Bankruptcy – the First Step towards Financial Freedom
An out-of-control credit card and a downturn in the building industry had Peter (he did not want his surname published), a self-employed bricklayer, drowning in debt.
The tradie said his troubles started when he incurred a large ATO debt and tried to pay it off using his credit card. At the same time he started falling behind in his repayments on a personal loan.
He said not knowing how much he was going to earn from week to week made it virtually impossible for him to set up any type of repayment plan.
“I could not see any way of working my way out of the situation,” he said.
With Australians under more financial stress than ever before, Peter’s story is becoming more and more common.
ME’s latest Household Financial Comfort Report shows that with subdued and stagnant incomes, more Australians are feeling strapped for cash, and being forced to dip into their savings just to cover day to day living expenses.
The report also revealed that while the number of families forced to use their savings to survive was on the rise, 25 per cent of Australian families have less than $1000 in cash savings.
The same report found that 19 per cent of Australians had sought financial help from friends and family in the past year, and 15 per cent had sold or pawned something to pay for necessities.
It also revealed that 42 per cent of households still had the same income as a year ago, while 24 per cent had their incomes cut and just 34 per cent have increased incomes from a year ago.
Bankrupt Advisory Centre CEO, Andrew Bell, said they received calls every day from people who could not see any way out of their situation.
“The first thing I do is let them know that it is great they have been trying to do the right thing and pay everyone back,” Mr Bell said.
“By the time they come to us they are already in a situation where they can’t pay their bills or feed themselves or their families. The only way to turn things around is to start looking after themselves and their own family.”
Mr Bell said very few people fully understood what it meant to declare bankruptcy. The most frequently asked questions were:
- Will everyone know?
- Will I lose my house?
- Will I lose my car?
- Will I be able to travel after declaring Bankruptcy?
He said there was no requirement to publicise the fact you have been forced to declare bankruptcy.
“The whole process is stressful enough without having to deal with the added stress of making it public,” he said.
“In, respect to the other questions, the answers vary from case to case, but as general advice, as long as you meet the requirements of your Bankruptcy Trustee, you will not necessarily lose your house or car or your ability to travel.
“Equally importantly for those who have been dealing with the stress and pressure of trying to cope with growing debt, within 3 to 10 days of declaring Bankruptcy the weight of debt is lifted off your shoulders and you can begin to focus on moving forward in your life.”
In the case of bricklayer Peter, his greatest concern was the horror stories he had heard from other people about Bankruptcy.
Peter said he got to the point where he did not know where to turn and only made an appointment with the Bankruptcy Advisory Centre out of desperation.
He said the staff were very sympathetic and immediately set about outlining the best way to deal with his situation.
With a better understanding of what it meant to declare Bankruptcy Peter, with the assistance of Bankruptcy Advisory Centre, the documents to enter into Bankruptcy were lodged and while he still has a long way to go to achieve financial independence, he said: “life has never been better”.
Mr Bell said Peter’s experience was typical of many of their clients. By the time people contact Bankruptcy Advisory Centre they are desperate and highly stressed. In a very short time we can eliminate the financial burden that has become all-consuming and put them on a path toward getting their life back on track.
I made an appointment with Andrew after finding him on google. I was nervous and apprehensive about what to expect but he made the process of bankruptcy extremely uncomplicated and stress free, allowing myself the opportunity to get the fresh start I was so desperate for. Thank you Andrew I could not recommend you enough.
Making the decision to go bankrupt was not easy however once I had spoken to Andrew i felt all my anxiety disappear. Andrew does not judge you and he has an innate ability to put you at ease. He took care of the whole process for me again reducing the stress involved with completing paperwork.
Thank you very much.
I will definitely recommend Andrew Bell to anyone contemplating bankruptcy. Don't wait! Andrew is there to help. With his knowledge, he can advise you of the best path to take and assist with the mind boggling paperwork.
Best of all, he is there for you through your entire bankruptcy period. Get your life back, it's not as bad as you think. Thank you Andrew for lifting the burden and allowing me to move on.
I saw Andrew for 'advice only' on possible bankruptcy due to a divorce. Left an hour later with the paperwork all done and feeling like a new person!
Andrew was extremely welcoming and made me feel so comfortable with my decision to proceed immediately.
This was the best investment I have ever made and cannot speak highly enough of Andrew. He doesn't just give excellent service his follow up afterwards is amazing. Thankyou Andrew you made my 'new' life so easy to achieve!
Andrew was very helpful in helping me through the bankruptcy process, as a single mother left with a massive debt from my ex and our previous marriage. I was struggling to keep my head above water on a week to week basis.
Andrew made me feel at ease immediately and helped me every step of the way, he happily and professionally answered any and all questions I had before, during and after the process. Thanks so much for your help Andrew!
Would highly recommend Andrew to anyone having financial difficulties. Andrew made me feel very comfortable - he took care of everything and keep in regular contact with me throughout the whole process.
Service was fantastic and he also keep in regular contact with me when everything had been finalised Thanks Andrew! can now get my life back on track.
Very prompt service and excellent source of knowledge and information, I highly recommend Andrew's service for a quick turn around of circumstances.
Andrew put my mind at ease in one easy appointment. Very satisfied with the outcome and service provided. Highly recommend Andrew.
Andrew was a steadying hand with his advice.Showing that things aren't as bad as first thought nor any obstacle insurmountable. If you have questions needing answers, Andrew is the person to ask. Thanks for your advice Andrew.
Andrew was very knowledgeable, caring, helpful and compassionate when I went and saw him. He made me feel that I wasn’t the loser and failure that I thought I was being. Even down to the box of tissues on the table.. which I needed. Highly recommend to go see Andrew if your struggling. There is life after!
Andrew and his team do an excellent job of helping their clients with bankruptcy advice and it is a pleasure to work with him.
Don't hesitate contacting Andrew, I was stressed, struggled sleeping through debt. Andrew put me at ease. He listened to my situation and we decided on my next move. Andrew is professional and easy to talk too. I would recommend highly to anyone who wants help to give him a call. I appreciate your support Andrew. Regards Brett.
Andrew has given me back my life!!! After living paycheck to paycheck, I didn’t know what to do. Until I made the big step and booked an appointment with Andrew. As soon as I left his office I felt a huge weight lifted!!!
Andrew was prompt, organised, friendly and efficient with the processing of my documents and made everything very simple for me so I didn’t need to deal with the added pressure and stress. Thank you Andrew for allowing me to start afresh and getting it done within a matter of weeks.
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