At the end of April 2011, personal debt in the UK amounted to £1,452 billion – the current sum total of personal debt is almost equal to the country’s entire GDP for 2010.
The average household debt stands at £55,854 (or £8,121 if mortgages are excluded) – a property is repossessed every 14 minutes in the UK and landlord possession orders are made 265 times a day. £179 million is paid in interest every 24 hours, and an individual is declared bankrupt or insolvent every 4.36 minutes.
The total amount of lending in April 2011 increased by £1.2 billion (there was a £700 million increase in secured lending and a £500 million increase in consumer credit lending). At the end of April, total secured lending had reached £1,241 billion and total consumer credit stood at £211 billion.
In the past year, £9.5 billion of loans were written off by UK banks and building societies, which is equivalent to £20.71 million every day, and the Citizens Advice Bureau deals with nearly 10,000 people struggling with debt problems daily.
Redundancy is fuelling increasing levels of debt, with 1,384 people made redundant every day and 850,000 unemployed for 12 months or more.