The conclusion of a new report, is so staggering that it
needs time for the true ramifications to sink in. According to debt advisors and solution
providers, Thomas Charles, there are 1.7 million adults in the UK with debt problems,
and no less than one million of them are “quite likely’, ‘very likely’ or ‘ certain’ to declare
themselves bankrupt or take out an IVA (Individual Voluntary Arrangement).

The research, conducted by YouGov in April, established that 19 per cent of the adult
population, around 8 million, has unsecured debts of £10,000 and over. The research focused in
depth on a sample of 1366 adults, with high levels of unsecured debt, from this group and revealed
a worrying picture of debt repayment problems and likely personal insolvency.

Thirteen per cent of those interviewed said they were ‘quite likely’, ‘very likely’ or ‘certain’ to
declare themselves bankrupt or take out an IVA. This equates to over one million adults across
Great Britain. The latest figures from the DTI show that there were 78,000 personal insolvencies in
England and Wales last year, and recent forecasts have predicted this figure will soon reach
100,000. Even allowing for the fact that the DTI figures do not include Scotland (about 9 per cent of
the UK), the latest Thomas Charles research suggests that this figure could more than double in the
next few years. Another key stat supporting this concern is that 11 per cent of respondents have
already sought help from a debt solutions company, equivalent to 900,000 nationally.

In most danger are those living in rented or council houses, with the research suggesting 28
per cent of this sector are close to insolvency. Also indebted, are the divorced, those living in
Scotland, and, perhaps surprisingly, as this is such a broad category, – females.

© Investment & Business News 2013