Budgeting and managing debt

Information and tips on how to create a budget, cut your bills, manage debt and set up a bank account.

Budgeting

Making your money last can be difficult with rising costs of living. Visit the Money Advice Service for tips and resources to help you make your money go further. Use this Budget planner as a guide.

Debt

Many of us have found ourselves in debt and experienced the emotional pressure it can cause. If you have a debt problem it is important not to panic, but you can’t ignore it either – it won’t go away.

We understand how difficult it can be to manage debt. However it is important to remember that your home is at risk if you do not pay your rent. We're here to help you so if you are struggling please contact your housing officer as soon as you can. They will be able to help with alternative payment arrangements and may be able to suggest who you can contact to claim any benefits you might be entitled to.

If you're worried about your debt, the most important thing is that you do not ignore your debt. You should:

Get help

  • Contact StepChange for free, impartial advice. Call free on 0800 138 1111 or get advice from StepChange online.
  • Contact your Housing Officer if you think you will have problems paying your rent, so they can arrange a payment plan with you.

Get organised

  • Make a list of all your debts and put them in order of importance.
  • Speak to people that you owe money to and let them know you're having financial difficulties.

Avoid high cost credit

  • Avoid pay day loans as far as possible. Notting Hill Housing has a partnership with London Plus Credit Union (LPCU) who can offer a fairer rate of interest on loans.
  • Never use loan sharks. Loan sharks are illegal, unregulated lenders and you will end up paying back a lot more than you took out.

Anonymously report a loan shark

Call the Illegal Money Lending Hotline on 0300 555 2222, email reportaloanshark@stoploansharks.gov.uk or text 'loan shark' and your message to 60003.

Bank Accounts

Having a bank account is essential for when your benefits change to Universal Credit. Direct Debits are also a really good way of managing your money and are often the cheapest way to pay your bills.