Christmas debts typically take 14 weeks to pay off

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Further research emerged this week, highlighted the extent to which the Christmas period can place financial pressure on a significant number of Britons.

Debt advice charities had warned only last week that many people racked up considerable debts after splashing out on the festivities.

And yesterday a separate study suggested that a good number would not pay off what they owed until April!

On average, those surveyed borrowed a little shy of £400 to cover the cost of presents, food and other festive expenses. And it will typically take 14 weeks – which in 2018 is a point several weeks past Easter – to pay back what they owe.

More troubling still, the research suggested that the average person borrowed 46 per cent more last year than they did in 2016 and in around a quarter of cases, borrowers had yet to deal with credit card debts and loans from that year’s festivities!

A spokesman for the loans company PiggyBank, which commissioned the latest research, said: “As we know all too well Christmas can have a brutal effect on our finances.

“However many of us might not have considered how long it takes to pay everything off – a quarter of the year will have gone by before many of us can put our festive spends behind us.

“Debts accrued as a result of Christmas can make a massive effect on the subsequent months so it’s really important to budget ahead where possible and have a payment plan in place for any debt.”

This echoes calls by a number of charities for individuals, particularly those on low incomes, to start budgeting for Christmas many months in advance. Part of the problem at present is that many don’t think about the extra expenditure until a few weeks before the festivities, meaning they have little opportunity to put extra money aside or avoid financial pressures going into the New Year.

Gibson Hewitt can offer expert insolvency advice to individuals and businesses. For more information about our services please contact us today.

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