Struggling with mortgage arrears and negative equity? We can help.

Taking out a mortgage and buying a house is the biggest financial decision most people will make in their lives. No one makes this decision with the intention of falling behind on their payments or not paying back the loan, but sometimes situations arise which make it impossible for borrowers to meet their mortgage costs.

This situation is even worse when the value of your home is less than the outstanding value of the mortgage on it. This is known as negative equity and it compounds your problems with arrears.

If left unresolved, mortgage arrears could ultimately lead to your property being threatened with repossession. Negative equity gives you less scope for dealing with your debt because selling your property will not generate enough to pay off your mortgage or arrears, leaving you burdened with the shortfall.

Negative equity has become quite common in the UK since the financial crisis ten years ago, when house prices collapsed, forcing down the value of many peoples’ homes and leaving them owing many thousands of pounds more than their property was now worth.

At Negative Equity UK, we’ve seen hundreds of clients who can’t pay their mortgage and have fallen into arrears for a range of reasons. Some people have lost their job or had their working hours cut. Others bought their house before having children, only to find their costs becoming unmanageable once they start a family. In some cases, an illness has forced them to leave work or make changes to their home.

Whatever the source of your mortgage problems, the consequences of falling into arrears can be serious. In the worst case scenario, you could potentially lose your home and damage your credit rating badly enough you may struggle to borrow again.

With arrears mounting and your property already in negative equity, you need to take steps to deal with your debts. Holding out for your circumstances to change is not going to help and waiting could make the problem worse.

At Negative Equity UK, our team of property debt specialists offers a range of possible solutions based on your situation. Whatever your circumstances, the process starts with a case review. We will obtain all of the original documentation on your mortgage from your lender so we can assess your needs and work out the best way for us to help you.

Rather than take a one size fits all approach, we off bespoke solutions based on our clients’ specific problems and financial circumstances.

Many people need to sell their house in order to deal with their debt. In this case, we can arrange a shortfall sale and negotiate with your lender in order to write off as much of the remaining debt as possible, leaving you with a much smaller amount left to pay.

In September alone we wrote off a total of £1,287,323 of unaffordable mortgage debt for our clients.

If you’re in arrears on your mortgage, or you’re trapped in a property in negative equity and you need to move on take a look at our reviews and contact us on 0161 631 2727 or fill out a contact form on our website and we will arrange a call back and start the process of dealing with your property debt.

 

I Need A Debt Management Plan

I Need A Debt Management Plan

Debt debilitates people. It affects their physical and mental health, robs them of their self-respect and slowly, gradually, ultimately takes away their sense of well-being having first ended their hopes and dreams.

American financial author and television/radio personality Dave Ramsey advised: “You must gain control over your money or the lack of it will forever control you.”

As advice goes, it wasn’t too wide of the mark.

It has never been easier to accumulate debt. We are encouraged to do so all the time with the entire capitalist economic system now appearing to run on tick. As a result, tens of millions of people spend tens of millions of pounds, dollars, euros or whatever else buying what they want when they want it.

Profligacy was anathema to earlier generations, of course. Our grandparents used to warn against this lifestyle, their motto having been, “If you don’t have the money to buy it, don’t buy it.”

But somewhere or other along the road we turned off away from that simple straight and narrow route and instead began to do things another way. Many have lived to regret that change, having discovered for themselves the wisdom of Mr Micawber’s oft-quoted, recipe for happiness as cited in Charles Dickens’ David Copperfield: “Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen pounds, nineteen shillings and six pence, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds, nought shillings and six pence, result misery.”

As long ago as 1732 physician and preacher Thomas Fuller warned: “Debt is the worst poverty.” Prophetic words.

And in William Shakespeare’s Hamlet, Polonius cautioned: “Neither a borrower nor a lender be, for loan oft loses both itself and friend.”

There is an even older proverb which urges, “Before borrowing money from a friend, decide which you need more.”

We really ought not to be too surprised, then, to find just how cripplingly undermining debt is; over the centuries – the millennia, even – the warnings against succumbing to it have been numerous, after all.

But at some point some person or group of people, who stood to make an awful lot of money from the process, decided things would be much better if we were all to start borrowing money – from them, of course – and spending it like it were our own. Never have the results of that philosophy been more obvious.

On January 13, 2016, a report by Simon Read appeared in The Independent beneath the headline, ‘Is the UK facing a debt disaster?’
It was a rhetorical question given that the opening paragraph read: ‘Shock new figures published today reveal that household debt has soared by two-fifths in just six months.’
It continued: ‘Aviva’s Family Finances report found that average debt now stands at £13,520 – a climb of £4,000 from £9,520 last summer. It is the highest levels seen in the quarterly survey for two-and-a-half years.

“It is concerning to see that household debt has grown to such levels,” said Caroline Siarkiewicz, head of UK debt advice for the Money Advice Service.

‘The rise in the figure – which doesn’t take account of mortgage debt – means the average amount owed is 24 per cent higher than in winter 2011 when the data was first recorded.

“The alarming levels of rising household debt, along with a recent reduction in income and savings levels, paints an uncertain picture for the family purse in 2016,” said Louise Colley, managing director, protection, Aviva Life UK.

