Money and benefit welfare advice

If you are starting to miss bill payments, don’t ignore the problem. You need to take action quickly to stop the situation getting any worse. Let us help you so your debt doesn't spiral out of hand.

Debt advice and budgeting



What to do if you fall into debt

Let's Talk Money logoIt can be really easy to let debt spiral out of hand. Before you know it, you no longer have control of the money you owe and you could be at risk of losing your home if you fall behind on your rent payments.

A lot of people bury their head in the sand not knowing who to turn to if they feel they are drowning in debt. But we understand the pressures our customers face, especially those who are struggling with redundancies, benefit cuts and rising costs of food and energy bills.

If you are starting to miss bill payments, don’t ignore the problem. You need to take action quickly to stop the situation getting any worse.

Get Free, Independent Advice

It’s important you are able to speak to an expert about your situation as they can give you the support you need (whatever that may be) to help get you out of debt.

We work with StepChange who can provide free expert debt advice based on each individuals personal circumstances. They provide free telephone debt information and advice for anyone experiencing debt problems, including payday loans and bank debts. StepChange offer advice on all Scottish debt solutions including a debt arrangement scheme, trust deed, minimal assets process or sequestration.

Their website provides a list of debt advice tools to help people get free anonymous debt help 24 hours a day. These range from a 60-second debt test, to quickly assess the scale of the problem, to Debt Remedy, a full online debt advice and budgeting tool that provides a personal action plan to help people take their first steps out of debt.

You can also get in contact with StepChange by telephoning their free debt helpline on 0800 138 1111 which is open Mon-Fri 8am-8pm and Sat 8am-4pm (calls free from landline and mobile) Alternatively you can request a call back.

When making contact each individual will be asked how they heard about Step Change. You can advise that you were made aware of their services through Irvine Housing Association. Please note that we only receive information on the total number of tenants that StepChange have supported, their advice is given confidentially and no personal information is disclosed to us regarding individual cases.

Preparing to meet a Debt Advisor

Make a list of all the people you owe money to (your creditors) and how much you owe. Find the original loan agreement, or the last statement or bill you’ve been sent. If you’ve been sent court papers or letters that seem urgent, get help straight away. You’ll also need proof of the income that you’re getting, such as your pay slips or benefit statements.

Useful Tips

√  Do get professional advice Χ  Don’t ignore the problem
√   Do make a list of everyone you owe money to and let them know that you are having problems Χ  Don’t borrow more money to repay your debts
√   Do prioritise debts and pay these first


We all know how hard it can be to make our money last week by week. If you find that this happens to you regularly, it may be worthwhile working out a budget which you can stick to. This will help you to keep on top of your money and will help you to plan for any unexpected emergencies.

You can also get in touch with our Affordability Officer, Cath Stone on 07974 751 084.