Whilst “being in debt” has largely negative connotations, it is a normal part of managing our finances. Be it a student loan to fund university, a mortgage to buy a home, a new mobile phone contract or a credit card, debt allows us to spread the costs of things, makes them more affordable, and having the option to “buy now, pay later” is particularly useful when it comes to the bigger purchases we make in life. After all, there are few people who could hope to save all the money needed to buy a home without needing a mortgage!
If we make debt repayments on time and manage our debt, it can help transform and enhance our lives. However, if debt begins to get out of control, or a change in our personal circumstances makes meeting monthly repayments a struggle, debt has the potential to truly destroy lives.
Unfortunately, many people still consider those who get into financial difficulty as being reckless. They have overstretched themselves, been greedy, and have borrowed money they could not afford. Whilst this may be true in some cases, the reality is that everyone has the potential to get into financial difficulty, especially when financial uncertainty is caused by things beyond our control. The Covid-19 pandemic during 2020 is a case in point. A recent Which? Magazine survey found that 50% more UK households defaulted on at least one housing, credit card, loan, or bill payment in October 2020, than in the previous month. This not only highlights how debt issues are affecting more people, but it also shows that, for many, the line between debt discomfort and debt crisis is worryingly thin.
If you then consider that a 2019 survey by the debt charity Christians Against Poverty found 75% of people who sought help for their debts had become physically or mentally ill because of the stress and anxiety their financial situation was causing them, a growing debt crisis has the potential to seriously impact your employee’s physical and mental health and, therefore, their ability to do their job.
Clearly, it is better to deal with debt before it becomes a problem. Better with Money provides financial education in the workplace to bring money matters to life in an interesting and accessible way. We provide employees with the financial knowledge and tools to budget, reduce outgoings, make cost savings, prioritise payments and maximise income, to better manage debt and insulate themselves against problems in the future. For those facing a debt crisis, Better with Money’s “Tackling Debt” webinar gives them the knowledge, skills, and confidence to address their situation, guide them on how to get free, confidential, unjudgmental and impartial help and advice, and start the process of reducing their debt and the stress that it can bring.
If you would like to find out more about the “Tackling Debt” webinar or the other courses we offer, please visit our courses page