Your views and questions.

Moderators: TalbotWoods, JaneClack

By steveyorkshire
#263083 Hi all, what a great forum.

Brief intoduction - Just over 3 years ago I realised my personal debts had got out of control, owed approx £40k in unsecured debts.

Approx £15k was an unsecured loan relating to a Northern Rock 125% mortgage (the house was sold years ago), and £25k on various credit cards. When the government took over Northern Rock, despite all my best efforts, they went for a CCJ, repeatedly saying they wanted to secure the debt before stopping interest, despite it being an unsecured loan. Anyway to cut a long story short the judge agreed with my £76 a month repayment (about 60% of contractual amount).

I have been in a DMP with the CCCS for over three years, my current payment is £488 a month and the total credit card debt is now down to about £12k, and the NR debt about £12k, so I have repaid about £20k in total, mainly off the credit cards. Only Barclaycard continue to charge interest at 12.9%, so in effect I am paying roughly £400 a month off my debts.

Here is my quandry.....

After three years of REALLY having to work hard to keep up these levels of repayment in my DMP, I am now actually paying much more per month than the minimum payments would be if I was repaying them normally.

I would like to get my life back and enjoy it a little more, I have had no holiday for three years, and am considering coming out of the DMP to go back to the "normal" way of repaying.

I obviously realise that my creditors might want to start charging interest again, and I planned to ask the credit card companies to keep it to a minimum (i.e. under 10%), however it is the CCJ fixed at £76 which causes me the most concern. Are they likely to continue to accept this, or will they try and go for a higher repayment. Also has anyone been in a similar situation, and how did the card companies react??? or more importantly how did you word your letter, did you simply say you wanted to manage your own DMP or return to the contractual payments??

I realise staying in the DMP is the sensible thing to do, but I can see light at the end of the tunnel, and would really love to have the security of a little extra cash in MY pocket for contingencies/rainy days/actually having a life.

Thank you for reading my longer than anticipated post, any advice gratefully received.
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By DuffNCustard
#263113 Stick with your DMP - its working and its getting you out of debt. yep its tough but once you've cleared all the debt life is in HD again

I finished my DMP with the CCCS in April, like you I was sorely tempted to exit early but I wanted more than anything to be debt free.

Also take a look at the agreement you made with the CCCS - don't welch out on it now becuase you want to enjoy more income - how did you get into debt - have you changed that much aplologies for being blunt but don't be tempted see it through.

Sure you might get some jam today but with persistence you can have jam and cakes in just a couple of years - no get debt free there's nothing like it - and with interest frozen you'd be a mug to jeopardise that!
By nomlas
#263133 Hi steve and welcome: Re "the house was sold years ago" does this mean that you have no assets? If so and if you are in no great rush to be debt free then it is quite simple to take over the running of your own DMP and greatly reduce your payments. I would think the CCJ would be a stumbling block but I think you might be able to ask for a reditermination.

I just emailed CCCS, thanked them and said that due to unforseen circumstances I wished to take over the running of my own DMP, they were fine about it. You could certainly sort Barclaycard out and tell them in no uncertain terms to stop the interest or you will stop paying them anything. I did it to Lloyds/TSB and eventually they stopped, I still didnt pay anything for a few months anyway :)

This advice is only applicable if you have NO ASSETS. You could also consider Bankruptcy. Regards and good luck. -- nomlas
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By JaneClack
#263153 You should remember though that if you do back out and take over your own DMP, CCCS will not take you back if you change your mind later.

Their budget should leave you enough to live on and if you really want to get out of debt - and have no assets - you should really go for broke and go bankrupt as that will clear it all and put a finite end to the effects on credit rating (six years); any creditor taking further action and if you do have any surplus income just making one payment for up to 36 months. The OR uses the National Family Expenditure Survey for the budget so is usually somewhat more generous than other guidelines.
By rikw
#263923 I started my DMP with CCCS and they were a God send and cannot thank them enough, with their help and the advice from this site was able to steady a rapidly sinking ship. Since finishing with CCCS, Ive felt more in control, and all but one of my creditors Barclaycard have been OK. They started playing up whilst with CCCS, and was the kick start to my decision to do my own. Most of my debts are substantial amounts so find the creditors less willing to risk me going bankrupt and getting peanuts in return. In contrast I administer my wife's DMP where there are smaller debts "less than £1k" and they are a lot more hassle. I found that when the creditor started applying charges again CCCS let them carry on, whereby I was able to stop them in their tracks (not a criticism of CCCS just an observation) The key I think to doing your own is setting up a good administration system, keeping all correspondence filed and keeping records of payments( I have designed my own spreadsheet) that keeps track of all payments to each account