Struggling to pay loans

I was wondering if anyone would be able to let me know what the best thing to do with loans I am struggling to pay. Do I speak to the companies direct and see if they can offer a payment plan or do I just go straight to a debt help company and see about getting a DMP or something similar set up. I haven't missed any payments yet but struggling more every month. Thank you in advance. 


  • RAS
    RAS Forumite Posts: 32,107
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    You don't go anywhere near a debt company, the fees they charge will not help clear your debt. 

    If you want to contact anyone use Stepchange, CAB or National Debtline, as their advice is free.

    Without knowing your income and expenditure, it's hard to advise, so do a Statement of Affairs, and let's see the scale of the problem before making decisions?

    The person who has not made a mistake, has made nothing
  • kimwp
    kimwp Forumite Posts: 1,499
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    As RAS says, it's best to do a statement of affairs to get the most helpful and accurate advice from us. The format for creating a statement of affairs is in my signature. You should fill in what you actually spend rather than what you would like to be spending or think you should be spending. 

    Generally if you need to go on a payment plan, it's better to get your accounts defaulted because the defaults drop off your credit history six years after they start. Without a default, the information about your debt issues will stay on your history for six years after the debt is settled. It's definitely worth talking to one of the charities (who will not charge you anything), but bear in mind they will try to get you on a payment plan as soon as possible, which may result in defaults not being applied.
    Statement of Affairs (SOA) link:

    For free, non-judgemental debt advice, try: Stepchange or National Debtline. Beware fee charging companies with similar names.
  • EssexHebridean
    EssexHebridean Forumite Posts: 19,713
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    SOA must be the first step - it could actually be that with a few tweaks to your budget that you've overlooked, you'll be able to continue to stay on an even keel - if you post the SOA we'll be able to take a look and hopefully make some suggestions. The key thing now you've identified an issue though is to get a plan in place - whatever that plan turns out to be - the longer you leave it now, the harder it becomes.

    SOA first, let's see if budgetary adjustments will do it before we jump ahead to debt management etc - just remember that there is always that option there if it's needed - and as said, through one of the free debt help charities - NEVER anyone who charges you fees for managing a DMP! 
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