‘Aviva’s reports makes for sobering reading. It suggests average credit card debt has climbed by more than a fifth in the last six months, from £1,960 in summer 2015 to £2,370 now. The amount owed on overdrafts has increased even more quickly, rising by almost two-fifths from £870 to £1,190.

‘Meanwhile, one in four families now owes money on a personal loan – that’s a rise of almost a quarter from a year ago – with an average outstanding balance of £2,080. Over the last five years, mortgage debt has also risen by a more than a fifth.’

So there, in those few paragraphs, you see all the problem areas identified – mortgages, credit cards, overdrafts and personal loans. Add payday loans to that quartet and you have a full house of debt in its various guises.

Benjamin Franklin once said: “Creditors have better memories than debtors.”

But the problem isn’t with debtors’ memories – it’s with their inability to pay, not least because we insist on spending money which we should instead be using to pay off what we already owe.

We borrow too much too readily in living beyond our means. And that translates as more going out than is coming in, resulting in misery as per Micawber.

If we are to escape it, debt must be managed. And almost certainly that will require help from an outsider with a lot of knowledge.

The good news is that such help is available from experts who know exactly what debt resolution entails and understand fully what, under the law, is required of a debtor. That’s a level of expertise most of us just don’t have.

Debt management is the answer to the question of how to get out of debt. So too is our commitment to the belief that debt relief is realistic and therefore can be achieved. Mortgage debt, credit card debt, unsecured loans, overdrafts – there is a solution for all of these.

There are different ways of achieving debt relief, though ultimately each will involve negotiation with creditors. YOU DO NOT HAVE TO DO THE NEGOTIATING. There are others who will act on your behalf.

But before they can do that, they and you have to sit down and have a very honest, to-the-point, no-nonsense, tell-it-like-is meeting to reveal the full extent of the problem and how it has come about.

Then, armed with that information, your adviser will come up with what amounts to a rescue plan designed not only to ensure your fiscal survival but to liberate you from the hardship in which currently you are entrapped. Getting free of debt isn’t so much a case of beating the wolf back from your door – it’s about making sure it never comes back to imprison you again.

Lenders listen to advisers, negotiators and facilitators they respect. If the debtor’s case is made to them by professionals of proven knowledge, they will do business.

Get Help With Debt certainly ticks those boxes. Typically they achieve 80% to 90% debt write-off for their clients, many of whom had feared  that they were beyond help.

Lenders know that a GHWD settlement proposal is only made after a thorough examination of all the facts – the size and nature of the debt, the circumstances whereby it has come about, income, outgoings, resultant ability – or inability – to pay, the precise type of loan(s) and the small print of the contract.

Their respect for GGHWD stems from experience of having negotiated with them in the past, plus the fact that they are Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)-licensed and regulated. In bankers’ eyes, that gives GHWD real status. It is also the client’s safeguard.

Loans can be re-negotiated. Loans can be written off. Banks know that attempts to recover debt take a lot of their time and money so they do the sums in weighing up how much of both they might have to spend pursuing something that ends up being irretrievable.

Loans are re-negotiated or written off every day of the week, with creditors ‘providing debt forgiveness’ to give the process its legal and technical title.
Get in touch now to speak to an expert!

Personal Debt, Do You Need An IVA?

Personal Debt: Do You Need An IVA?

Personal debt is a growing problem in the UK – and many financial forecasters are predicting that things could get a whole lot worse.

Earlier this year Louise Colley, managing director, protection, Aviva Life UK, warned:. “The alarming levels of rising household debt, along with a recent reduction in income and savings levels, paints an uncertain picture for the family purse in 2016.”

Personal debt has grown, in part due to record-low interest levels. Those have meant low-cost loans, with many having availed of the opportunity for so-called ‘cheap money’.

For many the day of reckoning has yet to come.

For others, however, it has arrived or will do so in the very near future. The number of ‘hits’ on the Get Help With Debt website confirms the level of public anxiety at this juncture.

And with so much uncertainty following the June 23 vote to leave the EU, a lot of UK citizens are keeping their fingers crossed that some of warnings as to what may happen a few months or years down the line fail to materialise.

The truth is that no-one knows for sure at this stage. It really is a ‘wait and see’ moment.

The likelihood is that personal debt will continue to be a major problem in the UK, leading to an increase in the number of Individual Voluntary Arrangements (IVAs) between those entrapped and those to whom they owe money advanced as unsecured loans.

An IVA is a formal debt solution enabling a debtor to pay back what he or she owes on unsecured loans – personal loans, credit cards and overdrafts – over an agreed period of time. This requires acceptance by 75% of the creditors.

And while an IVA is the best solution in certain situations, there are others in which a different course of action would be more appropriate and beneficial.

Get Help With Debt’s team of experts know what works best, where and when. For that reason they provide guidance best-suited to particular any given set of circumstances.

A typical IVA scenario is one in which money is owed to a number of creditors. That number may range from three to dozens.

If those debts are insurmountable, or if it is unrealistic for that debtor to continue to service an unfeasible volume of debts whilst trying to provide for their family, an IVA may well be the best solution to that problem.

An IVA can be a lump-sum settlement. Usually that money is raised through the debtor’s family or friends.

