The following guest post is brought to you by Debt Line.
When it comes to borrowing, it’s not just the government who are in a crisis; at the end of last year, consumer debt in the UK ballooned to £1.5trillion, with the average adult now liable for £29,500. With 80% of adults in the UK currently in debt, addressing the issue of debt management should be at the top of the political agenda. Yet it seems like nothing is being done to tackle it.
There are two things that need to be addressed here. Firstly, we need to deal with the symptoms of the problem, i.e. fixing the current state we find ourselves in. And secondly, we need to address the underlying problem: how we approach personal borrowing in this country.
Treating the symptoms
One third of UK adults in debt believe they will remain in debt indefinitely. This is a startling insight into the mind-set of borrowers in the UK. The fact that so many of us feel resigned to being in the red for the rest of our lives should be something for politicians to get worked up about. How are the work force supposed to stay motivated and pull the country out of a recession if there is no hope of them ever being able to pull themselves out of their own debt crisis?
It doesn’t seem any help or sage advice is forthcoming from the government, however consumers with debt problems can help themselves by signing up to a debt management company, like Debt Line. They can help consolidate and manage your debts – and even deal with your creditors – which is good news for those who feel like there is no way out of their debt problem.
[Kevin] Remember to do your own do diligence before engaging in business with any debt company, and don’t use the relief as an excuse to get into more debt!
Fixing the underlying problem
Unfortunately there is no quick fix for this, as it involves a radical overhaul – not only of the policies and mechanisms which underpin the borrowing system – but also of the way we view credit in this country. To do this, the government needs to introduce regulation to govern the way banks and credit card companies offer young people credit. Measures need to be put in place to ensure a creditor cannot give credit to a young borrower without fully explaining to them the implications of what credit can entail.
We also need to go even further. Starting with reaching children when they are still in school. The government should raise awareness of the problems that debt can cause with teenagers before they are able to get credit themselves. Teaching practical economics classes – including content about debt management – in schools is the only way to make young people aware of how to practically manage their own money when they reach adulthood. And it might be the only way to prevent a generation of children from getting into the same debt problems as we have.
This guest post was brought to you by Debt Line.