PLEASE help!

Please could you kind people hand me some advice regarding my brother?

A little bit of background:
My brother has been in a lot of financial difficulties over the years (approx 5yrs), and my parents have bailed him out to the tune of around £10k. Over time he has paid them back.

He still owes them a small amount to mum and dad which he is paying back until the end of the year.

Last month he came to us and asked if he could borrow money for rent.
Mr P and I gave him £500. At the end of the month he gave us £250 back and we were expecting the other £250 at the end of this month.

I have just had my lovely mum on the phone crying to me as he came to them last night and asked them to pay rent for him. They had to write the landlord a cheque for £450 to get him out of the carp again.

I hadn’t told my folks that I lent him money as I didn’t want them to be disappointed with him again. When mum told me what happened last night, I told her about the money I had lent him for last month’s rent.

He gets paid from one job to the tune of around £1,200pcm. He has a second job in a restaurant which pays him around another £60 a week (I think).

I don’t know what he spends his money on. He is single and living with a mate. Rent is only (I learned today) £430 per month. So bills I guess would be another £100 or so per month.

I am due to see him on Sunday to sort out his finances, but I’m asking for advice on how to deal with him?
It’s continuing to tear the family apart.
Thanks and sorry for the long post.
Little Pickle


  • hey Lp,

    Sorry to hear about the troubles.

    First off I would get him to transfer the rent and bills money to your parents or your account every month on the day he gets paid, then have the direct debits coming out of their or your account (or you could set up an account with him as the account holder but you as authorised signatory on the account)

    Then sit down and start from the begining like you would advise any newbie on here.

    Debt Now~Total-£14,366.72~CC-£1,600.00~Sofa-£1,349.01~Loan-£11,417.71
    :eek:Debt@Oct 12~Total £15,674.60~CC-£1,636.40~Sofa-£1,648.77~Loan-£12,389.43:eek:
  • Little_Pickle
    Thanks EAMD... you're a good mate...

    Problem is that Mum and Dad took charge of his finances once before (taking his cards and giving him an allowance) and he went behind their backs, ordered a replacement card and carried on spending....


    I thought all of this was over. :(

    We'll get through it of course, I just tend to think that there is something else going on (emotionally) to make him spend like this.
    My Dad thinks this is a load of bull and my brother is a selfish twonk... although he would never say that to his face.

    Thanks again x
  • GeorgeUK
    GeorgeUK Posts: 7,737 Forumite
    First, you will need to find out what he is spending the money on. Will he let you see his bank statements or is this just going to be something he's written out regarding his debts?

    If he doesn't change his spending habits the debt may go for a little while but will reappear if the main cause has not been dealt with.

    I would let him know that there is always a solution and ask him to complete the SOA calculator on the makesenseof cards site.
    The snowball calculator on whats the cost may also spur him on if he can see light at the end of the tunnel, but if he is gambling or spending the money on something else, you need to deal with this first.

    You need to be firm without lecturing him. Ask his opinion of what he's tried to get rid of the debt and why he thinks he's still in debt.
    After falling off the gambling wagon (twice): £33,600 (24,000+ 9,600) - Original CC Debt: £7,885.91

    Dad Gift 6k ¦ Savings & Inv Tst: £2,500
    Loan 10k: £0 ¦ Dad 5.5k: £2,270 ¦ LTSB: £0 ¦ RBS: £0 ¦ Virgin £0 ¦ Egg £0

    Total Owed: £2,270 (+6k) 11/08/2011
  • Little_Pickle
    Many thanks George, you talk a lot of sense.

    We have tried all kinds of tactics over the years in regard to trying to get to the bottom of it but it falls on deaf ears.

    I do not think he gambles or takes drugs (I know he doesn't do that), but more think it's his 'going out' habits.

    He spends a lot when he goes out (always the guy to buy all the rounds).
    I think that it's a pride thing.

    He couldn't go out with £20 because he's always bought the drinks / would looks silly with only a little money / mates are (TBH) chavs who take the pee...

    He's a nice guy, but foolish. I don't think he has any real friends just 'fair weather friends' IYSWIM.

    He is lovely... so sweet... he's just in a real... well, pickle, I guess...
  • misspoppy
    misspoppy Posts: 1,009 Forumite
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    Hi Pickle

    I'm sorry your whole family has been involved like this but this could be where your brothers problem lies, he knows that Mum and Dad or you will bail him out if it gets rough. As he has got into a mess before and had to go back to be being treated like a child it seems he hasn't learnt the lessons, you should think about letting him stand on his own two feet and this time you and your family agree that from now on no one bails him out but still offer to help him draw up some budgets.

    We have had a problem in our family where my sister knew someone would always help her but we've found out that really she needs to sort her own problems out and take responsibility for her own actions and it sounds like your brother might need this lesson too.

    Good luck he's lucky to have a family that cares.
  • Steel_2
    Steel_2 Posts: 1,649 Forumite
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    This isn't what you want to hear I'm afraid, but the reason why he never learns is because you and your parents keep bailing him out.

    Some people learn fiscal responsibility from watching people around them, but most of us learn by getting in trouble and finding our own way out and learning from the experience.

    Your brother has learnt that the way out of fiscal trouble is to ask you and his parents for a handout. That's how he deals with it.

    Ask yourself what will happen once your parents are gone and he is still doing this? Who will he be coming to all the time? You.

    He's a grown up and he needs to start behaving like one. And he should start by learning to get out of his own messes.

    Tell him on Sunday there will be no more money from you - that you can't afford it anymore. And your parents should do the same.

    I know you love him and he is very sweet, but you and your parents are spending your hard-earned money bailing this guy out time and again. You can't put that money in the bank and earn interest on it or save up for something you really want because he has taken it off you.

    He's spending both his and your hard earned money p****ing it up a wall.
    "carpe that diem"
  • Shineyhappy
    Hi LP,

    How old is your brother? I ask that because I think you need to actually get him thinking about what he wants from life. He is in a position where he could have a lot of surplus cash which he could save for his own place or for a car or for his future. Is he old enough to be persuaded that its time to grow up?

    I would also try and get him to keep a spending diary so he can see how much of his money is wasted on junk. It might actually shock him into being responsible.
    Debt Free - done
    Mortgage Free - done
    Building up the pension pot
  • Little_Pickle
    Thanks for your replies.
    I have just spoken with Dad and he is very concerned.
    My parents are no longer in the position to help him and I will not be giving him any more money either.

    I am at a loss as to what to do now.

    How can I get him to change his ways?
  • Little_Pickle
    Hi LP,

    How old is your brother? quote]

    He is 27.
    He is so unorganised he would never keep a spending diary.
  • GeorgeUK
    GeorgeUK Posts: 7,737 Forumite
    What would his reaction be if his father phoned him to ask for money?

    If he started thinking about others, it may be a good start. If he can't see that this is a problem then you may need to let him find out the hard way.
    After falling off the gambling wagon (twice): £33,600 (24,000+ 9,600) - Original CC Debt: £7,885.91

    Dad Gift 6k ¦ Savings & Inv Tst: £2,500
    Loan 10k: £0 ¦ Dad 5.5k: £2,270 ¦ LTSB: £0 ¦ RBS: £0 ¦ Virgin £0 ¦ Egg £0

    Total Owed: £2,270 (+6k) 11/08/2011
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