More typically, however, an IVA runs for a five-year period.

To qualify for an IVA you must be completely unable to repay your unsecured debts in a reasonable time, but able to make a reasonable monthly repayments towards clearing them.

.If  the IVA proposal is accepted  by the creditors, the borrower is required to meet all the repayment obligations to which he/she has committed himself/herself.

In negotiating an IVA, the whole premise is that it is both reasonable for you and affordable to you whilst acceptable to the creditors. But that means there is no wriggle room; it must be adhered to, without fail, from start to finish.

Provided the debtor keeps up his/her end of the bargain, creditors will do likewise. That means they will leave the debtor alone, so no more letters, phone calls or hassle.

And at the end of five years, provided the debtor has honoured the agreement, the creditors will write off any remaining debt. This can amount to a huge percentage of the original debt.

Because they know the law inside out, Get Help With Debt’s highly qualified personnel are equipped to negotiate best-case solutions to your debt problems.

In any given situation, they know what will work and what will not. So if an IVA is not the best solution, they will examine the other options to find which one is.

Always they start by contacting all of a client’s creditors to point out that the current situation is unaffordable, providing proof of why that is so.

At that, they will propose an interim arrangement to demonstrate willingness to pay what is affordable.

Meanwhile the team will work on a more permanent solution – an IVA, a debt management plan or bankruptcy.

The bottom line is that creditors are realists who know that they cannot get money where there is none. That is why they are willing to work with people whose knowledge, ability and integrity as negotiators they respect.

If, therefore, your case is presented by those your creditors recognise as being experts, it will be viewed much more favourably than would otherwise be true.

Use the contact details on the Get Help With Debt website to get advice on how best to solve your personal debt problems.

I Have Unaffordable Debt, Who Can Help Me?

I Have Unaffordable Debt, Who Can Help Me?

I have unaffordable debt, and I need help!

Debt debilitates people. It affects their physical and mental health, robs them of their self-respect and slowly, gradually, ultimately takes away their sense of well-being having first ended their hopes and dreams.

American financial author and television/radio personality Dave Ramsey advised: “You must gain control over your money or the lack of it will forever control you.”

As advice goes, it wasn’t too wide of the mark.

It has never been easier to accumulate debt. We are encouraged to do so all the time with the entire capitalist economic system now appearing to run on tick. As a result, tens of millions of people spend tens of millions of pounds, dollars, euros or whatever else buying what they want when they want it.

Profligacy was anathema to earlier generations, of course. Our grandparents used to warn against this lifestyle, their motto having been, “If you don’t have the money to buy it, don’t buy it.”

But somewhere or other along the road we turned off away from that simple straight and narrow route and instead began to do things another way.

Many have lived to regret that change, having discovered for themselves the wisdom of Mr Micawber’s oft-quoted, recipe for happiness as cited in Charles Dickens’ David Copperfield: “Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen pounds, nineteen shillings and six pence, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds, nought shillings and six pence, result misery.”

As long ago as 1732 physician and preacher Thomas Fuller warned: “Debt is the worst poverty.” Prophetic words.

And in William Shakespeare’s Hamlet, Polonius cautioned: “Neither a borrower nor a lender be, for loan oft loses both itself and friend.”

There is an even older proverb which urges, “Before borrowing money from a friend, decide which you need more.”

We really ought not to be too surprised, then, to find just how cripplingly undermining debt is; over the centuries – the millennia, even – the warnings against succumbing to it have been numerous, after all.

But at some point some person or group of people, who stood to make an awful lot of money from the process, decided things would be much better if we were all to start borrowing money – from them, of course – and spending it like it were our own. Never have the results of that philosophy been more obvious.

On January 13, 2016, a report by Simon Read appeared in The Independent beneath the headline, ‘Is the UK facing a debt disaster?’

It was a rhetorical question given that the opening paragraph read: ‘Shock new figures published today reveal that household debt has soared by two-fifths in just six months.’ It continued: ‘Aviva’s Family Finances report found that average debt now stands at £13,520 – a climb of £4,000 from £9,520 last summer. It is the highest levels seen in the quarterly survey for two-and-a-half years.
“It is concerning to see that household debt has grown to such levels,” said Caroline Siarkiewicz, head of UK debt advice for the Money Advice Service.

‘The rise in the figure – which doesn’t take account of mortgage debt – means the average amount owed is 24 per cent higher than in winter 2011 when the data was first recorded.

“The alarming levels of rising household debt, along with a recent reduction in income and savings levels, paints an uncertain picture for the family purse in 2016,” said Louise Colley, managing director, protection, Aviva Life UK.

‘Aviva’s reports makes for sobering reading. It suggests average credit card debt has climbed by more than a fifth in the last six months, from £1,960 in summer 2015 to £2,370 now. The amount owed on overdrafts has increased even more quickly, rising by almost two-fifths from £870 to £1,190.

‘Meanwhile, one in four families now owes money on a personal loan – that’s a rise of almost a quarter from a year ago – with an average outstanding balance of £2,080. Over the last five years, mortgage debt has also risen by a more than a fifth.’

So there, in those few paragraphs, you see all the problem areas identified – mortgages, credit cards, overdrafts and personal loans. Add payday loans to that quartet and you have a full house of debt in its various guises.

