More than 330,000 people in the East Midlands are relying on credit, including payday loans, unauthorised overdrafts, credit cards or other loans, to help pay their rent or mortgage, a new survey from Shelter reveals today.
The results reveal the spiral of debt that people are falling into in order to keep a roof over their head.
The YouGov survey carried out last month for Shelter asked 4,014 people in Great Britain if they had used a payday loan, unauthorised overdraft, other loan or credit card to help pay their rent or mortgage in the last 12 months. The results showed that 9% of people living in the East Midlands said yes, representing a figure of 335,284 people.
The charity warns that the New Year could bring with it a risk of homelessness, for those who are struggling with their housing costs and is urging anyone worried about their debts to make seeking early debt advice their New Year’s resolution.
Shelter has a network of specialist advice services,a free telephone helpline and online advice available at shelter.org.uk, including a new budget calculator.
Campbell Robb, Chief Executive of Shelter, said: “These shocking findings show the extent to which thousands of households across the East Midlands are desperately struggling to keep their home.
“Turning to short-term payday loans to help pay for the cost of housing is totally unsustainable. It can quickly lead to debts snowballing out of control and can lead to eviction or repossession and ultimately homelessness.
“Every two minutes someone in Britain faces the nightmare of losing their home. We urge every single one of these people now relying on credit to help pay their rent or mortgage to urgently seek advice.”