Redundancy or reduced income
If you’ve lost your job, you're probably busy looking for a new one. Don't let this stop you staying in control of your finances to avoid future problems.
Talk to your lenders
As soon as you know a fall in income will affect your ability to pay all your bills, your first step should be to tell all the lenders who've given you credit. That includes not only your mortgage provider, but others such as any credit card companies, banks or finance companies you have credit accounts with. Your credit report contains a useful list of lenders and will also help you to understand how your credit history can change if you fall behind with repayments.
Lenders won't think any less of you. In fact, they will consider you a responsible borrower – they don’t want the trouble and expense of chasing missed payments or, in extreme cases, taking you to court. They would much rather help you find a solution. For example, they may grant you a repayment holiday, or extend the length of your loan so you pay less each month.
Keep making your repayments
If you miss repayments, it will lower your credit rating and make it more difficult to borrow in the future. If things get worse and you end up with court judgments for non-payment of your debts, you take out an individual voluntary arrangement or go bankrupt, it could even affect your ability to get work or rent a property, as landlords and prospective employers are increasingly seeking permission to check prospective tenants' and employees' credit reports.
See if you have income or payment protection policies that might help to cover some bills. You should also review any tax credits and benefits in case you're entitled to support or additional support.
If you need direct help, contact an organisation offering free advice who will help you find your way through this difficult period.