Academics at the University of Edinburgh have created a new method of determining which people are at risk of falling into problem debt, it has been reported.
Scientists at the university’s Credit Research Centre (CRC) have revealed a new method which takes into account wider economic conditions and not just the would-be borrower’s credit history.
Professor Jonathan Crook of the CRC said the tests were particularly useful at predicting debt defaults.
"Higher interest rates, greater unemployment and rising house prices – which have a direct impact on people’s pockets – all result in a higher risk," he warned.
Many borrowers, however, have been lent funds prior to this system and before the credit crunch and may be now finding it hard to meet their repayments.
High interest rates and an increase in the cost of living have caused many debtors to struggle.
One possible way out of debt is an individual voluntary arrangement, an alternative to bankruptcy that can help a person become debt free within a set period of time and allows unaffordable debt to be written off.