Benjamin Franklin once said: “Creditors have better memories than debtors.”

But the problem isn’t with debtors’ memories – it’s with their inability to pay, not least because we insist on spending money which we should instead be using to pay off what we already owe.

We borrow too much too readily in living beyond our means. And that translates as more going out than is coming in, resulting in misery as per Micawber.

If we are to escape it, debt must be managed. And almost certainly that will require help from an outsider with a lot of knowledge.

The good news is that such help is available from experts who know exactly what debt resolution entails and understand fully what, under the law, is required of a debtor. That’s a level of expertise most of us just don’t have.

Debt management is the answer to the question of how to get out of debt. So too is our commitment to the belief that debt relief is realistic and therefore can be achieved. Mortgage debt, credit card debt, unsecured loans, overdrafts – there is a solution for all of these.

There are different ways of achieving debt relief, though ultimately each will involve negotiation with creditors. YOU DO NOT HAVE TO DO THE NEGOTIATING, HOWEVER. There are others who will act on your behalf.

But before they can do that, they and you have to sit down and have a very honest, to-the-point, no-nonsense, tell-it-like-is meeting to reveal the full extent of the problem and how it has come about.

Then, armed with that information, your adviser(s) will come up with what amounts to a rescue plan designed not only to ensure your fiscal survival but to liberate you from the hardship in which currently you are entrapped. Getting free of debt isn’t so much a case of beating the wolf back from your door – it’s about making sure it never comes back to imprison you again.

Lenders listen to advisers, negotiators and facilitators they respect. If the debtor’s case is made to them by professionals of proven knowledge, they will do business.

Get Help With Debt certainly tick those boxes. Typically they achieve 80% to 90% debt write-off for their clients, many of whom had feared  that they were beyond help.

Lenders know that a GHWD settlement proposal is only made after a thorough examination of all the facts – the size and nature of the debt, the circumstances whereby it has come about, income, outgoings, resultant ability – or inability – to pay, the precise type of loan(s) and the small print of the contract.

Their respect for GHWD stems from experience of having negotiated with them in the past, plus the fact that they are Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)-licensed and regulated. In bankers’ eyes, THAT gives GHWD real status. It is also the client’s safeguard.

Loans can be re-negotiated. Loans can be written off. Banks know that attempts to recover debt take a lot of their time and money so they do the sums in weighing up how much of both they might have to spend pursuing something that ends up being irretrievable.

Loans are re-negotiated or written off every day of the week, with creditors ‘providing debt forgiveness’ to give the process its legal and technical title.

Get in touch now if you need help with unaffordable  debt!

I Need To Get Out Of Debt, Can You Help?

I Need To Get Out Of Debt

How Can I Get Out Of Debt?

Anybody can get into debt. It really isn’t difficult; we can do that all by ourselves, no assistance needed.

But getting out of debt is altogether different. Here the help of others who understand the numerous and often highly complex laws on borrowing, lending, debt, repayment, contracts, non-payment penalties,  the rights of creditors and borrowers alike et al,  is almost certainly going to be essential. There is a maze to be navigated and only those who know how to do that emerge from it intact.

The assistance of experts is vital in speeding up certain things in the debtor’s favour – and, equally importantly, slowing down other disadvantageous elements in order to keep the wolf from the door and buy time in which to resolve matters.

Debt relief is the goal and debt management is the route to achieving it. It’s a step by step process in which the knowledge and negotiating skills of an expert in debt advice play the key part. It’s a simple fact that some areas of life require the input of those who, by virtue of their know-how, are best equipped to cope

The numbers of daily hits on ‘how to get out of debt’ sites confirm the scale of the problem and underline the stress to which indebtedness evidently leads.

Millions of people in this country are up to their eyes in debt, much of it of the credit card variety, witness the endless volume of on-line traffic heading to sites offering advice and help on that particular subject. The ‘spend now, pay later’ lifestyle comes at a price. Ask any financial adviser or doctor as to the cost when people start to realise they are in over their heads.

In such cases credit card consolidation with 0% interest is an option – and a very good one. Provided, that is, you are scrupulous in maintaining the repayments. Because f you aren’t – if you default by even one day – you move from enjoying 0% to being hammered with an interest rate in the region of 30% in the blink of an eye. And at that moment you are right dragged back to square one. Think worst case scenario snakes and ladders. These guys take no prisoners…

That totally derailing change in your status can be as a result of something as simple as the loss of a few days’ wages as a result of illness or a reduction in those overtime hours on which you were depending.

So if you are in debt, of whatever kind, you need help. Your first port of call must be to consult advisers with a proven track record.

Possibly the most important question you can ask of any company or individual offering debt relief, debt management or debt solutions is this: “Are you FCA (Financial Conduct Authority) licensed and regulated?”

If the answer to that question is ‘Yes’, then you are in good hands. If it is ‘No’, thank them for their time, bid them farewell and make your exit.

Knowing that you and your interests are being represented by people of integrity as well as ability is another ‘must’. You need to know that those to whom you are entrusting your future don’t only know what they are doing, but that they are completely trustworthy in terms of how they conduct their business.

