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  1. #1

    Debt advice needed

    I'm looking for some debt advice for both myself and my partner.

    My partner and I have been together for 6 years and we've always kept our finances separate. I own my house and my partner makes a small contribution to living costs. I found out recently that my partner has been racking up some pretty heavy debts. She owes around 30,000 made up of 5 credit cards and 3 loans. The debts have been accumulated over many years but things came to a head recently when she explained the situation to me and how much she was struggling.

    We don't have an expensive life-style by any stretch but she/we are struggling to pay these debts so I was wondering what the best solution was? She's unable to get any further loan to do any debt consolidation. Can we take out some kind of long term agreement with the lenders themselves to lower the payments? Or are there any other things we should consider?

    Any advice would be much appreciated.

  2. #2
    Don't think about consolidating at the will very possibly end in disaster. I'd start by completing an soa (either joint, or ask your partner do complete one for herself - depends how you will be tackling these debts) - sticky at the top of the dfw page.

    It will probably be worth contacting one of the debts charities such as step change, who can set up a dmp, but it does depend on the figures in the soa. It may be a case that's she's able to deal with it herself, or further action may be needed.

    How has your partner accumulated this debt? If it's excessive spending, has she addressed this and is now budgeting? What has she been buying? Are there things that can be sold?

  3. #3
    I think your partner needs to address the reasons why she accumulated this debt? Was the majority spent on her or did she contribute to things you both enjoyed?
    I think she needs to sort out her own finances first and learn to budget before relying on you for help.
    What made her decide to tell you about this? Couldn't hide it any longer?
    I'm in a good position to advise here as I'm in a similar position to you. My partner came clean with debts at about 35,000 just over a month ago. Each day in October he told me all his outgoings and he also sold some of his lovely lego he'd collected for a few hundred pounds. Tough decisions made and I'm proud of him for it.

  4. #4
    We're going to look at doing a DMP with Step Change.

    It got to the point that I was questionning why she wasn't contributing more towards the household bills. In the end it turned into a big argument which is when the actual figures came out. We used to split holidays 50/50 but most of her holiday payments went on credit cards. Her daughter has been going to uni so she's been helping with that by contributing to living expenses and buying expensive birthday and christmas gifts, one was a new macbook for example. Each month she was short she'd look for more credit so its just been spiralling as the credit has been higher APR. She's just been burying her head in the sand and not wanting to change lifestyle. Not that we have a particularly expensive life style anyway.

    I'm split between being furious and wanting to help. I've always tried to be responsible with money. Virtually all of my money goes on household bills. I've not been able to save or treat the kids too much because of it.

    Oh well. We'll go with the DMP and see what happens.

    If anybody has any further advice then I'm all ears.

  5. #5
    I think your partner needs to come clean with her daughter on her level of debt to reduce her expectations of further support going forward.
    Whilst your offer of support is valuable I think your partner first needs to seek help and work out a debt repayment plan on her own account as this will obviously be her prime responsibility and an added incentive to get to grips with the problem.

    Once she has a debt repayment routine in place and her financial lifestyle is under control, I think that’s the point when any financial help you want to give should kick in. This has obviously been caused by a spending addiction of some kind and the only person who can really cure herself is her.

    First port of call is obviously a debt counselling charity, having set out a statement of account of all her debts. Does your partner work? Is there any possibility of her getting a second job to help speed up their repayment?


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