More people in Hull are struggling with debt than in any other area of the UK according to a report out today by the Money Advice Service. Hull has over 40% of its population over indebted and struggling with debts.
Nottingham, Manchester, Knowsley and Liverpool were also highlighted as areas where around two-in-five adults are in debt and struggle to make ends meet.
It was found that Just one in six of the nearly nine million people estimated to be trapped in a spiral of severe debt in the UK is getting help to break free.
Around 8.8 million people are “over-indebted”, meaning they have fallen at least three months behind with their bills in the last six months or they feel their debts are a heavy burden.
However, just 17% of this group said they are getting advice to help them deal with their debt, while around two-fifths (40%) said they did not feel able to talk to their creditors and 44% did not know where to turn for help, the research from more than 5,000 people found.
More people struggle with debt in cities in the north of England and Northern Ireland. In the top five over-indebted areas over 40% of the total local adult population is struggling with debts – in the City of Kingston-upon-Hull, Nottingham, Manchester, Knowsley and Liverpool, respectively.
At the other end of the scale, Richmond upon Thames in south London has just 1.2% of its population struggling with debt, the report found.
Three-quarters (75%) of the estimated 8.8 million people with severe debt problems are under 45 years old and nearly two-thirds (64%) are women.
The report used information from credit checking company Experian to build a profile of those who have sunk badly into debt.
Families dependent on benefits made up around one fifth (20.2%) of those who are over-indebted, while “worried” working families who find being in debt a constant burden accounted for a similar proportion (19.4%).