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Fee Vs Free: What you get when you pay for debt advice

Moneymagpie Team 6th Feb 2024 No Comments

Reading Time: 3 minutes

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It should be said, straight-up, that if you need any help or advice regarding debt then contacting the right person comes first and foremost. Hiding away from it can cause even larger issues later down the line, so picking up the phone and making that call is a step in the right direction. Whoever you speak to, make sure that first phone call is designed to aid you and offer objective help.

Making sure you get the advice is key – and you should make sure that the organisation you speak to is properly regulated and can also provide advice on all the solutions out there.

In this article we are going to look at what the free services offer and what the paid-for ones should offer, and help you make the right choice for your first port of call.

What Do You Get When You Pay a Fee?

It is important to say when searching for a debt advice firm that you should always check legitimacy and policy.

With both the free and the paid for services, the initial phone call should always offer you free advice.

Jonathan Mills from Debt Advice firm, MoneyPlus, states that this should always be the case and reminds us that “our advisors won’t enter you into a paid plan if it isn’t for you. We regularly send people to the free services if it means avoiding further financial issues.” He also makes it clear that you won’t enter into a contract unless totally agreed to – “you could be chatting to our advisors for a long time and that will all be free, highly trained advice. You don’t suddenly get an invoice, this is free. It is only when you agree to a type of plan and talk through the repayment that the fees will arise, and only then will they be affordable to you.”

What he does remind us is why sometimes it is in fact worth paying a fee. “Debt isn’t always to do with not having the money and is often the result of struggling with financial planning: the free services are set up to help people in dire need and are often oversubscribed due to the sad financial climate at present.”
Being able to delegate the entire case and have legal bodies fight your corner is huge when dealing with the legalities of financial planning. Using a debt advice firm to do this will also often be cheaper than a team of lawyers. Just be sure to do your research when picking who to work with. Trustpilot often offer a clean picture as to who to trust.
  • Initial phone call is free
  • The possibility of saving money on your repayment amount – whilst this isnt a guarantee, we know that a majority of single account holders do in fact achieve the cessation of interest and charges. When this happens, MoneyPlus average customer sees a saving of £366.86 in month one after setting up a plan (even after they take their fee). 
  • They can set up a plan pretty quickly as they don’t have an issue with oversubscription
  • Takes all legal dealings away from individual
  • Removes a lot of stress
  • Ideal for those who struggle with money management
  • You can’t afford to pay

What if you Can’t Afford to Pay?

Sadly avoiding it won’t make the debt go away and an arrangement will still need to be sought with your debtors in order to overcome your debt. A debt advise company will talk you through your options and show you how this can be done.

Are there Free Debt Advice Charities?

There are also free debt advice charities such as StepChange, Turn2us and CMA.


If you pick wisely then there are pros and cons of any kind of debt advice agency. Whatever you choose, the most important step you will take is to reach out. Don’t suffer in silence and, instead, let your journey to being debt free start now.

If you are interested in looking at some of the myths surrounding debt then read our article here.


Disclaimer: MoneyMagpie is not a licensed financial advisor and therefore information found here including opinions, commentary, suggestions or strategies are for informational, entertainment or educational purposes only. This should not be considered as financial advice. Anyone thinking of investing should conduct their own due diligence.

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Jasmine Birtles

Your money-making expert. Financial journalist, TV and radio personality.

Jasmine Birtles

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