Debt-Free London

Talk Money Week – pop up shop in Oxford circus

‘Talk Money Week’ | Monday 8th – Saturday 13th November | Pop Up Shop @ 58 Oxford Street

Debt Free London, which has already helped over 250,000 people with free debt advice, is providing a pop-up advice centre as part of Talk Money Week from 8th – 13th November at 58 Oxford Street.

The centre will be open from 10 am-8 pm daily with a programme curated with other partners to be announced shortly. This will include panels on savings, budgeting, common debt worries and how to access non-judgemental help amongst other things.

“With Furlough ending and the holiday season quickly approaching, we’re pleased to open a pop-up money advice centre on Oxford Street for Talk Money Week. Our goal is to encourage more Londoners to seek advice for their money and budgeting worries, and show them that free, non-judgemental advice is available to them when they need it.”

Matt Dronfield – Head of Debt Free London

Sadly, In London, over 1.4 million adults struggle to make ends meet. The most common types of debts are rent arrears (48%), council tax arrears (34%), and credit card debt (34%).

In addition, there has been a sharp rise in young people using short term finance options from companies with buy now pay later schemes rather than learning to budget within their means. What used to be a small percentage of credit these deals can easily trap those most vulnerable. Digital credit equals real-life consequences and debt for many. It’s a clever rebranding of credit aimed at a younger crowd. However, it could have serious implications on future credit if not used carefully.  In the UK, the use of BNPL nearly quadrupled in 2020, to £2.7bn in transactions, according to official data.

The Debt-Free London service, delivered by a partnership of 17 charities working together, provides a single debt advice service for London with a dedicated team of staff. Funded by the Money and Pensions Service they provide free and impartial advice to those with a debt problem.

Their advice is available via telephone, webchat, video chat and via a network of face-to-face advice centres. As well as video advice kiosks placed in community hubs, libraries and food banks in order to reach the vulnerable. 

During the pandemic, they adapted their service to operate 24/7 with additional funding from the Mayor of London and had over 44,000 conversations with people with debt problems.

DFL impact report |  The Mayor of London | October 2021 Update

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How to tackle your debt

I often talk about how I was once £35k in debt. Despite the fact it is now paid off, I still need to manage my finances. Many of us lost our jobs during the pandemic, and these life circumstances often lead to struggles with money.

Being in debt takes its toll on your mental health, relationships, and ability to cope. It’s important to get help sooner rather than later, and professional advice.