Debt advice

Jubilee Debt Advice

One Vision Housing, in partnership with Jubilee Debt advice, offer OVH customers free confidential help, advice and practical support to manage debt and money.

To arrange a referral call 0300 365 1111 or email

Citizen’s Advice Sefton – Money Advice Mondays

If you need help with Council Tax, rent, catalogue or credit cards, mortgages, water, gas or electric arrears, Pay Day loans or just want advice on budgeting, visit the Citizen’s Advice drop-in service every Monday from 9.30am – 4pm at Goddard Hall, Bootle, L20 5DF.

Money Advice Service

You can also get information, support, and advice regarding debt from the Money Advice Service. Find help online, over the phone or in person using their Debt Advice Locator.

Step Change – Debt Charity Solutions

Those struggling with bills and building debt may find it useful to speak and seek advice from Step Change. The charity organisation provides tailored plans of action and have over 25 years of experience in providing debt advice. There is also an online tool which provides tailored debt advice in just 20 minutes. More information can be found on the Step Change website.

Advance Payment Loan of Universal Credit

It will take at least 6 weeks after you apply for Universal Credit (UC) to get your first payment.
During this time if you don’t have enough money to live on you should ask for an advance payment of UC. The advance payment is a loan – you’ll have to pay it back. The repayments will be automatically deducted from your Universal Credit payments until the advance is fully paid back. This means that you’ll get smaller Universal Credit payments while you pay back the advance payment, which will take at least 3 months. The maximum loan is half of your estimated first payment and is drawn from your personal element only.

You can ask for an advance payment at your Universal Credit interview, which you’ll be booked in for once you complete your online application. The interview will take place at a Job Centre. If you’ve already had your interview, you can phone the Universal Credit Helpline to ask for an advance payment.

You’ll need to explain how getting an advance payment will prevent extreme hardship. This can be situations like not being able to afford to eat, or not being able to afford energy bills or rent. You can only get one advance payment, so make sure you ask for enough to cover you until you’ll get your first UC payment.

It is really important to make this request as early as possible.

Universal Credit Helpline (Monday to Friday, 8am – 6pm):

Telephone: 0345 600 0723
Textphone: 0345 600 0743

Loan sharks

Illegal money lenders or ‘loan sharks’ as they are known are the most dangerous and unregulated form of credit available. Non-payment can result in threats, intimidation and assault.

Often a loan shark will be someone a friend knows who can lend you a bit of cash and can be seen as providing a necessary service. That is until you can’t afford to pay. If you are in debt to a loan shark, or know of one operating in your community please contact us immediately. Alternatively you can contact the Illegal Money Lending Team anonymously on 0300 555 2222.

Did you know: Loan sharks have no legal basis to recover monies they have lent. Hundreds of people have had their debts cancelled following the arrests of loan sharks.

More help

Check out our  Help near you directory for more information on the services available in your area.