Borrowing can be tempting when money is tight. However it can create bigger money problems if you can’t pay it back or don’t deal with your debt straight away.

If you have a debt problem, deal with it and don’t ignore it. Debt problems will not just go away and will get worse if they are ignored. It’s important you open your bills and deal with the debt straight away.

Do you often use credit to pay regular bills, but then find you can only manage the minimum repayment? That’s just going to build a debt. Here’s how to deal with debt:

  • Try to put your debts in order of importance – some will be more urgent to pay than others.
  • Work out how much you can afford to repay each month.
  • Contact your lenders to work out a repayment plan you can afford.
  • Make sure you’re getting everything you’re entitled to – benefits, tax credits, child maintenance and the right amounts.

If this still isn’t working, it’s important to seek help with your situation. By getting debt advice, you can deal with your current situation and set yourself up in such a way that it’s not going to happen again.

There is a lot of support around to help you manage your money, plan a budget or deal with debts so don’t be afraid to ask for debt advice. The sooner you deal with the problem, the faster you’ll be able to provide a secure future for your children.

This tool was originally published by The Money Advice Service. DWP is not responsible for its content or accuracy.

Where can I go next?

  • Gingerbread - Fact sheet

    A factsheet which provides information and support on debts including how to budget, how to deal with your creditors and hot to get your debts under control.

  • Citizens Advice - Debt and Money

    Information to help you deal with your debt problems, how to avoid losing your home and how to get your finances back into shape.

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    Money Advice Service - Managing Debt

    Useful information on how to deal with and manage debt from the Money Advice Service.