Debt and mental health

At Lowell, we understand that dealing with finance and debt can have a real impact on your mental health. We want to be open and honest with our customers to help open up the conversation around debt and mental health.

That’s why we’ve created this mental health and debt guide. We want to help customers find out more about how debt can affect their mental health, and how Lowell can provide support in managing any outstanding debts with Lowell.

How can debt affect your mental health?

While we want to make sure that our customers feel supported, we understand that being contacted about debt can leave you feeling anxious and overwhelmed.

We also know that, if left unchecked, worries about debt can often lead to other mental health problems such as stress, anxiety, and depression.

At Lowell, we completely understand that there is a link between problem debt and mental health. We want to do everything we can to look after our customers. That’s why we have a dedicated support and service team who respond to customers, including TrustPilot reviews like these, so we can help you become debt-free with Lowell.

Who can support me with my mental health and debt concerns?

If you’re finding things difficult, it’s never too late to ask for help. There are lots of independent organisations out there that you can access for free advice, guidance, and other resources, such as StepChange, National Debtline, or Samaritans.

Mental Health & Money Advice is an online advice service aimed at helping those struggling with money because of mental illness or anyone whose mental health is being impacted by their financial situation.

Please be aware that if you’re still struggling with money worries and mental health, you can seek additional medical help from your GP.

What is the breathing space scheme and how does it work?

Breathing space is a free Government-backed scheme which allows anyone struggling with problem debt to take some time to get debt advice and help relieve the stress caused by debt.

Debts that qualify for breathing space include:

  • Credit cards
  • Store cards
  • Overdrafts
  • Personal loans
  • Payday loans
  • Mortgage arrears
  • Rent arrears
  • Council tax debts
  • Arrears on utility bills

There are two different breathing space schemes which you may be eligible for:

  • Standard breathing space scheme – This scheme is suitable if you have a mental health condition but aren’t currently in crisis treatment.
  • Mental health crisis breathing space scheme (You can find out more about mental health breathing space on Mental Health & Money Advice.)

How to talk about debt and mental health?

Speaking to a partner, a friend or any other loved one about debt can feel overwhelming. While you might feel a bit nervous or uncomfortable taking the first step and telling your partner, keeping your debt hidden can make it harder to manage.

Opening up and talking to someone about debt and mental health can be difficult, but it can help to get these feelings off your chest. There is always someone who will listen whether that be a loved one, someone else you trust, or other independent organisations like Mind or Citizens Advice.

Our Time to Talk: How to talk a loved one about debt blog is a helpful page that explores how to talk about debt and mental health further including conversation starters.

How does Lowell support its customers?

At Lowell, we believe that mental health comes first, and when it comes to making contact with us; we may ask you some questions to really understand your unique circumstances. Once we know more about your situation; we will be able to tailor a solution to your needs, ensuring that you are made aware of any free advice organisations that can help, and also allowing you some time to get the support you need by placing your account on hold if necessary.

Setting up a flexible payment plan

Everybody’s situation is different. That’s why when you deal with your Lowell debts, you can tailor your payment plan to fit you and your finances. For example, you can choose how frequently you make payments whether that be every week, every fortnight, every four weeks, or every month, and when you start paying.

At Lowell, we wish to offer customers as much flexibility as possible when making payments. You can make regular payments by Direct Debits or by using your debit card. For single, one-off payments, you can pay by debit card, cheque, or online banking. We want to make the process as smooth as possible, so if you’d like to pay using a different method or want to find out more then please do get in touch.

Outside of your regular payments, you also have the ability to make a one-off payment by debit card using the online portal or by calling us. And, if you don’t want to speak to us over the phone about your payment plan, you can register your Lowell account online yourself.

Other ways can Lowell support you with your mental health and debt

If your circumstances have changed and your current payment plan is no longer suitable or you’re struggling for any reason, please let us know. This is so we can work with you to see what we can do to help.

As a customer of Lowell, you don’t need to fill in a debt and mental health evidence form (DMHEF) to let us know if you’re struggling. Once you get in touch with us about your situation, we will be able to offer you support.

If it’s right for your circumstances, we might be able to pause payments for a short while until you’re ready. During this time, you won’t hear from us and once we do get back in touch, we’ll work with you to see what the best solution is going forward.

We’re always here to listen and help. Our friendly team are trained to always be understanding of your situation and help find a solution. You can reach the team via phone, live chat, post, or through an enquiry form.

As a Lowell customer, your well-being is our top priority and we want to make sure that you feel fully supported on your journey to becoming debt-free with Lowell. We also have another blog on how we support our customers’ mental health that you can check out for even more information.

If you need some additional support, then please get in touch with our friendly team. You can check out the Lowell blog and our debt guidance hub for more articles on debt and financial support.

First published: 14th March, 2023

If you're a Lowell customer and you have concerns or queries about your debt with us, then please do get in touch. Our friendly and supportive team will be more than happy to help.