Do you have debts you are struggling to pay? As a first step, you should seek advice from a money adviser.
Please see debt solutions below for what may be available to you. The following publications give more information about dealing with debt:
Your money adviser can discuss some of the various debt relief options available to you. These may include:
- Re-mortgaging your home: This is only possible if you have equity - ie: the value of your property outweighs the amount you owe on your mortgage. When re-mortgaging, you may receive up to the full equity available on your property. You can use the money any way you want, including to pay other debts. Qualifying for a re-mortgage is dependent on your financial circumstances. Re-mortgaging means you will have a higher monthly mortgage payment and usually a longer term mortgage. Your home will be at risk if you do not pay your mortgage.
- Personal or secured loan: Can be used for debt consolidation. This means you will have fewer creditors to pay. However, you will have a bigger loan, may have a higher interest rate and may last longer. A secured loan means your property could be sold by your creditors to pay your loan if you default.
- Debt management plans: These can help you manage your debts and pay them off at a more affordable rate by reducing your monthly payments. However, they don’t offer the protection that statutory debt solutions do and creditors don’t have to agree to them, which means you could still face consequences such as sequestration.
This is not a full list of all options: your money adviser will be able to explain these in detail. Your credit rating may be affected with all options.
Further advice options
The following organisations can provide free advice and support services if you are dealing with debt.
- Money Advice Scotland - national umbrella organisation which promotes the development of free, independent, impartial and confidential debt advice
- Citizens Advice Scotland - give free, confidential, impartial and independent advice and information on a wide range of subjects, including debt and money advice
- National Debtline Scotland - telephone helpline providing confidential and independent advice on how to deal with debt problems
- Business Debtline - Business Debtline is a free, confidential debt advice service for the self-employed and small businesses. You can access Business Debtline by phone, email, webchat or get advice through the website.
- StepChange Debt Charity - free, anonymous debt advice and debt management solutions provided by a UK debt charity, formerly known as the Consumer Credit Counselling Service (CCCS).
- Partnership Action for Continuing Employment (PACE) - Scottish Government initiative dedicated to helping individuals and employers with the advice and support they need when faced with redundancy
- HM Revenue & Customs - if you've just become unemployed, you may be able to claim back some of the Income Tax you've paid
- Trading Standards in Scotland - an association of professional officers representing every Scottish local authority trading standards service
- Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland (ICAS) - to help find an insolvency practitioner
- The Law Society - to help find a solicitor who specialises in bankruptcy
The Scottish Government has introduced Scotland's Financial Health Service, which signposts to free and impartial guidance for people with financial issues. The website provides access to advice on debt, your home and money issues and helps you find the right trusted organisations.