5th December 2014
Denbighshire, Merthyr Tydfil and Stoke on Trent have been given the dubious honour of being the top three debt hotspots in England and Wales.
Denbighshire in North Wales is the area where the highest proportion of the local population has received help from Citizens Advice about a debt problem, followed by Merthyr Tydfil in South Wales and then Stoke-on-Trent in the West Midlands.
Over the past year Citizens Advice has helped half a million people with debt problems and it revealed how the types of debt issues people get help with has changed since the start of the economic crisis.
While problems with consumer debt, such as credit cards and unsecured personal loans, have fallen significantly, there has been a rise in problems with priority debts such as rent and council tax arrears.
Gillian Guy, chief executive of Citizens Advice, said: ‘Times have changed, and so have people’s debt problems. Consumer debt like credit cards and personal loans have traditionally been the most common debt problems that come through our doors but now priority debt such as council tax arrears are gradually building up as people struggle to cover everyday costs.’
She said that debt problems in the past were likely to be triggers by a life event such as illness, redundancy or separation but ‘in recent years more people are being pushed into debt as they struggle to stretch their income to cover everyday living costs’.
Top 20 debt hotspots in England and Wales