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Personal Debt Being Repaid With Budgeting Help

PRESS RELEASE

A press release from the NZ Federation of Family Budgeting Services (NZFFBS), prompted by the annual review of results achieved by affiliated budgeting services

Personal Debt Being Repaid With Budgeting Help

Over $million 48.5 has been returned to the economy in the 12 months to 30 June 2004 through the work of budget advisers working in community organisations providing free budgeting advice under the auspices of the New Zealand Federation of Family Budgeting Services Inc.

Budgeting services working with more than 33,000 families in the last year were presented with over $million 320 debt of which $million 69 was overdue for payment by the time the client approached the budgeting service for help.

“Sadly this means that every family being helped long-term by the budget adviser had on average debt of $23,778 of which $5,089 was late in being paid,” says Shirley Woodrow, Federation President. She adds though that “Our member budgeting services may be struggling to attract volunteers and meet the increasing costs of complying with laws but they continue to achieve remarkable results”.

By helping clients work to household budgets and showing them how to negotiate with creditors the budgeting services identified that each family had on average repaid debt of $3,769.00. When over 70% of clients seeking budget advice rely on benefits as a main source of income this is a special result.

Personal debt continues to grow at an alarming rate with the average family now owing 37% more than they did last year. The only encouraging news from this year’s findings is that overdue debt is increasing at a slower rate than each of the last 3 years.

Mrs Woodrow sounds a cautionary note that if people continue to borrow at these rates which is well in excess of inflation and wage increases they will over-extend themselves and end up with poor credit ratings and losing purchases through repossession. .

People should take independent advice before committing themselves to debt.

ENDS

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