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How to Reduce Debt by Exploring Debt Relief Options (Video)

The amount of consumers seeking debt relief is rising in oil-dependent provinces such as Saskatchewan. The oil industry has shown some evidence of recovery, but some workers have been turning to temporary, part-time work to make ends meet while they wait for a turnaround. In Prince Albert, February’s unemployment rate passed 10 per cent, while the rest of the province saw hopeful gains.

Those without work often rely on debt to make ends meet, but aren’t always able to make timely payments, as we’ve seen 90-day delinquency rates climb by 22.7 per cent in the fourth quarter of last year. In some cases, lenders might end up increasing credit card limits or extending credit lines to consumers, which could sink them even further into debt.

For individuals and families who may be concerned about job loss, it is important to take a look at your finances and make necessary changes ahead of time. This may include exploring all your available debt relief options, and adding as much as possible to emergency savings while you are still employed. Building an emergency fund that can sustain you and your family for a few months while looking for work can help you avoid turning to debt. Create a budget to review your spending and reduce any unnecessary costs. Download our budget worksheet or a budgeting app to help get an overview of your finances and find ways to save.

Living with pressing debt in the face of job loss or reduced wages can only add to stress. Speaking to a debt professional is one way to reduce stress while learning about your debt repayment options. A Licensed Insolvency Trustee can recommend a number of options, including a debt consolidation loan, credit counselling or a consumer proposal as an alternative to bankruptcy. By taking action as soon as you begin to feel like you might be unable to manage debts, more debt options will be available to you.

To learn more about your debt relief options and seek financial advice, contact your local BDO office in Prince Albert. You can also use BDO’s debt repayment calculator to compare your debt options.

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