If you’re in financial difficulty
If you’re in financial difficulty
Many people experience money problems at some stage of their lives.
There can be many reasons, such as the breakdown of a relationship or long term illness. Sometimes people overstretch themselves and simply find it hard to manage when an unexpected expense crops up.
Please don't be tempted to ignore the problem and hope it just goes away - it won't. We’re here to help, so please get in touch with us as soon as possible so you can discuss your options.
Financial difficulties video
When things don’t go to plan, or life takes an unexpected turn, the most important thing is to contact us as soon as possible, The sooner you start to take steps to sort things out, the easier it is to remove the pressures of being in debt. This little video covers the basics.
How do I know if I have a problem?
Be honest with yourself. If one or more of the following warning signs apply to you, then you should consider taking some action:
- Do you just pay the minimum payment on your credit card, month after month?
- Do you need to borrow from friends or family?
- Are you borrowing more, or using cash advances from credit cards, to pay existing debts?
- Do you put off opening bills, or letters from banks and other lenders?
- Are you paying bank account charges because of bounced cheques or unpaid bills?
- Do you pay for grocery or utility bills by credit card without clearing the balance each month?
Please note: these considerations aren’t exhaustive or meant to be taken as financial advice made by MBNA. You should seek independent financial advice if you’re unsure about your financial needs.
How do I start to get things under control?
Spend some time working out your own personal budget. Make a note of all your financial commitments, not just the obvious mortgage and loan payments, but other payments, such as gym fees, bills, petrol, council tax, internet and satellite TV packages, pension contributions, etc.
To make this a little easier, you might find our income and expenditure form helpful.
Subtract your outgoings from your total monthly income to figure out what’s left over. Be realistic though, otherwise you could set a budget that’s difficult to stick to.
When considering your own personal budget, you may want to keep these things in mind:
- Review what you spend on non-essential items. Cut back on them until your finances are under control.
- Consider your priority debts first, where failure to pay could have serious consequences. For example, council tax, rent arrears, mortgage arrears and outstanding fines.
- Check what rates of interest you pay on your debts. Many lenders offer 0% introductory rates so you could save money by transferring your balance to a product with a lower rate. However, you should remember that transferring more expensive debts to another product may take you longer and cost you more to repay what you owe.
- Try to pay the debt with the most expensive rates of interest first.
If your budget planning shows your outgoings exceed, or are close to your income, seek advice on how to approach creditors with a view to reaching a payment arrangement.
Tips on managing debt
If you think you can manage with a few adjustments to your budget, then read our guide to managing debt, including tips on how to cut spending and stay on top of your MBNA credit card account. We’d still recommend you get in touch with us though, just in case there’s something we can do to help.
Get in touch if you need support
To speak to us about your options, call 0800 056 7298 (or +44 1244 757 233 from outside the UK). Lines are open Monday to Thursday 9am-8pm, Friday 9am-6pm, Saturday 9am-1pm. Standard network charges may apply. You’ll need details of your income and expenditure to hand, so it’d be helpful to pull those together before you call.
Everything will be handled with the sensitivity you’d expect.
How we can help you
We can talk you through some options based on your income and expenditure details, potentially figure out a payment arrangement for your MBNA credit card to make things easier in the short term.
Could a debt management company help?
There are several debt management companies operating in the UK who could help you manage your debts and negotiate with your creditors to try to reduce your overall payments, making a difficult financial situation easier to control.
They assess what you can realistically repay each month and create a debt management plan for you. They'll also contact your creditors to negotiate a longer repayment term or a lower repayment amount.
A debt management company will manage your repayments from a monthly payment you make to them - you'll receive regular progress updates and, in most cases, you'll no longer be contacted by your creditors. Your circumstances will also be monitored to make sure your plan stays on track.
Just bear in mind, most debt management companies charge service fees. Plans are subject to status and signing up will affect your credit record, as well as your ability to obtain credit in future.
Free and independent advice
You can get independent advice about money worries from a range of organisations, including:
Money Advice Service (MAS)
StepChange Debt Charity
Visit Citizens Advice
Visit National Debtline
Don’t wait to get in touch
If you’re experiencing financial difficulties, please don’t wait to get in touch about your MBNA credit card debt. Call us on 0800 056 7298 (or +44 1244 757 233 from outside the UK). Lines are open 8am-8pm every day. Standard network charges may apply.
Please note: the contents of this page are not intended to be taken as financial advice or recommendation made by MBNA. You should seek independent financial advice if you’re unsure about your financial needs.