Don’t do a Darwin if in debt

Callcredit provides advice to those in financial difficulty.

The current court case of John and Anne Darwin is a harsh reminder about the lengths some people may go to in order to break free of debt and lead a more financially stable lifestyle.

The sharp rise in the cost of fuel and food, combined with fears over falling house prices, has meant that consumers all over the country are feeling the pinch. But like John Darwin, 57, it is the over 55 year olds whose debt levels are accelerating faster than any other age group (1). Negativity amongst this age group has peaked as a result, with 41 per cent describing their attitude towards their finances as pessimistic (2).

With the older generation falling into more and more debt, it is worrying to hear that a shocking 16 per cent of those aged 55 and above are financially unaware and cannot define their debt levels (3).

Mark Ward, consumer debt expert at Callcredit comments,

"In order to avoid having to take drastic measures to steer clear of debt, it is essential that people get their finances into shape. With consumers continuing to borrow and debt levels continuing to rise, we advise consumers to get a better understanding of their financial commitments through checking their credit report.

"Managing personal finances and keeping on top of repayments through this credit crunch is the number one financial challenge for consumers over the coming 12 months. , =By checking your credit report you can get a clear view of how much you owe and potentially see where savings can be made."


Top tips on how to avoid the Darwin route

1) Try to understand how much you owe, and to who, by checking your credit report (www.callcreditcheck.com) - this will give you all the details of your debt and your credit score in an easy-to-read format

2) Don't bury your head in the sand and let the debts mount up - seek advice from a professional organisation such as the Citizens Advice Bureau or Consumer Credit Counselling Service

3) Use cash rather than cards - that way you'll realise exactly how much you're spending!



1 - According to the Consumer Credit Counselling Service
2 - Figures are from YouGov Plc. May - June 2008
3 - Research was conducted online by YouGov on behalf of Callcredit - September 2007

About Callcredit:

Callcredit (www.callcredit.co.uk) is the UK's most innovative, state-of-the art credit reference agency, with an extensive range of information and value added services for businesses and individuals.
• Callcredit Check provides consumers with online access to the details of their credit file at www.callcreditcheck.com
• Callcredit has harnessed state-of-the-art information technology with an unrivalled knowledge of the industry's needs to develop a range of innovative information solutions. Solutions that are enabling major lenders and a host of other blue chip companies to address regulatory requirements, make better credit decisions, target new customers more effectively and manage existing customers more profitably.
• Callcredit is one of six core businesses that form the Callcredit Information Group. The other five are:
• Database management company EuroDirect
Market analysis firm GMAP Consulting
• Online payment service provider, Legatio
• Scorecard development and affordability assessment specialist DecisionMetrics
• Marketing services and database specialist, Broadsystem

• Following the publication of Sir James Crosby's report, Callcredit has joined forces with the other two UK credit reference agencies to offer expert advice for victims of ID fraud. This joined up approach will mean that victims can contact Callcredit who will then alert the other two agencies to the fraud on their behalf. Our ID fraud team will also work with victims to contact all lenders and ensure that fraudulent information is removed and the consumers' credit history is fully restored.