Why is that? Because while knowledge in itself is impressive, without the integrity which transforms it into wisdom, it is hollow.  Dietrich Bonhoeffer hit the nail on the head when he said: “The best-informed man is not necessarily the wisest. Indeed there is a danger that precisely in the multiplicity of his knowledge he will lose sight of what is essential. To recognise the significant in the factual is wisdom.”

Obviously the nature and amount of debt – and of those institutions or individuals to whom it is owed – varies from person to person. So, too, does the simplicity or complexity of the overall picture.

Experience shows that few people with debt problems owe to just one lender. Ill-advised, uncontrolled borrowing is a downward spiral in which the borrower ends up taking on more and more debt in the hope of staying ahead. The end point in this comes when they realise it has become impossible to pay what they owe.

At that point there are salient questions to be asked and answered. Who is applying most pressure? To what extent, if any, have they been willing to accommodate you to date? Are their court rulings against you? Do you ‘own’ your home and, if so, what is the nature of that ‘ownership’? What type of mortgage do you have? Are your mortgage repayments up to date? If not, what is the extent of your arrears? What other loans/debs do you have?

Good, conscientious, legitimate, professional advisers will sit down with you to examine your circumstances fully in order to construct a debt management plan that is (a) workable, (b) realistic, (c) acceptable to the creditor(s), and (d) goal-achieving. Then based on your income and outgoings – which determine what you can and can’t afford – the law and their negotiating skills, they will attempt to come up with a proposal which you will be able to afford and which will see your legal obligations are fulfilled.

Different loan types come with different rules, terms and conditions attached. A pay-day loan – make that ‘debt’ – is not the same as a mortgage, nor is an overdraft the same as a HP agreement. There is all manner of small print, minutiae and detail to be sifted in the course of extricating a debtor from the mess in which he or she finds him-or-herself.

The role of the debt adviser – who is on your side and is acting with your interests at heart – is to go through the problem with a fine fiscal and legal tooth comb to discover the exact nature of the problem and then decide on the best way of addressing it. If they are experts, they will know things most others do not, be they legal nuances or escape clauses which can be activated by extenuating circumstances.

If you have put off seeking help in the hope of a scratch card win or a blinding light revelation as to how to make a fortune overnight, maybe the time to stop kidding yourself has come, not least because you certainly aren’t kidding your creditors.

So get real and start taking action now on the road to recovery. You might just be pleasantly surprised to learn just how quick and pain-free it can be. As for the sense of relief, you can’t put a price on that.

I Need Debt Help

I Need Debt Help!

Do you need debt help?

Do you need expert and trustworthy debt help? Rhetorical question really, isn’t it?

It’s a bit like asking if someone with a toothache needs a dentist, or somebody with a broken leg needs a doctor? The words ‘stating the obvious’ spring to mind.

We would not dream of asking anyone other than a qualified dental surgeon  to treat a dental problem, nor would we ever suggest that an enthusiastic but untrained amateur should be entrusted with tending to our shattered femur or tibia. So why on earth would we entrust anyone other than an expert on debt and its many convoluted ramifications to counsel us on that subject? Bizarre idea.

Debt is a complex matter to which a number of separate but related issues contribute. In view of the problems it is going to create for them, there can’t be too many, if indeed there are any, who would knowingly and wilfully choose indebtedness – and all of the misery, worry and despair  that flows from it – as their preferred economic status.  One would imagine that almost certainly they will have slipped slowly but ever-deeper into debt rather than having jumped gleefully into the quagmire.

There will be plenty of well-meaning, would-be Alvin Halls happy to let you have their tuppence worth of advice on debt issues. Relatives, work colleagues, that bloke next door, your man in the pub, that other guy whom you know who will tell you that he “had a problem just like yours.”

You wouldn’t listen to them if they were sharing their views on any other important matter which, if it is to be properly understood, would entail a lengthy period of study followed by examinations designed to confirm knowledge of it, would you? So ignore them.

The noun, debt, incorporates a wide range of versions and sub-divisions. Any borrowed money constitutes debt, be it of the secured or unsecured  variety – mortgages, overdrafts, credit cards and loans in whatever shape of form they come including those from friends, relatives, pay-day outfits or pawn-brokers whose re-emergence and proliferation on the main thoroughfares of our towns and cities underlines the seriousness of the plight in which so many now find themselves.

In 2015 more than 9,000 people in Northern Ireland sought debt help from Citizens Advice. And research into the Northern Ireland debt problem, conducted by the Money Advice Service last year, found that 217,000 people – roughly 15% of the adult population – were over-indebted, that is in over their heads.

In January 2016 a Belfast Telegraph report by Claire McNeilly stated: ‘Almost 250,000 people in Northern Ireland are facing a debt time bomb – but are doing little or nothing about it.

‘Families account for 62% of those currently in serious financial difficulty and, in over half of these cases, both parents are working.

‘New figures obtained by the Belfast Telegraph from Citizens Advice have laid bare the shocking extent of the problem, and the agency has said it expects the crisis to escalate in the coming months following the Christmas excesses.

‘There are also concerns that the level of reliance on debt to make ends meet is beginning to increase again as the economy slowly begins to recover.

