Catalogue debt warning
Debt advice charity the Money Advice Trust is reporting that its National Debtline took more than 25,000 calls for help from people with debts to catalogue companies last year, which is a record. The first quarter of this year has seen the problem continue to increase, with over 7,000 calls received.
Catalogue debt is the fifth most common problem debt dealt with by National Debtline advisers, ahead of issues with mortgages, rent and even payday loans.
Joanna Elson OBE, Chief Executive of the Money Advice Trust, said: "Catalogue debts go largely unmentioned in public these days, but advisers at National Debtline hear from nearly 100 people every day* struggling to repay such debts. Many people might be surprised to hear we get more calls on catalogue debts than on things like mortgages, rent and payday loans.
"When buying from a catalogue, many people don't realise they are signing a consumer credit agreement, which means the debt is enforceable in the courts. Additionally many people don't realise that missing a payment on a catalogue debt will usually invalidate any special low or zero per cent interest deal.
"Anyone struggling to meet repayments on catalogue debts should seek free advice from National Debtline or visit My Money Steps (mymoneysteps.org)."