Credit card bills, loan repayments and unauthorised borrowing fees are hitting "already depleted" bank accounts hard, it has been reported.
According to the Daily Record, January can be a "chilly month" for British finances, as the cost of consumers’ Christmas spending begins to bite into household finances.
However, it warned people: "Never borrow from your bank without agreement – you could be charged close to 30 per cent interest plus whopping penalty fees."
Some debtors, though, may find that the rising cost of living is combining with their Christmas overspend and pushing them into unauthorised borrowing or perhaps even towards bankruptcy.
One option for people experiencing such problem debt is an individual voluntary arrangement (IVA).
These were created to allow people an alternative to bankruptcy, offering them a route out of debt which enables them to retain their homes.
IVAs allow debtors to make an affordable monthly payment for a set period, at the end of which any remaining debt is written off.