Payday Loan Debt – Help & Advice
Everyone has found themselves a bit shy one month and in need a short-term fix. It is in these situations that most people will turn to payday lenders. For a lot of these it is as simple as a few clicks, no credit cheque and money in your account within minutes.
To most people this is the perfect solution, until it has to be paid back. According to an article posted by Global News, payday loans are commonly what starts a catalogue of debt and a Financial Consumer Agency of Canada found that the number of Canadians using payday loans has more than doubled over the years.
With interest rates are as high as 400% even the smallest of loans end up spiralling out of control. This then causes people to end up reliant on this type of loan to pay back the previous one in an endless cat and mouse chase.
However, it’s not just the interest that makes it difficult to find your way out of a payday loan hole. The terms and conditions of their contracts often leave people feeling trapped in a never-ending cycle of debt that they may never clear. This in turn causes people to fall into further poverty.
It was reported by Global News that the lenders place the majority of their stores in low income areas as a marketing strategy which has been wildly criticized.
There have been recent proposals to make changes to the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act such as setting limits on the total cost of borrowing and prohibiting certain fees and charges to help people only borrow affordable amounts. However, it is unclear whether this will be implemented yet.
With interest rates as high as 400% even the smallest of loans can end up spiralling out of control
How Payday Loan Debt Can Affect Your Life
For a lot of people payday loans are something they will turn to after exhausting all other debt avenues. This ultimately impacts on your life in a number of ways.
Struggling with your personal finances can sometimes be the reason you apply for a payday loan in the first place. Using them regularly can often leave you short after being paid, and the interest rates mean you are often paying back more than double what you originally borrow. This can lead to many people either falling behind on other priority bills or incurring additional charges if you don’t make the loan payments. This often becomes the reason behind people having several payday loans because they become reliant on them to get through each month due to having more outgoings than income.
The cycle of debt affects everyone differently. Given that on average a Canadian owes $1.70 for every dollar of income they earn, it is safe to assume that they will also struggle mentally. Financial Therapist, Megan Ford, has stated that financial fears are often linked with stress, anxiety and depression. This is often due to the feeling of guilt that is commonly linked with debt as described by Melanie Lockert, the author of the book ‘Dear Debt’. She states that many will feel shame for getting into debt and then frustrated when trying to get out of it, which can cause your mental state to take a dip. Given the cycle many fall into with payday loans, it is no wonder that stress and anxiety levels will be more prominent.
For most, debt is a very lonely place and feeling like you can’t talk to anyone about your struggles can affect the relationships with the people around you. If the topic becomes off-limits then the problems can intensify and lead to having recurring arguments. According to an article posted by Huffpost, 1 in 10 Canadians have admitted to hiding purchases and debts from their partners and it has been reported that 80% of all families worry about financial issues on a daily basis. Being short every month due to
If you are falling into the vicious cycles of payday loan debt, you may recognize the signs below:
- Relying on these loans to get to the end of each month
- Falling behind on other priority bills
- Leaving yourself short and unable to afford necessities such as food
- Experiencing feelings of anxiety, stress and depression
- Hiding the loans from others
The stigma around debt makes it a commonly avoided topic, but you may notice some of the below signs if someone you know is struggling:
- They appear depressed, stressed or anxious for no clear reason
- Relationships shifting and an increase in arguments (if you live with someone)
- An absence of utilities within their home
- Hiding their finances from you (if they are normally open about this)
How to Get Help
The responsibility of debt is a weighty burden for most to have on their shoulders, and everyone will have a different outlook on this. However, debt is not always easy to shift. The following points are some measures you can take to help regain control of your money.
Transparency is Important – Being open and transparent can be vital in overcoming financial hurdles. Recognizing that you are struggling can often be the first step to getting yourself out of debt
A Piece of Advice – Contact the loan provider and explain your situation, this may allow you to lower your payments or negotiate your payment plan.
Get Help to Clear Your Payday Loan Debt – Debt can be scary and confusing, but it doesn’t have to be. At Money Advice Canada we’re here to help you get back in control of your finances and will do our best to give you the best solution for your situation.
If you are falling into the vicious cycles of payday loan debt, its important that you recognize the signs
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