Catalogue Crisis

My friend (yes it really is my friend and not me!) is in a bit of a mess with her catalogue debts at the moment. She has asked me to help her manage what shes got to pay off as shes feeling a bit swamped by final demands and threats from debt recovery agencies.

Basically ive worked out that after her bills and giving herself a minimum amount to live off, she has £210 left to make payments to these catalogue companys. The trouble is there is quite a lot and i dont know whether she should pay off the smallest/biggest ones first or just make small payments on each of them every month. On some of these bills she is incurring admin charges ranging between £5-£15 every time they send a reminder.

Ive enclosed a list of the amounts she owes on each catalogue and would be eternally grateful for any advice or strategies on how to tackle it as i dont want to let her down!


CHOICE - £247.17
CHOICE FOR YOU - £126.93
EMPIRE - £79.96
INDEX - £89.92
NEXT - £248.46
MARSHALL WARD - £57.97

She is no longer making purchases from these (or any other) catalogues as i have possession of her bank cards.
«1

Comments

  • ms_london
    ms_london Posts: 2,852 Forumite
    First Post Photogenic Name Dropper First Anniversary
    Leo wrote:
    My friend (yes it really is my friend and not me!) is in a bit of a mess with her catalogue debts at the moment. She has asked me to help her manage what shes got to pay off as shes feeling a bit swamped by final demands and threats from debt recovery agencies.

    Basically ive worked out that after her bills and giving herself a minimum amount to live off, she has £210 left to make payments to these catalogue companys. The trouble is there is quite a lot and i dont know whether she should pay off the smallest/biggest ones first or just make small payments on each of them every month. On some of these bills she is incurring admin charges ranging between £5-£15 every time they send a reminder.

    Ive enclosed a list of the amounts she owes on each catalogue and would be eternally grateful for any advice or strategies on how to tackle it as i dont want to let her down!


    CHOICE - £247.17
    CHOICE FOR YOU - £126.93
    EMPIRE - £79.96
    INDEX - £89.92
    NEXT - £248.46
    MARSHALL WARD - £57.97

    She is no longer making purchases from these (or any other) catalogues as i have possession of her bank cards.

    Hiya.

    What we need to know are the APR's (if any). I know that Next's will be pretty high, but not sure about the others. (when i had catalogue debts, a lot of them were 0% APR), so this would make a difference on who should get more money than the others.

    Ask your friend to write to each of the creditors or phone them and say that she is having financial difficulties at the moment & would like to set up a repayment plan, this might include them freezing interest/fees on her account, but so long as she/he communicates with them & they know when they can expect payment they should be ok with it. It's when creditors are ignored, or not paid when they said they will be, is when they get mad!!

    You are meant to pro-rata your payments, dividing the £210 between the creditors in order of who should get the higher percentage of the repayment (in this case, most probably Next). I thought there was a calculator somewhere for this, anyone have any ideas??

    I hope this helps for starters.

    Ms_London xx
  • xela_17
    xela_17 Posts: 421 Forumite
    As well as the APRs, your friend should also take into account the fees she incurs when she gets a reminder. Then she will have a really accurate picture of which ones are costing her the most.
    What did I do at work before I discovered MSE?!

    DFD - WAS: a while ago

    NOW - not sure, due to boyfriend going back to uni for masters and now pgce. Worth it in the long run!
    Proud to be dealing with my debts!
  • ms_london
    ms_london Posts: 2,852 Forumite
    First Post Photogenic Name Dropper First Anniversary
    xela_17 wrote:
    As well as the APRs, your friend should also take into account the fees she incurs when she gets a reminder. Then she will have a really accurate picture of which ones are costing her the most.

    Thats true, but i am sure that they would stop the fees once the "friend" has communicated with them to let them know that payment is on its way etc, and once a repayment programme has been agreed, that the "friend" perhaps sets up the repayments by DD, ensuring that payments are not late, and no more charges are incurred.

    Get a list of the APR's, post on here again with them & we will let you know who your "friend" should be paying first etc.

