Debt warning over Christmas spending

Some members of the public could create serious debt problems for themselves by cutting back on essential bills to fund their Christmas spending, Citi…

Some members of the public could create serious debt problems for themselves by cutting back on essential bills to fund their Christmas spending, Citizens Advice has warned.

Manager of the charity in Thurso and Wick Jill Smith told the John O’Groat Journal many people could “cut back in area where perhaps they shouldn’t,” to help fund their festive spending.

She added: “For example, they may decide to not pay their council tax or any other important bill to get past Christmas and then they worry about it in January.”

Ms Smith warned this can have serious consequences and warned against such a move.

The charity boss also noted there has been a large rise in debt in Caithness, with cases up 30 per cent since April this year and the total owed in the sparsely-populated Highland county now standing at around £1.5 million.

And this is happening as people in the area face rising bills for food and fuel, with the prospect of things getting harder in 2011 when VAT rises, benefits are cut and public sector jobs are lost, while rising interest rates could also cause problems for many.

Many Britons are avoiding the prospect of getting into deeper debt over Christmas by cutting back on their spending, the Co-operative Bank found in a recent poll.

It established 70 per cent intend to reduce their expenditure, with less being lavished on presents, alcohol, partying and various other expenses.

Of the cutbacks, the biggest was on partying as 29 per cent said they would spend less on nights out.

By Joe White

Tell others:

shortlink