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Money Advice Service 2017/18 business plan - consultation

Last updated: 6 Feb 2017

Consulting body:
Money Advice Service
Period of consultation:
Runs from 21 December 2016 to 6 February 2017
CML action:
Response submitted

The Money Advice Service is proposing widespread, coordinated efforts with a decisive focus on helping people in the “squeezed” and “struggling” segments of society improve their money skills and deal with their debts, in its draft business plan for 2017/18 published for consultation today.

Having engaged more than 300 organisations in its collaborative strategy to improve financial capability, the Money Advice Service now plans in 2017/18 to fund more than 50 organisations up and down the country to deliver immediate help to people and at the same time develop robust evidence of what really works to improve long-term money skills.

By April 2018 the Money Advice Service aims to:

  • have helped 468,000 people to manage their debts, reducing their stress and improving family life
  • have helped over 6,000 children in schools to improve their money management skills through maths lessons
  • have a robust evidence base of What Works from over 50 projects
  • identified some of the most cost effective and efficient ways to help “squeezed” working-age people, many of whom have less than £500 in savings
  • reached 8.2 million people with the money guidance they need to improve their finances*
  • continued to ensure direct delivery is of the highest quality representing best value for money and that it reaches the people who need it the most
  • developed a strategy to unite the debt sector

CML response

The CML welcomes the aim (2) “to support significantly more over-indebted people to access free, high-quality advice, as early as possible, to resolve their crises and build their long-term financial capability”.

People who are struggling with their finances need help to avoid getting into problem debt, and to deal with it when it occurs. This is essential if people are to meet their commitments; in the case of mortgage debt, it is essential if they are to remain in their home.

Lenders frequently work with customers who are in difficulty to help them meet their commitments, which is why cases of repossession are rare (0.03% of all mortgages).

Nonetheless, some customers are still struggling to pay their mortgage (0.93% were in arrears of greater than 2.5% in 2015) and our members remain happy to support debt advice and debt management organisations that can help these customers stay in their homes.

Read the full CML response below.