Local resident Chantelle, is 23 with a young son. Struggling to make ends meet, she got into serious financial difficulties through payday loans and being in debt with catalogues, store cards and overdraft charges.
“I got into debt with payday loans for silly reasons,” says Chantelle. “I had no one to ask for some extra cash to carry me until next payday, so I borrowed a small amount. The payment came straight out of my bank when I got paid, and because I was then really short on cash I took another payday loan out.
“When I first used payday loans I had no children and no home to pay for - I was just using the money on clothes, nights out and things that I could have saved up for in the first place. When I did get my own place, I was still stuck with paying my payday loans back, and as I had rent and household bills to pay I had to borrow an even larger amount to help pay the bills.
“When I realised I could not afford to pay the whole amount back in one go, I cancelled the payment and tried to hide from them. I ignored calls and letters and when they eventually got in touch with me I ended up with a debt of over double of what I borrowed. I was in this situation with two other payday loan companies.
“I also got myself into debt with store cards and catalogues when I should’ve saved up to buy things with my own money. Now I look at things I no longer like thinking ‘I’m still paying for you.’ I did the same thing with these debts - I tried to hide from them when things got out of control,
“I was very bad with budgeting too, as I had little control over my money. I felt so down and did not know what I was going to do until Mind Your Money came along and rescued me. I was able to open up to them about all my financial difficulties and they helped me straighten out all my paperwork.
“A big part of the problem, as a young adult going through financial difficulties, was that I was worried to seek help as I thought I was silly for getting all this credit. I was afraid to admit I was in trouble, I felt embarrassed about my situation and I thought that if I ignored my problems they will eventually go away, but they didn’t.
“My wages were gone in less then a week and I never had anybody I felt I could to turn to to say ‘look I’m absolutely hopeless at budgeting’. Since Mind Your Money came into my life I have never been happier to discuss my debts. It takes time for people to admit they have these silly debts, and they may feel like they’re on their own and need to hide away from the truth. But help is out there, and Mind Your Money’s friendly approach meant I could confide in them, and trust them to help me.”