Store Card Debt Contributing To Serious Debt Problems, Say Debt Counsellors

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The Debt Counsellors Annual UK Debt Survey has revealed that store card debt is a major contributory factor towards serious debt problems in the UK.

In fact, the best advice is to avoid store cards altogether, because store card debt can mount up very quickly due to the high interest rates and it is best to keep temptation at bay.

The Debt Counsellors Annual UK Debt Survey has revealed that store card debt is a major contributory factor towards serious debt problems in the UK.

According to the survey, more than 41% of people seeking help for their debt problems owe money on store cards. Credit cards were the largest contributor, with credit card debt stipulated as a factor in 91% of cases.

Credit Action reports that the combined value of transactions made on charge, credit, debit and store cards was £470 billion in 2005, and it is estimated that this will reach £639 billion in 2010.

Store cards can have a devastating effect on finances as they usually carry interest rates much higher than ordinary credit cards. The issue of store card debt is especially relevant in January as research from Alliance & Leicester Personal Loans reveals that 23% of people used store cards to help fund their Christmas spending.

John Porter, senior counsellor with the Debt Counsellors, believes too many consumers are mounting up store card debt by using their plastic in the wrong way.

He said: "Store cards can be tempting because of free gift incentives or offers of discounts. It is fine to take advantage of these but the balance must be paid off immediately, otherwise excessive interest fees will be incurred.

"In fact, the best advice is to avoid store cards altogether, because store card debt can mount up very quickly due to the high interest rates and it is best to keep temptation at bay."

Porter adds: "Anyone worried about their store card debt, or any other kind of personal debt problems, should get professional debt counselling. The Debt Counsellors provide free, confidential debt advice."

For more advice on store card debt and dealing with serious debt problems, visit http://www.debtcounsellors.co.uk

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MARK NUNNEY
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