Uncertainty about coronavirus has made many people depressed and anxious about how they will survive financially in the months ahead. At first, Covid-19 and redundancy were the most frequent searches on our website advice service. Now, the main worry is debt.
He had no family close by and somehow hadn’t talked to work colleagues in a long time. His friends were mainly key workers in safe full-time jobs and he didn’t feel he had much in common with them. He certainly didn’t want to talk to them about his difficulties.
Joe had been working from home since March and was furloughed. Now he faced redundancy.
While he was working most of his money went on rent and some basic furniture. He had no savings to speak of. He was trying to keep up rent payments but falling behind with other bills. Soon the rent would be unaffordable too.
Joe was getting more and more depressed. He knew he needed help but didn’t know who to ask. When he typed ‘Help with Debt’ into his browser one of the results was Citizens Advice. He had seen our national people talking about debts on TV so he clicked on the site.
Here is the ‘how-to’ advice he found:
The checklist immediately cheered Joe up. He could follow the steps for himself but could speak to an adviser if necessary. He got all his paperwork together and contacted his creditors. He was surprised to find they were pleased he had made contact to explain his problems.
He said he was preparing a budget and planning to check with Citizens Advice he was doing things right. He would then agree an affordable repayment plan.
When Joe contacted us he was impressed he could speak to an adviser confidentially and free of charge. He explained what he had done and asked if there was anything he had missed in his budget. Together they worked out Joe’s repayment plan.
Like many others after using Citizens Advice, he was much less stressed and ready for a new start.
* Not his real name.