CONCERNS have been raised over a sharp increase in the level of personal debt held by people in Renfrewshire and East Renfrewshire.

According to the latest UK Personal Debt Index (PDI), the average level of unsecured debt of people in Renfrewshire increased by 23 per cent in the final quarter of 2017.

On average, people in the area now owe £20,150 – higher than the national figure of £19,996.

Meanwhile, in East Renfrewshire, the level increased by more than 13 per cent, with average debt now standing at £17,403.

The PDI is compiled quarterly by insolvency practice Creditfix following a survey of more than 60,000 people across the country.

Terry Sweeney, CEO of Creditfix, said the latest figures do not come as a shock but has advised people to look into the services available to help them tackle long-term money problems.

He added: “The three months leading up to Christmas are always an expensive time, with pressures mounting to recreate the perfect festive occasion with gifts, parties and food all to pay for.

“In many ways, these figures are not unexpected but they do also reflect a longer-term issue for individuals who have a history of financial concerns.

“The new year is a great opportunity for individuals to resolve to tackle their money worries head on. It is quite understandably a very sensitive and worrying issue to deal with but we would implore people to seek professional advice.”

Unsecured debt refers to any debt which is not protected by a guarantor or asset and includes bank loans, credit cards and payday loans.

For debt advice and more information on Creditfix, visit or call 0808 156 7728.