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If you feel so worried about money that you can’t see a way out and want to talk to someone urgently, you can call the Samaritans 24 hours a day, 7 days a week on 116 123 (UK) or visit their website: www.samaritans.org.
Otherwise, if you are worried about problems with debt, we strongly recommend you consult one of the national organisations offering free debt advice:
StepChange Debt Charity
StepChange Debt Charity is a national organisation that has been helping people to become debt free for over 20 years. Their advice is impartial and confidential and they provide a range of services including free debt management, help with CCJs and bailiffs.
For more information on how StepChange can help you, take their debt test today, visit their website: www.stepchange.org or call 0800 138 1111 (you can also request a call back via the website).
Payplan are a debt management company providing free debt advice and free debt solutions for anyone experiencing financial difficulties, whatever the circumstance or situation. Since 1992, Payplan has successfully helped more than a million people deal with their debt problems. Every year, they help, advise, support and provide solutions to more than 100,000 people for free. Call them on 0800 280 2816 or visit their website: www.payplan.com.
National Debtline offers free, independent and confidential advice on dealing with your debts. Visit the website: www.nationaldebtline.org or call 0808 808 4000.
Business Debtline helps the self-employed and small businesses deal with their debts, offering free, independent and confidential advice. Visit their website: www.businessdebtline.org or call 0800 197 6026.
Other helpful links:
Your local Citizens’ Advice Bureau (CAB) can also provide help on financial issues, as well as other problems which may be at the route of the problem, such as employment rights, housing and benefits. Their website contains factsheets and information or details of your local branch - www.citizensadvice.org.uk.
We often suggest people visit the Debt Camel site - a clear, easy to follow money blog run by a CAB adviser. It has articles on common debt problems and solutions, checking and improving your credit report (including a comprehensive guide to getting your credit report for free) and many more issues, as well as a round up of financial sector news.
Money A+E is another useful site with lots of useful information and links to other websites.
We also like Money Saving Expert (MSE), set up by consumer champion, Martin Lewis. It has comparison guides, money saving tips and extensive forums, where there are motivational challenges and loads of advice on hundreds of topics.
We suggest The Money Advice Service if you wish to undertake a thorough health check on your finances online.
Important: There are many commercial debt management companies operating, who will negotiate with those to whom you owe money. Although these companies claim to offer a “free” service, what they really do it to take a fee from the money you give them to pay those you owe. In the long run therefore, you end up paying more. For this reason we strongly advise against the use of commercial debt management companies.
Likewise, there are many commercial 'credit fixing' companies. Again, there is nothing provided that you couldn't do yourself for free.