One in five owe £10,000

03 May 2006
According to a new poll conducted by YouGov, 19 per cent of the UK adult population, equivalent to around eight million people, now have outstanding debts of over £10,000.

Almost a quarter of those asked in the poll also have a six-figure mortgage or other secured loans on top of their unsecured borrowing, the poll suggests.

The under-25 age group is the worst affected, according to the survey conducted on behalf of financial adviser Thomas Charles, with 61 per cent of those with debts between £10,000 and £30,000 in this category.

Industry observers argue that loans have become to easy to obtain and this has led to people getting in over their head by borrowing money they cannot afford to pay back quickly enough to make it a manageable debt.

Consumers seem to agree. The survey shows that four out of every five people asked felt that their lenders had been irresponsible in lending money to those that clearly could not afford to meet repayments.

There are options available to those who find themselves in trouble, with financial assistance services such as the Consumer Credit Counselling Service (CCCS).

The CCCS gives independent advice to consumers who find themselves heavily in debt and, as a general rule, the CCCS advises cutting back if over 20 per cent of your monthly income is spent meeting loan repayments.

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