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It may be one thing to hear financial advice and warnings from professionals and analysts, but it can be quite another to hear that advice from someone who’s lived through their financial tipping point. The recently released annual BC Consumer Debt Study conducted by BC Licensed Insolvency Trustees Sands & Associates asked consumers across the province who had successfully dealt with a debt problem to weigh in on the warning signs they experienced, indicating their pending money challenges.

Blair Mantin, Senior Vice-President of Sands & Associates and Licensed Insolvency Trustee joined Global News to share some of the key insights from the study. Study participant and past client Debbie also spoke with Global News about her personal experiences trying to manage her debts and some of the challenges she faced attempting to deal with the debt on her own.

Watch the clip here, and read more below:

Warning Signs of a Debt Problem | Highlights from the 2019 BC Consumer Debt Study

Signs of a Debt Problem

The 2019 BC Consumer Debt Study revealed that although many consumers reported experiencing “transactional” indications that their debts were becoming a problem, such as missing or delaying debt payments (62.1%) or a wage garnishment or bank account seizure (9.6%) – the top-most reported sign that debts were becoming a problem was much less measurable on paper: overwhelming stress (67.4%).

This year’s BC Consumer Debt Study also uncovered some key warning signs that may often be overlooked by the average consumer. Firstly, and perhaps most emotionally impactful, nearly one-third of respondents reported borrowing from friends or family to make a debt payment. This often results in an enlargement of the problem and an increase in the emotional strain consumers are feeling.

In addition, nearly one quarter of respondents reported using payday loans, which can often kickstart a cycle of continuous borrowing to repay high loan fees and expenses.

Read the full 2019 BC Consumer Debt Study here.

Where to Get Debt Help

Many participants in the latest BC Consumer Debt Study initially delayed seeking professional assistance because they didn’t know where to seek debt help (30.8%).

The facts about personal bankruptcy and a specialized type of debt consolidation called a Consumer Proposal are often misunderstood by consumers in Canada or confused with processes in place in the US.

In Canada there is only one professional endorsed, authorized and regulated across the country to offer debt advice and solutions to consumers – a Licensed Insolvency Trustee. Some of the situations a Licensed Insolvency Trustee can help you or your business address include (but are not limited to):

  • Whether a debt is collectable and your legal rights when it comes to debt;
  • What to do when you can’t pay a debt; and,
  • Your options for managing debts.

Licensed Insolvency Trustees can help you deal with virtually all types of debts, from credit cards to payday loans to mortgage shortfalls and Canada Revenue Agency balances. It costs nothing to meet with a Trustee for an impartial and confidential assessment of your situation to see what solutions are available.

Get a plan to be debt-free in as little as an hour – book your confidential free debt consultation with a local Sands & Associates representative today.