Archive for November, 2012
Receiving a default notice through your letterbox from one of your creditors can be upsetting and stressful, especially if you do not know what it is, why they sent it and what you need to do.
What is it?
A default notice is a formal notification from a creditor to acknowledge a break in your credit agreement. A default notice can only be issued against debts that are regulated by the Consumer Credit Act.
A default notice will include the following information:
- The full name and address of the creditor issuing the default notice and the full name and address of the borrower
- The type of agreement and full details of how the agreement was breached
- The early settlement figure (for fixed sum only)
- Action you can take to remedy the situation and comply with the agreement
- The proposed action by the creditor if you don’t comply with the agreement
Why was it sent?
A default notice is issued to a debtor when they fall into arrears with their creditor. If you, for whatever reason, were unable to maintain the payments towards your agreement and you have been unsuccessful with reaching a new repayment plan with them, then they are entitled to issue a default notice before they can pursue legal action.
What to do next…
Once you have received your default notice, it is extremely important that you act as quickly as possible as failure to respond within 14 days could result in further action.
If you are unable to comply with the terms of the default notice, you will need to contact the creditor and come to a new agreement to repay the debt.
If you are able to pay the debt within the set time period then you can write to the creditor and ask for the default notice to be removed after they receive the payment
We recently blogged about ways in which you could reduce your electricity usage and we have also written about the average cost of running your household appliance, but before you can start reducing your usage it may be a good idea to find out how much you appliances actually cost to run so that you can make necessary cut backs.
An energy monitor is a handy gadget that gives you an estimate of the amount of electricity that you are using in real time. Most energy monitors will be made up of three parts – a handheld display, a transmitter and a sensor. The monitor works by measuring the magnetic field around the power cable and measuring the electric current that is passing through it. This information will then be sent to your handheld monitor and will display the units being used as well as recalculating to show the cost.
Energy monitors can be purchased for around £40, however most energy suppliers will provide these for free of charge for their customers depending on their tariff.
Unlike a Smart Meter, an energy meter does not send the information that it presents to your energy supplier and are simply for your viewing.
An energy monitor is designed to help you to keep track of the amount of energy that you are using. If you have one then it is in your best interest to pay attention to your usage and cut down where you can.
For more information, please visit Which?
Every year we as a nation waste hundreds if not thousands of pounds in electricity, this may be due to a lack of knowledge of how to reduce electricity usage or laziness. Whatever the reason may be, with the cost of living increasing and the cost of electricity rising once again in time for winter, it is time that we all learn to become more energy efficient.
Believe it or not but your washing machine and tumble dryer us more energy efficient with a full load.
Most modern washing machines have an eco-cycle, these are designed to use less water and less electricity than the traditional daily programmes, therefore saving you money.
All lightly soiled clothes should be washed at 30oC, by doing this you could save £10 a year.
Your tumble dryer is possibly the most expensive household appliance, see our guide here, therefore it is important to not over-use it. If it is winter and you have the heating on then you should hang your clothes on a clothes horse and make use of the household heat. In the summer you should make the most of our rare sunny days and hang your clothes on a washing line.
Reducing the use of your tumble dryer by a quarter could save you £20 a year.
Think about how you cook you food… if you have an electric hob and cook all of your Sunday roast vegetables in separate pans, you could save up to £25 a year by switching to an electric steamer.
Ensure that you correctly follow the cooking guidelines and set the correct temperature on your oven. If you food has been defrosted then it will take less time to cook and will therefore be cheaper.
When using your kettle, only boil as much water as you need as it will cost less than boiling a full kettle.
It is thought that 20per cent of your electricity bill is made up of the cost of lighting
your home. However, by simply changing your bulbs to energy efficient ones you can reduce the amount you spend on lighting your home.
Low energy bulbs are not only cheaper to use, but they are also known to last as long as ten years compare to one year for a traditional bulb.
By switching from a 40W traditional bulb to a 8W low energy one you can save £21.60 over five years.
The best way to reduce the cost of running your technology items such as your television,
computer or DVD player is to switch them off when they are
not being used.
Other than your set top box, such as Sky+ which cannot be switched off, all of your other entertainment gadgets should be switched off at the plug once you have finished using them.
Cleaning appliances such as your hoover do not tend to cost too
much to run, however that is not to say that savings cannot be made.
If you have wooden or laminate flooring in your
home you could consider swapping your hoover for a micro-fibre mop. Not only will this reduce your energy usage but it will also be less hassle.
Regularly cleaning and defrosting your freezer will ensure that it runs more energy efficient.
For more tips then please visit Which?
Being in debt is always a very personal thing, even after the double-dip recession with many people suffering some level of financial difficulty there is still such a stigma attached. At Payplan we help more than 100,000 people each year to become debt free. Each of them has their own story and some want to share it to try and help other people.
Here one of our clients wants to tell her story to show other people they are not alone…….
“In hindsight, with experience, if only I had known…..
“Swallowed up by debt and can’t sleep, trying to keep a direct debit going for your life insurance and thinking of walking onto railway lines to end your life because you think your family would be far better off without you?
“I have been there.
“I went on midnight walks round my town, knocking on an empty church door, sitting under a tree in freezing cold weather hoping the elements would take me. Having to walk back to a home with little sympathy and mostly hearing “you’ve been drinking again?”
“As a woman supporting a partner of 12 years and 3 children and trying to run a business, I was crumbling visibly. As the recession hit, my partner left, my business fell apart and so did I. I found myself signing on, with a box of tissues provided for me.
“Months later I had some better advice.
“Take note. If you have any credit card, bank or other debts – speak to Payplan. There is no charge, you can send them the letters you receive and can agree a monthly payment.
“For your electricity and gas supply – fit a meter. You pay for what you use and they take about £3 a week for outstanding debt. It was my best move ever.
“Water – a water meter saved me money.
“Once you get some strength, write to anyone you have had a bank, credit card or loan with and ask them for any PPI back. If you are not happy with their reply then write to the Financial Ombudsman Service – that is what they are there for.
“My problems were both personal and business. I think I can say I’ve been through it all, learned, and I’m still here. And life is getting better.
“Please see that it is not your fault. If you ever have a conversation with your child and they say
“mum would you rather kill yourself to make things ok rather than see your grandchildren” you know you need to get help!
“Couples please speak to one another. Share. Don’t ever let one person carry the whole financial burden.
“I hope this helps someone out there not to take their life.”