    Ms_London

    (im using "" just so that its clear who we are talking about, rather than you, - the original poster.)
  • krisskross
    krisskross Posts: 7,677 Forumite
    Are these catalogue debts legally enforceable? Were any agreements signed?
  • Debt_Free_Chick
    Debt_Free_Chick Posts: 13,276 Forumite
    Combo Breaker First Post
    And are there any minimum monthly payments that need to be made? If so, can you list those too?
    Warning ..... I'm a peri-menopausal axe-wielding maniac ;)
  • Debt_Free_Chick
    Debt_Free_Chick Posts: 13,276 Forumite
    Combo Breaker First Post
    krisskross wrote:
    Are these catalogue debts legally enforceable? Were any agreements signed?

    Good point - though a lot of them tie up the agreement in the small print of the order form, when you tick the box to say you want to pay by instalments.
    Warning ..... I'm a peri-menopausal axe-wielding maniac ;)
  • fluffymuffin
    fluffymuffin Posts: 130 Forumite
    just a quick suggestion - would it be possible for this person to apply for a credit card at 0% for 6 months on super balance transfers or purchases? The total only comes to just over £850 so if they has a half decent credit rating they could get that limit then its all in one place and easy to manage - if they arrnage to pay by direct debit there shouldnt be any charges to pay and if they are paying off at £200 a month it would all be paid off within 5 months i.e. before the 0% period runs out. Then they could also shut down all the other accounts - you could sit on the credit card so they dont use it and the temptation is also removed to spend more.

    Hoe this helps - obvisouly if they ahve a poor credit rating this might not be an option but it could help to simplify things - good luck!
  • Leo_2
    Leo_2 Posts: 14 Forumite
    First of all thanks for your quick replys, much appreciated :o

    Ive had a look at the catalogues websites and as far as i can make out the APR's are as follows ;


    CHOICE - £247.17 (0%. This is now with a debt recovery agency.)
    CHOICE FOR YOU - £126.93 (0%. This is now with a debt recovery agency)
    EMPIRE - £79.96 (0%. This is now with a debt recovery agency)
    INDEX - £89.92 (From the back of the letter, it looks like 32.9%. This is now in the hands of a debt recovery agency)
    NEXT - £248.46 (25.99%. This is NOT with debt recovery)
    MARSHALL WARD - £57.97 (39.7%. This is NOT with debt recovery.)
  • Leo_2
    Leo_2 Posts: 14 Forumite
    The only minimum payments being required are Next (requesting £46.17) and Marshall Ward (requesting 8.00). As the rest are with debt agencies, there doesnt appear to be any minimum payments offered.

    My friend chelle already has a credit card with capital one (which she is also struggling with. She has nothing available to spend on it) so the option of getting another one might not be possible as her credit rating is probably poor. Its her payday tomorrow so if i can come up with a plan of action then she is going to ring each of the companies to offer a payment plan. Just one other thing, will these catalogues be negotiable when it comes to discussing payment schemes or will they take a hard line? Many thanks.
  • Tony_H_3
    Tony_H_3 Posts: 2,643 Forumite
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    Month 1

    Choice: 12.35
    Choice4U: 6.35
    Empire: 4.00
    Index: 89.92 (Paid in full)
    Next: 39.41
    MWard: 57.97 (Paid in full)


    Month 2

    Choice: 12.35
    Choice4U: 6.35
    Empire: 4.00
    Next: 187.30


    Month 3

    Choice: 102.48
    Choice4U: 52.63
    Empire: 33.14
    Next: 21.75


    Month 4

    Choice: 114.32
    Choice4U: 58.72
    Empire: 36.96


    Month 5

    Choice: 5.67 (Paid in full)
    Choice4U: 2.88 (Paid in full)
    Empire: 1.86 (Paid in full)


    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    These calculations might have to be adjusted slightly for interest & concentrate on paying off the account with applied interest. Most catalogues have a 20 week payment policy which means Choice, Choice4u & Empire would be exceeding this period based on the fact that the debt is current.

    But they should all go for it!!icon7.gif
This discussion has been closed.
Meet your Ambassadors

Categories

  • All Categories
  • 343K Banking & Borrowing
  • 250K Reduce Debt & Boost Income
  • 449.6K Spending & Discounts
  • 235K Work, Benefits & Business
  • 607.7K Mortgages, Homes & Bills
  • 173K Life & Family
  • 247.7K Travel & Transport
  • 1.5M Hobbies & Leisure
  • 15.9K Discuss & Feedback
  • 15.1K Coronavirus Support Boards