Almost one in five UK adults has missed a payment in the past 12 months - and for seven per cent of the population, that means missing a payment on their home, either as a mortgage or rent.
Bluestone Mortgages says other missed payments include utility bills or credit cards, tax bills or loan repayments.
Seven in 10 of those who missed a credit card payment did so more than once. Similarly, of those who missed a utility payment, more than three-quarters missed more than one.
However, one in seven appears to be too embarrassed to seek financial support should they need it, while a similar number say they would not know where to begin.
Some 17 per cenrt of people are unaware that support from a financial organisation such as their mortgage lender or energy provider could help them in the event of financial hardship, and a further third are aware of the support but don’t know how it could help them.
Steve Seal, chief executive of Bluestone Mortgages, comments: “The ongoing cost of living crisis and squeeze on affordability are taking their toll, with one in seven having missed a payment over the last year. This undoubtedly has a knock-on effect on someone’s credit score and can impact their ability to borrow. However, rather than shying away from talking about the state of their finances and ending up in financial difficulty, we must encourage people to seek the help and support they need.
“It's important to remember that there is help at hand and early engagement is key. The earlier they can engage, the more tailored support they will receive. Whether that be support directly from an organisation, or being signposted to a debt adviser who can help them get their finances back on track, we as an industry must work together to highlight the support options available so that we can deliver a fair outcome which takes into account each and everyone’s unique situation.”
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