‘Money Advice programme co-ordinator at Citizens Advice, Kathy McKenna, said people should get help sooner rather than later.

“The Bank of England’s Money and Credit report for November revealed that the amount of cash borrowed by consumers ahead of Christmas was the highest that it has been in any month since February 2008, at the height of the credit crunch,” she said.

“Many households, particularly those on low incomes and those vulnerable to income shocks, may not be able to handle the extra borrowing. Citizens Advice is expecting an increase in debt problems in the new year as a result of this.

“Our experience shows that people generally wait a year before seeking out debt advice. However, waiting means their financial situation can spiral even further out of control, leaving them deeper in debt.”

It is significant that Citizens Advice’s Kathy McKenna urged people to get debt help sooner rather than later. It is significant, too, that she did not advocate working it out yourself. That suggests the agency’s Money Advice programme co-ordinator recognises the need to seek assistance from those who, as a result of having encountered them on a daily basis. are familiar with such problems.

That is because debt does not just go away. It does not shrink, diminish or disappear. It remains and while it does it grows, grinding people down by virtue of the fact that although they feel its grip on them and their families tightening, they imagine themselves to be powerless.

They are wrong; they are not powerless – there is debt help, there is advice, there are options and there is a real possibility of a return to better times.

It is important you realise  that a good, caring, qualified debt adviser is not going to judge you but is going to help you. Know, too, that whatever your problem and whatever the size of your debt it is highly unlikely that your adviser will not have dealt with something that dwarfs it.

Negotiating a route out of debt requires co-operation and trust on the part of you and your adviser. Together you must agree on a route, a structured plan and a commitment to seeing it through.

Exactly how it can be tackled and the length of time it will take from start to finish depends on the scale and type of the debt(s), the nature of the contract(s) into which you have entered – and with whom – your income and the essential outgoings (food, fuel, clothing, transport, energy, phone, rates, insurances, car tax) for yourself and your dependants. Who are those dependants and what are their ages?

Are you a home-owner and, if so, are you in negative equity? If the answer to that question is ‘yes’, that too is added to your debt. What is the nature of your mortgage and from which bank or building society did you borrow? What is the state of play with your mortgage repayments?

When the answers to these questions are known, the possibilities will be assessed in order to decide  how best to set about rescuing you. A proposed solution can only proceed with your agreement; your advisor cannot go ahead without your signed consent. The plan must be acceptable to you.

There are four main methods of dealing with personal debt – debt consolidation, a debt management plan (DMP), an individual voluntary arrangement (IVA) and bankruptcy. In each case there are pros and cons so the aim in working alongside your adviser is to choose what is the best option for you in your particular circumstances.

After much experience in this field, Get Help With Debt – Belfast-based financial advisers – believe IVA to be the best solution to the problems presented by most of their clients.

Why? Because it is a negotiated settlement and because it stops your debt growing by freezing interest and penalty charges on each of your unsecured loans. Ultimately it writes off debt you are unable to pay and, importantly, it means you avoid bankruptcy.

This is done via a settlement proposal which, acting on your behalf, GHWD will present to your creditors. Your representatives set out the facts and figures and in almost 100% of cases – last year they failed in just one – they achieve a write-off of 80 to 90% of their client’s debt.

If that sounds like the sort of help and advice from which you would benefit, contact GHWD now.

We Have Mortgage Debt Solutions, For You!

Why Our Mortgage Debt Solutions Are Better For You

If you are a victim of negative equity, you need help.

Not just advice, but proper hands-on help. That means the active, participatory intervention of experts who take the lead and lighten the load on your neck and shoulders by making YOUR problem THEIRS and then delivering a positive outcome on YOUR behalf. There is little point in you wasting time worrying about things you cannot change. Right now you may be deeply entrapped in negative equity and unable to move because of that fact. Understandably you are hugely stressed and wondering what fate may await you. It’s guesswork, of course. You really don’t know where you stand legally so you have no idea of what to expect.

But what you DO know is that your home is worth a lot less than when you bought it, which means that if you were to sell now the price fetched would be well short of the amount required to clear the outstanding balance on the mortgage you borrowed in order to buy it. You can spend hours, days, weeks, months worrying about this. But to what end?

The very fact that you are reading this article suggests you could be in the midst of just such a crisis right now.

You know exactly how this feels, don’t you? It’s a situation in which your heart sinks each time you see the postman or woman approach your door. It’s the same when an unknown number comes up on your phone. In other words, it’s a case of non-stop worry leading to the sort of anxiety that slowly erodes your confidence, eats away your self-respect and finally wears you down to the point where you no longer trust your own judgement on anything or believe in your ability to solve this huge problem. As you now see it, you’re a loser.

It probably doesn’t help to know that you aren’t alone. If you are in negative equity, you are one of 63,000 such householders here in Northern Ireland. That’s a whopping 41% of home-owners. So here is some very welcome good news – in the eyes of Negative Equity Northern Ireland, you are not a loser. Instead you’re an unfortunate victim of circumstances you did not create. That isn’t someone who deserves to be written off.

But rather than struggling on your own with a problem you almost certainly cannot solve, wouldn’t it make a lot more sense to seek the help of results-proven experts who pride themselves on their ability to find solutions for people who are deeply ensnared in debt, hugely stressed as a result and now wondering what they can do?

