The New Year could bring with it a risk of homelessness for hundreds of thousands of people, many of them on Teesside, who are struggling with their housing costs, with people falling into a dangerous spiral of debt in order to keep a roof over their head, results of a survey by the homelessness charity Shelter has shown.
Stockton North Labour MP Alex Cunningham is urging anyone worried about their debts to seek early debt advice as their New Year’s resolution before they get into deeper water.
Almost one million people, including hundreds across the Tees Valley, have taken out a payday loan to help pay their rent or mortgage in the last 12 months, according to a new Shelter survey.
The survey also reveals that almost seven million people in total are relying on credit in some form to help pay their housing costs, using payday loans, unauthorised overdrafts, other loans or credit cards.
“These shocking findings show the extent to which so many households across Teesside and the nation at large are desperately struggling to keep their homes.
“Turning to short-term payday loans to help pay for the cost of housing is totally unsustainable and can quickly lead to debts snowballing out of control and possibly eviction or repossession and ultimately homelessness.
“Every two minutes someone in Britain faces the nightmare of losing their home. I urge every single one of those people in Teesside now relying on credit to help pay their rent or mortgage to urgently seek advice.”
People can get help through their local Citizens’ Advice Bureau or through Shelter’s website www.shelter.org.uk/debt