In panic mode

Hi, not sure where to start so trying the diary option but any help will be greatly appreciated.
I’m claiming UC and housing benefit.
after deductions £689
deductions: 
tax credit recovery £10
council tax arrears £16.75
bedroom tax £60

spending £657.60
rent £442.86
council tax £9.00
dual fuel £20
water 37.90
internet & mobile £39.50
food/housekeeping 108.33

left with £31.43

now for the debts, these are currently waiting for me to deal with as I’m not sure what to do about them…
argos store card (now with moorcroft) £346
united utilities (now with Orbit)
£2050 from previous address 2 years ago
And then this is the tricky one… I’ve been paying the minimum £20 month to British Gas on standing order since the beginning of the year.  They now want to change it to £150 a month as I was £579 in arrears that was in July… it is now £822 in arrears!  I can’t afford to pay any more and it just keeps climbing!

Step change
they recommended going for Administration order and pay £57.34 for 5 years 7months
Or DMP at £30.19 for 3 years 5 months
BUT
the breakdown said
United utilities £17.15 monthly for 120 months
British gas £8.43 for 69 months (when the balance was at £579!!)

I’m not tens of thousands in debt, no credit cards or loans etc (Argos was to purchase a bed to help with back pain)
But I’m losing sleep and don’t know where to turn. I know things are going to get worse and I really want to get on top of them.  I’m trying hard to find work after being self employed pre covid but lost everything when I lost both my parents within a month of each other.  I recently found out I haven’t paid enough national insurance for pension and no private pension, I’m 55 next month. I have read some heartbreaking stories of debt on this forum and I keep you all in my prayers and wish you all financial freedom soon.


Comments

  • Brie
    Brie Posts: 9,345
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    Sorry to hear you are struggling so much.  Are you able to post more details of your finances so we can see if there's anywhere we can help?

    http://www.stoozing.com/soa.php
    "Never retract, never explain, never apologise; get things done and let them howl.”
  • [font=courier new][b]Statement of Affairs and Personal Balance Sheet[/b][b]

    Household Information[/b]
    Number of adults in household........... 1
    Number of children in household......... 0
    Number of cars owned.................... [b]

    Monthly Income Details[/b]
    Monthly income after tax................ 0
    Partners monthly income after tax....... 0
    Benefits................................ 689.03
    Other income............................ 0[b]
    Total monthly income.................... 689.03[/b][b]

    Monthly Expense Details[/b]
    Mortgage................................ 0
    Secured/HP loan repayments.............. 0
    Rent.................................... 442.87
    Management charge (leasehold property).. 0
    Council tax............................. 9
    Electricity............................. 10
    Gas..................................... 10
    Oil..................................... 0
    Water rates............................. 37.9
    Telephone (land line)................... 0
    Mobile phone............................ 6
    TV Licence.............................. 0
    Satellite/Cable TV...................... 0
    Internet Services....................... 33.5
    Groceries etc. ......................... 108.33
    Clothing................................ 0
    Petrol/diesel........................... 0
    Road tax................................ 0
    Car Insurance........................... 0
    Car maintenance (including MOT)......... 0
    Car parking............................. 0
    Other travel............................ 0
    Childcare/nursery....................... 0
    Other child related expenses............ 0
    Medical (prescriptions, dentist etc).... 0
    Pet insurance/vet bills................. 0
    Buildings insurance..................... 0
    Contents insurance...................... 0
    Life assurance ......................... 0
    Other insurance......................... 0
    Presents (birthday, christmas etc)...... 0
    Haircuts................................ 0
    Entertainment........................... 0
    Holiday................................. 0
    Emergency fund.......................... 0[b]
    Total monthly expenses.................. 657.6[/b]
    [b]

    Assets[/b]
    Cash.................................... 0
    House value (Gross)..................... 0
    Shares and bonds........................ 0
    Car(s).................................. 0
    Other assets............................ 0[b]
    Total Assets............................ 0[/b]
    [b]
    No Secured nor Hire Purchase Debts[/b]

    [b]Unsecured Debts[/b]
    Description....................Debt......Monthly...APR[b]
    Total unsecured debts..........0.........0.........-  [/b]

    [b]
    Monthly Budget Summary[/b]
    Total monthly income.................... 689.03
    Expenses (including HP & secured debts). 657.6
    Available for debt repayments........... 31.43
    Monthly UNsecured debt repayments....... 0[b]
    Amount left after debt repayments....... 31.43[/b]

    [b]Personal Balance Sheet Summary[/b]
    Total assets (things you own)........... 0
    Total HP & Secured debt................. -0
    Total Unsecured debt.................... -0[b]
    Net Assets.............................. 0[/b]

    [i]Created using the SOA calculator at www.stoozing.com. 
    Reproduced on Moneysavingexpert with permission, using other browser.[/i][/font]
  • Did I do that right?? 😕
  • Hi DeeTeeD, it does look very tight. Have you spoken to citizens advice? I don’t know that the step change offers would work as you would need to be paying more for your utilities as they should be now and your budget should include a little for clothes and contents insurance I think? If you were paying a DMP for 3 years it would be expected that you might need something like some pants or a replacement winter coat in all that time! You don’t want to sign up for something that makes your situation worse, but you do need a solution that helps you sleep at night. There are lots of people on here who will be able to give good advice. I’ve not been in your situation, but I feel at the very least you need to explain to step change how much British Gas need per month and also get some advice on your pension (you have 10 yrs or so to pull that around). The main thing is don’t panic, things will get better just because you are making the right moves to fix this. Keep posting, people will help. 
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