What can we do to stop spiralling into debt?

28 January 2016

At present he receives no benefits but does have a private pension. I have had to give up work to look after him and have applied for Carer’s Allowance but have not yet received it. We are struggling financially and have had to sell our home to pay off our debts.

The problem is there has been a hold up with the sale and we will not receive the £100,000 from the house for several weeks. We have a very bad credit report but how can I get a short-term loan to pay back once the money from the house has come through? We have no money coming in at all for the next three weeks."


"In the first instance, your best option is to seek free and independent advice from a charity-run service such as National Debtline to talk through your financial situation with a trained adviser, who can go into greater detail than can be provided here.

This will give you a clearer idea of the various options open to you and how to get your finances back on track.

One possible route could be approaching your bank for a temporary overdraft.

Any credit checks involved will be more straightforward as your bank will already hold plenty of data about you. It stands in your favour that you will soon be depositing £100,000 from the sale of the house, so you would hope that the bank will want to keep your custom.

If you are a member of a credit union, you could consider approaching it about a short-term loan, and if you aren’t already a member, some credit unions will now allow you to borrow without having saved with them previously. Precise criteria will vary from one union to the next, so it is worth visiting the website of the Association of British Credit Unions Limited to find out more.

Also consider speaking to your service providers to make them aware of your situation to see if, where appropriate, there is any scope for your payments to be deferred until the funds from the sale of your house are released.

You mention applying for Carer’s Allowance but you should also speak to Turn2us, a charity that can help you find out whether there are any other benefits to which you or your husband might be entitled."

Dennis Hussey works at the National Debtline.