [Read more...]
I write about a lot of Personal Finance that isn't directly about problem debts. Those articles are gathered here.
Spending - reducing or controlling it is usually essential if you want to reduce your debts. So Budgeting is another big topic.
Your grandparents used a pen and paper, but now we have Apps to make all this easier.
Mortgages - sometimes thought of as the only good sort of debt!
Credit ratings - important if you have too much debt or very little!
Cash is often the most cost-effective way to buy a car. But this isn’t always possible, especially if you have money problems. In 2018 more than 80% of new cars in Britain were bought on finance - but that doesn't mean it's going to be right for you! The four ways to finance your car a personal loan - a loan from your bank or building society to spread the cost over 1 to 7 years. Here … [Read more...]
Here is a simple way to think of your credit cards and catalogue accounts using the traffic light colours. It can give a warning signal where you may have problems in the future. If you are in difficulty with bills or debts now, it's too late for this early warning to help... have a look at your possible options and get some debt help now! Red - Amber - Green First you need to compare the … [Read more...]
A reader asked: I've got a parking ticket in a car park which isn't right because you couldn't see the signs the way I went in. I've been sent a letter saying if I don't pay they will go to court and this will then show on my credit record. My partner says she got a speeding fine and that wasn't on her credit record. Are they lying to me? To find out what will happen if you don't pay a parking … [Read more...]
I am sceptical about firms offering to improve your credit rating - too many of them are either scams or something you can easily do yourself. But Credit Improver is authorised by the FCA, any complaints about it can be considered by the Financial Ombudsman and it is offering a "guarantee" so I decided to take a look. How Credit Improver works When you sign up to Credit Improver you are buying a … [Read more...]
A couple of questions about British Gas defaults from Debt Camel readers in the last few weeks: I check my credit file monthly. I have just noticed an account that was never on there before from British Gas saying that I owe £179 from 2008. The only thing that is showing is a default issued Jan 2017. I have no recollection of this money. We didn't move from that address until 2010. What can I … [Read more...]
A reader asked: My Noddle report shows some settled debts but one is shown as satisfied. I am sure I paid them all off in full. Does it make a difference and should I ask for this to be changed? … [Read more...]
Paying your mortgage on time helps your credit score. Shouldn't paying your rent do the same? That is the idea behind Credit Ladder, where tenants renting from a private landlord can sign up to have their rent payments reported to Experian. But there are reasons why this may not be such a good idea for the tenant. This article looks at Credit Ladder in particular, read Should paying rent help … [Read more...]
Water bills - they went up £9 a month on average in April 2018 and £8 a month in April 2019. You can't change Water Companies but there are still a lot of ways you can cut your water charges. This article is looking at ways to cut your future bills. If you already have a bill that is too high for you to manage, don't ignore it, read What to do if you can't afford to pay a water bill. See … [Read more...]
Ms F asked: "I have been in debt management for five years after my marriage breakdown. After an inheritance, I want to pay off my DMP as it will carry on for years. I could pay in full but my house needs some urgent work and my car is on its last legs. I asked about my credit score if I offer a partial settlement and was told this would show as partially settled on credit score file. Will I … [Read more...]