Our commitment to you
We're committed to treating customers sympathetically and positively when they’re experiencing difficulties and we'll do our best to help those who are having problems with their debts.
If you're worried you may be starting to have financial difficulties or are already having problems with your debt, it's important that you speak to us as soon as possible. We’ll do everything we can to help you solve your problems.
There are also a number of places that provide free and impartial debt advice. These organisations are not associated with cahoot and can help you to manage your creditors and debt problems.
Many people face financial worries at some point in their lives. Getting help and advice sooner rather than later is important and can help make sure the problem doesn't get any worse. We're committed to treating our customers sympathetically when they're having difficulties, and we'll do our best to help you if you think you might be having financial problems.
In these pages you’ll find more information about how we and others, may be able to help if you have money worries.
If you’re not in arrears
If you’re up to date with all your payments to us and have a general enquiry, call us on 0330 678 2811
If you are in arrears
If you have missed a payment or feel you may miss a payment, please contact our specialist teams on the numbers below. They will be able to help you with information on the next steps:
Before you call us please take a few minutes to write down exactly what you have coming in and out of your accounts each month. A budget planner can help with this. If you don’t have one to hand, you can find some in our ‘taking control’ section.
If you’d like to get some help before you talk to us, here are some helpful, free debt advice organisations you can speak to:
Money and Pension Service
StepChange Debt Charity
PayPlan Debt Charity
Money Advice Trust
The first step in getting back on track is to recognise that you may be experiencing financial difficulties.
- Find out how much money you have coming into your household and how much you have going out.
- Make sure you can pay for essential items such as your mortgage or rent, council tax, food and utility bills.
- Take some time to list how much you owe and who you owe it to.
- Use a budget planning tool like the ones below to calculate what you have left each month.
The idea of looking at your budget may feel daunting and it may even be something you’ve never done before. But it’s your first step towards getting back on track.
Take a look at the budget planner provided by the Money Advice Service – a free tool which may help you with putting you back in control of your household spending.
When you've worked out your budget, you should get in touch with the people you owe money to (often known as creditors) to let them know how you propose to pay your debts. The most convenient way to do this is to phone them and offer a copy of your budget planner to support your proposals. Alternatively, independent debt advice agencies will do this for you. Please note that some of these organisations may make a charge for their services.
If you do have enough money to make your payments but sometimes find they're not being paid on the most suitable date or in the best way, it may be beneficial to contact the company to discuss options. Changing Direct Debit dates to when you're paid may often help.
It's also a good idea to check price comparison sites to see if you could save money on regular payments such as energy, broadband and insurance bills. And, in case you're entitled to benefits you're not claiming, take a look at the Department of Work and Pensions website.
If you're struggling to work out your budget, you can contact us directly for help and support. Check our 'Talk to us' section for more information. Our 'Independent advice' section also has contact details of useful organisations that may be able to help.
Money management tools
To help you manage your money, you can choose to receive an email, text message or both when certain activity has happened on your current account or credit card. Select as many alerts as you like.
You’ll be automatically registered to receive a credit card alert when nearing your credit limit to help you avoid fees, and we’ll send you other messages to notify you of certain activity on your account. These will be sent via email, text message, both or by letter and where not required for regulatory purposes, we’ll give you the option to opt out.
These alerts are free, and it’s important you’ve registered a mobile number on your account to ensure you receive them. You can choose to stop receiving alerts and check or update the mobile number registered on your account using Online Banking, or by calling us on 0330 678 2811
We made changes to alerts to help you avoid or minimise charges. Details about these changes and which products they apply to are detailed below.
We’ll automatically start sending you text alerts to help you avoid charges when your account has entered an arranged or unarranged overdraft position, for example, because of a regular payment (e.g. direct debit).
We’ve simplified the Alerts Service clause in our General Terms and Conditions to advise you that if the alert is not a regulatory requirement, we’ll give you the option to opt-out.
An overdraft can give you a bit of extra money for unexpected times. However, it’s important to remember that we charge you to use it.
The current account section below details the rates, fees, and charges that apply before and after the change.
An overdraft lets you borrow through your current account. It’s intended mainly for short term costs or emergencies and isn’t generally suitable for longer-term borrowing. There is a cost associated with using an overdraft. The way you manage your overdraft may affect your credit file which could make it harder to get credit with us or other providers in the future.
