Over 60s urged to seek debt advice

The Debt Counsellors believe that only professional advice can help the million pensioners with an average debt of £15,500, while 50,000 more have debts over £50,000.

John Porter, senior counsellor with The Debt Counsellors, said pensioners should not stay silent about debt: “People of a certain age are reluctant to ask for help when it comes to their finances.”

His comments come in the wake of Prudential’s report which highlighted the extent to which Britain’s pensioners are in debt.

Yet this is part of a greater problem of personal debt and Mr Porter said that anyone with financial problems, young or old, can get advice.

“We urge anyone with debt problems, whether they are a pensioner or not, to get debt advice as a first step towards becoming debt free again,” he added.

David Mond, chief executive of debt resolution company ClearDebt, noted that pensioners on state pensions only should take great care in choosing their route out of debt: “Only those with a surplus, which usually means those in an occupational pension, will be suitable for either debt management plans or IVAs.

“And, whilst many creditors will urge indebted pensioners to look at debt management plans with organisations like CCCS, these plans are usually scheduled to last ten years and do not usually write off a proportion of the debt – which an IVA can.”

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