Because they are experts, Negative Equity Northern Ireland know a lot of things you don’t. They are highly skilled, time-served professionals who, as well as being very well educated in these matters, have years of experience in the fields of house prices, the wide range of mortgages available, interest rates and everything else that goes with home ownership. That is the level of know-how required in your situation because this is complex – way too complex – territory for anyone who doesn’t know exactly what they are doing.

So, question: realistically, how much do YOU feel YOU know about these things? If you have answered honestly, the chances are you will have said, “Not a lot.” That’s a good answer, because it is the truth. And since it is the truth it may just be the first vital step on the way out of the negative equity maze in which you find yourself. So here’s another question: why continue to wrestle with matters of finance you do not fully understand and issues of law of which you may be totally unaware, particularly when the lenders and creditors against whom you are hoping to square up are big-money organisations backed by legal specialists?

Professional heavyweight versus an amateur featherweight? Put like that it’s a bit of a mismatch, isn’t it?

But Negative Equity Northern Ireland are in the business of levelling the playing field. Staffed by men and women with backgrounds in banking, they know how lenders think and operate. Having worked previously for the other side so to speak, they know what banks and building societies will and won’t accept. And because they know the law, too, they are conversant with what can and cannot be done by either side.

All the major lenders are aware of and respect that know-how, which is why they are willing to sit down with Negative Equity Northern Ireland’s negotiators and find a solution. Now, there are advisors who offer advice – and sometimes it is very good advice, too. But, alas, there it ends. In other words, they inform you of your options and then leave you to get on with implementing the best of those. Well. good luck with that.

Negative Equity Northern Ireland, however, don’t leave you to paddle your own figurative canoe, not least because they know metaphoric canoeists would be in real danger of drifting up that well known creek having lost their paddle on the way. Not a good place to find oneself. So Negative Equity Northern Ireland don’t just offer advice, point you in the right direction, wish you all the best and wave you goodbye as you head off upstream to encounter your waiting lenders.

Instead, armed with their in-depth knowledge of house prices, mortgages, interest rates and home ownership, and buoyed up by their years of experience in banking, THEY get into YOUR canoe and, acting on YOUR behalf, head for the negotiation rapids. These are rough waters in which novices are unlikely to survive. But experts, who have been through these waters before, know where the rocks are, know what to avoid and know how to go with the flow.

From start to finish, Negative Equity Northern Ireland’s staff put themselves in the front line for you. That means you are kept out of the battle.

They do the work for you, checking, researching and re-checking before coming up with a package that gives you a future because it is acceptable to your lenders/creditors. How and why? Because the banks respect NENI well enough to know that what is on offer is the most realistic, honest and fair outcome available.

The proof of the pudding? Well, NENI recently managed to negotiate a 90% negative equity write-off for a Belfast family. That’s a life-transforming result.

Are they glad they called us? What do you think?

Property Debt, What Are My Options?

Property Debt, What Are My Options?

Property Debt is a massive problem in today’s world. National debt, company debt, corporate debt, property debt, personal debt on secured and unsecured loans.

In what has become a way of life, we spend more than we earn. In many cases, a lot more. Far too much more, in fact. Mortgages and property debt play a big part in what we owe.

Certainly Northern Ireland is not immune. Like every other country in the so-called free world – how ironic – there is widespread debt and a glut of the problems that flow from it. This is not new, of course. As long ago as 1732, Thomas Fuller was warning his contemporaries: “Debt is the worst poverty.”

But you can go back a lot further, far beyond Fuller to the Old Testament books of 2 Kings, David and Proverbs where you will find censures against debt as a concept. Northern Ireland debt has reached record levels with an estimated 250,000 of its citizens now in serious trouble, 62% of that total made up of families in which, in over half of cases,  both parents are working.

Figures reveal that the amount borrowed in November 2015 – for  Christmas – was the highest for any month since February 2008 when the pre-recession credit blow-out reached its peak. And now borrowing – just to make ends meet – is rising again, giving rise to fears over borrowers’ ability to repay. Low income families are particularly vulnerable. Already it is believed that 217,000 adults – about 15% of the Northern Ireland population – are in greater debt than they can handle realistically. That means that if they were businesses rather than human beings, they would be deemed ‘no longer be viable’.

Unfortunately, human nature is to put off facing up to the problem for as long as possible. Denial, pride, fear, embarrassment, a sense of the perceived hopelessness of their situation and maybe a combination of each of those play a huge part  in the process.

Kathy McKenna  of Citizens Advice, has warned: “Sometimes it’s only when the situation gets out of control – for example when a client receives a court letter or eviction notice, or cannot get access to any more credit – that they will come seeking advice. Our experience shows that people generally wait a year before seeking out debt advice. However, waiting means their financial situation can spiral even further out of control, leaving them deeper in debt.”

Everywhere you look, it seems, debt problems abound, with negative equity and other debts accrued elsewhere combining to produce a particularly toxic cocktail.

Negative equity debt – where your home now is worth less than the mortgage outstanding on it – is a huge source of concern in the overall Northern Ireland scenario.

