Payday loan borrowers ‘usually have other debts’

Those who take out payday loans are often people who have lost control of their borrowing and tend to have other debt, it has been observed.

Citize…

Those who take out payday loans are often people who have lost control of their borrowing and tend to have other debt, it has been observed.

Citizens Advice (CAB) chief executive Gillian Guy said the issue is growing as there has been a fourfold increase in people seeking help from the organisation this year whose debt problems have stemmed from using this kind of credit.

Moreover, she noted that while the typical person seeking advice from the CAB who does not have a payday loan is in debt to five creditors, for those with payday loans the average rises to eight.

This "suggests a pattern of people in long-term financial difficulty with other debts, who are much more likely to take out a payday loan to try and deal with these problems," Ms Guy argued.

The CAB chief was commenting in the wake of a report by insolvency professionals' body R3 revealing 3.5 million people are considering taking out a payday loan in the next six months.

Another organisation to comment after this report was Consumer Focus, which has called for curbs on such lending to stop people getting into trouble.

Director of financial services at the organisation Sarah Brooks said: "Regulation in this area is not strong enough and much more needs to be done to prevent consumers getting caught in spiralling debt."

Among the ways Consumer Focus would like to see the industry regulated is a limit of five payday loans per person, as well as a requirement for more stringent checks to be carried out on the ability of the borrower to pay.

By Joe White
 

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