British consumers are facing increasingly stretched finances as their day-to-day living costs increase and debt burdens begin to bite, an expert has warned.
New research from Alliance Trust has shown the financial wellbeing of Britons is tumbling, amid economic pressures.
Shona Dobbie, head of the Alliance Trust Research Centre, said mortgage payments, "heavy" levels of debt and higher costs are piling pressure on household budgets.
"Our study shows that consumers have apparently spent beyond their means for the last two years, resulting in ever higher levels of debt. This trend is set to end, however," she warned.
Britons who find the cost of their previous borrowing unmanageable following additional financial pressures may fear that bankruptcy looms.
However individual voluntary arrangements (IVAs) can provide an alternative which allows the debtor to repay the money at an affordable level for a set period of time.
At the end of that period, the IVA allows any remaining amount owing to be written off.