How to cope with financial difficulties

Credit cards Keeping on top of credit can be difficult during tough economic times

If you are worried about not being able to keep up with repayments on your loans, credit cards or mortgage, there is lots of help available.

For starters, you may want to take the BBC's Financial Healthcheck. to help you identify your financial priorities and receive tips on how to tackle them.

It also outlines how it is important to keep up to date with priority debts including housing and council tax.

The BBC's Debt Test will help you to find out how likely you are to have problems - and what to do about them.

A good place to start for help if you begin to struggle is the Citizens Advice website.

The StepChange Debt Charity can also offer solutions via its online debt counselling service Debt Remedy.

With energy costs rising, take a look at our guide to where to get help with heating bills.

Groups including the StepChange Debt Charity or the National Debtline offer free, independent advice via their websites or you can speak to one of their specialists by contacting their helplines. The National Debtline has also developed an online service called My Money Steps.

For up-to-date news and guides on debt issues, you can go to the BBC News website's dedicated section on dealing with debt.

The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Links to external sites are for information only and do not constitute endorsement. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.

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