Outstanding Debt

Hello to all and firstly apologies if my question has been answered previously and also for the long first post!!

Up until December 2021 I was in DMP with stepchange but unfortunately I did not find their service very good as I has some debts which I forgot to add at the start of the plan and they were unable to add these to my plan.
Over the last few weeks I have looked into my credit file and listed all my debts and approached my creditors directly to get an updated balance for each.
I have also made a spreadsheet to work out a payment plan taking into consideration my outgoings and expected salary etc.
Up until 17/01 I had 27 outstanding debts totalling around £17,200 and each one of these debts had been bought by debt collection agencies. I had some money gifted to me over xmas so I decided to pay off some of the smaller debts so I am now left with 21 debts totalling around £16,600.
I am really looking on some advice on what to do next - my plan is to clear up my smaller debts first with higher amounts whilst at the same time making smaller payments to my larger debts. Once the smaller debts are paid I will then increase my payments for the other outstanding debts. Is this a good idea or should I make equal payments to each? My debts are held through the following collection companies Debt Managers x 5, Lowell x 12, Town and county x 1, Moorcroft x 2 and PRA group x 1. I am also hoping to make ad hoc payments throughout the year(s)  will this be frowned upon by the collection agencies? 

I have also asked each of my creditors to supply me with information about any discount offers on each account - should I be lucky enough to get one and be able to pay this how does this affect my credit file?? My credit score is absolutely shocking and yes I know I am the one who got myself in this situation!!

Again I apologise for the long winded message but any advice or guidance would be greatly appreciated

Thank you for your time


  • fatbellyfatbelly Forumite
    18.1K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper Cashback Cashier
    That all sounds a bit chaotic.

    If you are certain that a debt management plan is your best option and that you can clear your debts in a reasonable period, say 5 years or less, then it does have advantages going self-managed but I suggest the following:

    1. Do cca requests on all relevant debts (not fuel debts or phones or overdrafts) - any that can't provide these are unenforceable.

    2. Only make payments to those that that are enforceable, i.e. those that can provide a cca and there has never been a 6-year period of no payment.

    3. Produce a statement of affairs to show how what you are paying each one is all you can afford, and pay this regularly each month. Make the payments on a pro-rata basis.

    4. Save any ad hoc sums into a separate pot, an account not connected to any of your debts.

    5. When you have a lump sum saved, write to your creditors to propose full and final settlement at say 25%

    6. start to pay off those that accept, always getting the final deal in writing

    7. don't worry about your credit file - with 20 defaults it's going to be awful until they drop off after 6 years.
  • kimwpkimwp Forumite
    1.2K Posts
    1,000 Posts Third Anniversary Name Dropper
    Are you still paying interest on any of these debts?
    Statement of Affairs (SOA) link: https://www.lemonfool.co.uk/financecalculators/soa.php

    For free, non-judgemental debt advice, try: Stepchange or National Debtline. Beware fee charging companies with similar names.
  • brettmanchesterbrettmanchester Forumite
    26 Posts
    Part of the Furniture 10 Posts Combo Breaker
    Are any of your debts due to pay day loans?
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