How does the Debt Advice Foundation differ to other debt charities? Cashfloat explore how they help people who are in debt and need advice and look at the financial education and awareness they give. Read on to learn more.
- Debt Advice Foundation established a program to teach money management skills to children
- This debt charity also publish statistics for reserach into debt in the UK
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In this article, which is part of our guide to debt management plans, we will discuss the debt charity, the Debt Advice Foundation.
Debt Advice, Debt Resources, Education, Research and Campaigning
There are several debt charities in the UK, which help people who are struggling with debt by providing advice on how they can tackle it. One that is slightly different to the others is the Debt Advice Foundation. As with the other debt charities, this charity primarily exists to provide practical advice on what people should do if they find themselves struggling with debt. However, on top of doing this, they also provide financial education for children, campaign for better consumer protection from policy and lawmakers and, also, release data which helps people to better understand debt.
For people who are struggling with debt, it is essential that they find the right help to overcome the problem. Finding good, impartial advice on how to tackle debt is essential and charities are often the best place to go. Throughout this Cashfloat guide to debt management plans we have encouraged people who are struggling with debt to avoid fee charging debt management companies and, instead, to go to debt charities. Debt charities exist to help people, unlike debt management companies, which exist to make a profit and often charge high fees for providing services which can be obtained for free from a debt charity. The Debt Advice Foundation is one charity that has an established history of providing good, impartial and professional guidance to people who are struggling with debt.
Debt Advice From the Debt Advice Foundation
The Debt Advice Foundation’s primary goal is to help people who are struggling with debt. As such, they provide free and professional advice to people who are doing so. Their telephone debt counselling service helps over 10,000 people every year to deal with debt problems and it is a great place to go if you find yourself struggling to repay your debts.
Help to Find the Right Debt Solution
The advisors at the Debt Advice Foundation help all kinds of people to understand what their options are when they are struggling with debt. Of the many ways to approach debt, it can be hard to know which is the best one to choose and, on top of this, it can also be difficult to know what will actually happen for an individual if they make a particular choice.
The advisors at the Debt Advice Foundation are well trained and well experienced. On top of this, as a charity, they are completely impartial. By working with people who go to them for help they are able to recommend the best course of action to take. After talking through a person’s situation, including their income, expenditure, assets and debts, they will help them to understand what the best solution is of the many that are available. They will try to find the solution that best:
- Gets you out of debt as quickly as possible
- Fully solves the problem
- Doesn’t add to your debts
- Protects your assets
- Is the least drastic and most appropriate solution to the problem
Some people may find that they just need advice on how they can go about tackling debt by themselves. Other people may find that a more involved or even legally binding solution, such as a debt management plan, an individual voluntary arrangement or an administration order will be necessary.
Help to Find the Right Support
Where people need ongoing support to recover from debt, such as from a debt management plan provider, they will help them to find a good organisation to provide it. The advisors at the Debt Advice Foundation will only pass you on to a reputable organisation. If, for example, they believe that a debt management plan is a good solution to your debt problem, they will pass you on to PayPlan, who we have featured throughout this guide as one of the best debt help organisations in the UK.
Resources to Help You Along the Way
In order to help people to manage their money more effectively and to get control of their debt, the Debt Advice Foundation provide a number of online tools and resources. Their personal debt analyser tool is particularly useful for people who are beginning to try and get a grip of their debts. After providing information about your income, expenditure and debts, it will tell you how much money you have spare to pay towards your debts, how long it will take you to pay them off and, also, how you can negotiate with creditors to reduce your payments.
As well as the personal debt analyser tool there is also:
- A budget planner tool
- A benefit entitlement guide
- A guide on what you can do to minimise your expenditure
- Information on how and where to check your credit score
- A practical money management guide
While the online resources are useful, they cannot completely replace speaking to an advisor in person. As we have already mentioned, the advisors at the Debt Advice Foundation are impartial, well trained and well experienced and are great people to go to if you need help understanding what you should do about your debts.
To contact the Debt Advice Foundation:
The Debt Advice Foundation
|Telephone||0800 043 40 50|
|Callback Request/Hearing Impaired||Available Here|
|Address||1 Anchor Court, Commercial Road, Darwen, Blackburn, BB3 0DB|
The Debt Advice Foundation believe that one of the best ways they can help to tackle debt is by preventing people from getting into debt in the first place. As such, they established DebtAware, which is a financial education programme for children, which teaches over 10,000 children each year about how to manage money. On top of this, they also provide some great debt education resources, which teachers and parents are able to access, and campaign for widespread financial education for children.
The DebtAware programme is aimed at 9-13 year olds and aims to help young people develop a responsible attitude towards money, gain a basic knowledge of finance, learn how to make good financial decisions and gain an understanding of the importance of future planning when it comes to money. DebtAware lessons are delivered by the DebtAware team and come as a programme of six lessons, with education provided on such matters as understanding the difference between needs and wants, knowing how to create a budget and understanding what constitutes good value. While, to many, it may seem unnecessary to educate children in such matters, the Debt Advice Foundation believe that instilling a good attitude towards money in children will help to lessen the risk of them getting into debt later in life.
Watch this video for feedback from teachers about the DebtAware program:
Campaigning For Regulations
The Debt Advice Foundation use their position, as an organisation which deals en masse with cases of debt, to represent the interests of financial service users. They believe that the complexity of the financial services sector increases the risk of financial damage being done to users and that, as a result, there should be much greater levels of scrutiny and protection from lawmakers. As such, they are:
- Affiliate members of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Debt and Personal Finance
- Registered supporters of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Financial Education for Young People
- Regular providers of evidence to regulatory authorities, such as the Competition and Markets Authority, the Insolvency Service and the Financial Conduct Authority
- The producers of the ‘ethical debt advice framework’
Another less notable, but important way that the Debt Advice Foundation help to tackle debt is by releasing statistics from their helpline. While everyone who calls the line is treated with confidentiality, by providing statistics into trends in debt, the Debt Advice Foundation hope to provide insights into the causes, nature and affordability of problem personal debt in the UK.
If you are struggling with debt and are wondering who you can turn to for help, then remember that it is always better to go with a free and impartial debt charity, rather than with a fee charging debt management company. The Debt Advice Foundation is one such charity, which provides a high standard of debt advice at no cost and only aims to help people who call them. If you are struggling with debt, then why not give them a call. As well as calling them, you can have a look at their online tools and resources and see if they can be of assistance.
As well as helping people who are struggling with debt directly, the Debt Advice Foundation also offer more through their DebtAware education programme, campaigning and statistical releases. That is why they are often regarded as one of the top debt charities in the UK.