Cost of Living as a Debt Driver?

Cost of Living as a Debt Driver?

13th March 2024

Over 650,000 People Cite the Cost of Living As Debt Driver

11th March 2024

The cost-of-living crisis has seen hundreds of thousands of people forced into debt, or seen their existing debt get worse, new analysis from Citizens Advice Scotland (CAS) has revealed.

Analysis of polling from the research company YouGov found that 84 per cent of people in debt found the higher cost-of-living for groceries and utility bills a reason why they had debt issues.

Taking into account Scotland’s population estimates that works out to 657,323 people.

Citizens Advice Scotland (CAS) is running the “Stressed about Debt” campaign, which encourages people who are worried about their bills or stressed about their debts to seek advice from the Citizens Advice network.

People can go to  and pick an advice route that works for them, such as online self-help tools, online advice pages or one to one advice from their local CAB.

The CAB service helps improve people’s financial situation and for some this includes debt write -off. Since last spring CABs have helped write off over £11 million worth of debt, with the average amount written off being over £12,600 per client.

CAS Financial Health spokesperson Jemiel Benison said:

“This has been the worst cost-of-living crisis in memory, and the legacy of it is now clear – hundreds of thousands of people with new debt issues, whether that is entering debt for the first time or seeing their existing debt get worse.

“After years of higher costs for food, energy and housing it is completely understandable that people find themselves behind on bills. Anyone can find themselves in debt when their income stays the same but the costs of everything else just goes up and up.

“We want people who are stressed about their debts to seek advice and support from the Citizens Advice network. You don’t need to go to a CAB to get advice, instead you can check our online advice pages or use our interactive self-help tools.

“Our network gets real results for people – last year people who saw a gain having sought advice were more than £3,700 better off. Our advice is impartial, confidential and crucially free – we don’t charge for our advice, and we never will.”