Phone debt is on the rise, warns Money Advice Trust.
Thousands of people are getting into debt because they can’t afford their expensive smartphone contracts, a charity has claimed.
The Money Advice Trust, a debt advice and support charity, is warning people to make sure they can afford top-end smartphone before signing a contract with a mobile network.
According to the charity, the number of people who phoned the National Debtline - which provides free, confidential advice about dealing with debt problems - with phone debts has exploded in the last five years - from 5,830 calls in 2007, to 14,651 in 2011.
The charity also says that the National Debtline has already received 4,000 phone debt-related calls this year, indicating that the problem continues to grow.
Joanna Elson OBE, chief executive of the Money Advice Trust, said: “Smartphones have had a massive impact on society in the last few years, but one often overlooked consequence is that we’re all paying far more for mobile phone contracts than we were five years ago. This in turn means more people struggling to meet phone contract payments, and finding themselves with a debt problem.
She added: “Fortunately there are options available to those who are struggling. Organisations like National Debtline can help you put together a budget and identify whether you are paying too much for your phone contract."
People can also go through this process online at mymoneysteps.org.