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Real Stories: “Wish I’d got financial help sooner”

George's story:

Like the proverbial frog sitting in a pot of water slowly boiling, George (58), gradually fell behind with his finances.

He had spent years struggling just to keep up paying for the basics of life, and slowly fell further and further behind, to the point where everything he earned was spent as soon as it came in. He often went hungry and worried about having no emergency savings; no safety net for unexpected costs.

So when his old fridge broke down and he had no funds to buy a new one, he consulted Anna; a Financial Capability Worker with a local service provider. George was amazed at the range of assistance Anna was able to provide him.

Firstly, Anna negotiated a debt reduction and freeze on an outstanding loan, and negotiated a more affordable repayment plan for George.

Next she found several concessions and rebates for energy and housing costs that he had not known about, and obtained a 20% discount rate for his electricity and gas bills with a new utility provider.

Finally, Anna  helped George draw up a budget and spending plan, including paying a fixed monthly cost to cover all regular bills on an easyway payment scheme.

Instead of ending up with an expensive loan, George was referred to an affordable lending scheme who lent him money at zero interest for a new fridge.

“By the time we’d made all the changes, I was about $60 per week better off, and that has made a huge difference in helping me afford everything I need, plus being able to save a little for a rainy day. I wish I’d done it sooner rather than spend years worrying about money”