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Demand for debt advice surges now Christmas is over

PUBLISHED: 18:00 29 December 2009 | UPDATED: 15:25 05 October 2010

THE New Year is expected to bring a surge in demand for debt advice in London, following the Christmas festivities.

Enquiries are likely to double in January, according to the Debt Advice Foundation, with 100,000 people in London alone becoming insolvent last year

By Mike Brooke

THE New Year is expected to bring a surge in demand for debt advice in London, following the Christmas festivities.

Enquiries are likely to double in January, according to the Debt Advice Foundation.

Around 100,000 people in London became insolvent in 2008, with statistics for 2009 showing record levels of personal insolvency.

Requests for advice are now set to soar with so many people finding it difficult to make ends meet, the charity points out.

“We tend to see the New Year resolution’ effect,” said the foundation’s managing director David Rodger.

“People who may have been in denial’ about their finances or decided to try and make it through Christmas’ see January as the time to seek help and make a fresh start.

“Debt problems can be stressful over the festive period when there is pressure to spend.

“Some people may be struggling due to an unforeseen circumstance such as a salary cut or redundancy.”

The charity runs a free helpline on 0800-2922077, where callers speak to trained debt counsellors for advice.

The Debt Advice Foundation advises people to work out exactly what they owe and how much is coming in, then prioritise the debts and make sure they know who should be paid first, such as mortgage or rent payments, council tax, court fines, maintenance, hire purchase and gas and electric.

Above all, it urges, get professional help if they are struggling.

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