True, house prices have begun to rise so, finally, there is some welcome growth in the market. But that must be viewed against the backdrop which saw prices in Northern Ireland plummet far more steeply and quickly than elsewhere in the UK. Even in some areas where house prices have increased, they are only half-way back to the level in those days of seemingly endless money and totally affordable mortgages.

Make no mistake; we are playing catch-up – and look likely to be doing so for a long time to come. Meanwhile life goes on and ensuring that it does remains a major problem – but nevertheless the priority – for tens of thousands. Many want and require answers to just a couple of basic questions.

The first of these is: are there negative equity solutions?

‘Yes’ is the answer. From January 1 to June 30, 2015, Negative Equity NI succeeded in negotiating debt settlements which averaged 12.4%. That means that where the negative equity resulted in a £80,000 clearance shortfall at the time of selling, the average settlement was £9,920. In other words, £70,080 of property debt was written off as a result of voluntary, properly-negotiated-and-agreed-by-both-parties settlements. While selling the property to settle the property debt is pretty much inevitable, that does not mean you cannot buy another home, though that will depend on how the lender views your particular circumstances and the length of time involved in resolving your negative equity debt problem.

Your ability to buy will include such considerations as your credit rating, income, deposit funds and exposure to other debt. Here too Negative Equity NI will advise and assist you through each step of the process.

The second big question to which people need an answer is this: is there a solution to my mortgage problems and, if so, are there options, too?

Here, too, the answer is ‘yes’ and ‘yes’.

Normally there will be three options and having worked alongside you to find out your precise circumstances, difficulties and hopes, Negative Equity NI staff then will have the necessary information to arrive at the best-possible outcome for you.

Extending the term and/or changing the nature of the mortgage where, clearly, it was totally unsuitable and therefore ought not to have been sold to you are possibilities. So, too, is selling the house  in order to bring about a realistic, manageable debt settlement.

If you are in unaffordable property debt or are having problems with your mortgage it may be worth noting that the repossession rate in Northern Ireland in 2015 was four times higher than elsewhere in the UK. And it is now predicted that the number of Northern Ireland households at risk of repossession will rise from 15,000 in 2015 to 32,000 by 2018.

Negative Equity NI provide help in the form of advice and representation for homeowners in negative equity or those with mortgage problems. They have an unrivalled record when it comes to negotiating with banks and building societies on behalf of customers. If you think you may need help, it’s worth contacting us now for a free consultation.

We Can Help With Your Mortgage Debt Problems

Who do you turn to if your mortgage debt is piling up?

With staff working on over 300 clients in different stages of their case at any one time, we at Negative Equity NI are continually striving to do the best for those who are struggling with mortgage debt. Since the start of 2016 we’ve written off £1million in personal property debt for our clients.

A total of £1million written off for 15 cases across NI and the mainland. The average write off is £66.6k, which equals almost an 80% write off for our average client. All cases and outcomes are based on varying factors such as affordability and change in circumstance but our highest write off so far this year was a whopping 96% for a client with a Santander mortgage meaning she only paid £2,200 of an outstanding negative equity balance of £61,781. Now that’s something to boast about!

So, What is Negative Equity?

Negative equity means your home is worth less than the mortgage currently still owed on the property. In other words – say you bought the house for £150,000 in 2008 and it is now in 2016 only valued at £100,000, you would be in £50,000 of negative equity. If you were to sell your house for £100,000 you would still owe the bank £50,000.

Sound scary? You’re not alone. Currently some 41% of households in Northern Ireland are affected by negative equity. That’s the highest percentage for any region in the UK with some 68,000 Northern Ireland households caught in the trap.

Perhaps you bought at the height of the boom and now it is time to move to a larger property due to an expanding family. It could be that your work circumstances have changed, leaving mortgage repayments more of a struggle. Maybe you have divorced or are in the process of divorcing, meaning you wish to sell the property to move on. Negative equity doesn’t solely apply to single properties either – some bought a second property at the height of the boom believing it to be an excellent investment, rather than the drain it is now. On top of these woes, many have an interest only mortgage, meaning they are effectively renting the property off the bank. But what happens when the interest rates rise? Or the term comes to an end and all the capital is owed on the house?

What Can You Do?
Regardless of your circumstance we can offer help. A free no obligation consultation is available in our Belfast based office at Mount Charles to discuss your mortgage debt problems and we can take it from there.

If you want to hear about our success stories, take a look below at the testimonial from a very happy client

Larne Couple, NRAM Mortgage in £66,000 Negative Equity

We’ve recently helped a couple from Larne with an NRAM mortgage who were in £66,000 of negative equity – we were able to negotiate a 90% write off.

“We approached Negative Equity NI due to a change in our personal circumstances.

We unfortunately had bought our property at the height of the boom, and subsequently were heavily in negative equity, which meant that we were unable to switch our mortgage to a better deal, or sell the property in the usual manner. The service we received was first class, Natasha (case manager) kept us up to date with all the developments & through negotiations with our lender, secured a write off of the negative equity on the property, with a settlement of 10%. I would highly recommend this company, to anyone who has a property sitting in significant negative equity.

Many thanks to the team at Negative Equity NI”.

If you’d like to talk to somebody about your mortgage debt, contact us today or give us a call on 028 90236074.