Overdrafts depend on your circumstances and you must repay any overdraft when we ask in line with our General Terms and Conditions. We may ask you to repay all or part of your overdraft at any time but we'll try to notify you of this in advance
An arranged overdraft is when we let you borrow up to a pre-agreed limit – you can ask for an arranged overdraft when you open your account or at any other time. The amount we agree to lend you will vary depending on your personal circumstances.
An unarranged overdraft occurs when your account goes overdrawn without an arranged overdraft in place or if your account goes over your arranged overdraft limit.
When you try to make a payment that would take you into an unarranged overdraft, we make the decision whether to allow or reject the payment based on your individual circumstances. If we allow a payment, it will take you into an unarranged overdraft. We don’t charge fees for refusing a payment due to lack of funds or allowing a payment despite lack of funds on this account.
Our cost calculator helps you understand the costs associated with using an overdraft facility
Did you know?
Monthly fee cap: There is no cap on Arranged overdraft interest
Free account alerts: You can set up an account alert to warn you when you don’t have enough money in your account to cover a payment. This will give you a chance to put money in your account before 4pm and avoid the fee.
The best way to stay in control of your credit card payments is to set up a Direct Debit. You can choose to set up your Direct Debit through Online Banking or by contacting our customer services team.
For example, you can pay:
- the full balance;
- the minimum monthly payment; or
- any fixed amount of your choice greater than your minimum payment
If you can afford to, you can set up a monthly fixed payment that is the same as or more than your current minimum payment. That way you’ll pay your balance off more quickly, as each month you’ll be making more than the minimum payment.
There are organisations that can help you with money worries as well as help you understand whether you’re entitled to more benefits or any other type of help. cahoot isn’t associated with these organisations. Please note that some of these organisations may make a charge for their services.
Support with gambling and financial abuse
We’re here to help
Gambling can be an enjoyable leisure activity when done in moderation. However, for some it can get out of control and cause harm. This is when it starts to have a negative impact on your finances, relationships, health or work. If you feel your gambling or someone else’s gambling may be causing you harm, there is help available.
Signs your gambling may be causing harm to you, or someone close to you:
- You’re struggling to pay for the basics – such as rent or your mortgage, bills, food and other essential costs, as you’ve spent your money on gambling.
- Your debt has increased due to your gambling spend.
- You feel stressed or worried about the impact gambling is having on your finances, relationships or health.
- You may be spending significant time on gambling or hiding your gambling from others.
- You start to withdraw from other people or activities.
If you are worried about how gambling is impacting you, there are steps you can take to help yourself:
- Pay your important bills as soon as possible after pay day, so you’re less likely to gamble that money.
- Think about planning other things to do at times when you might be tempted to gamble (such as sporting activities or seeing friends who don’t gamble, for example).
- Don’t bottle up your concerns: talk to someone - a friend, a close family member, a colleague at work or a professional.
What other help is out there?
Gambling and debt
Gambling can have a negative impact on your finances. Some people may find that their gambling causes an increase in their debts. Gambling should not be seen as a way to make money or pay off your debts. If you’re worried about the impact gambling is having on your finances, look at our help and support page, as well as guidance on what steps you can take to manage your finances.
GamCare operate the National Gambling Helpline, providing confidential information, advice and support for anyone worried about gambling (whether you gamble yourself or are affected by someone else’s gambling) across England, Scotland and Wales.
Call freephone 0808 8020 133 or use web chat at www.GamCare.org.uk (Home - GamCare - The leading provider of support for anyone affected by problem gambling in Great Britain), 24 hours a day, every day of the year. Advisers can provide information about, or refer you to, other important support services (such as debt and financial advice services), and your conversation is completely confidential. GamCare are part of the National Gambling Treatment Service, and can link you with other gambling support as needed.
GamCare have a partnership with Gamban and GAMSTOP to provide a combination of practical tools and support. Callers to the National Gambling Helpline will be offered Gamban blocking software which can block access to online gambling sites. Callers will also be signposted to register for GAMSTOP - the national online self-exclusion scheme preventing people from access gambling accounts from all licensed gambling sites in UK. For further information, visit TALKBANSTOP
Look at our help and support page for details on where else you can get help with your finances.
What is financial abuse?
Financial abuse is when one person controls another person's ability to manage or access their own money.
We understand that financial abuse can happen in day-to-day life, and that it can go unnoticed if the victim feels they can't talk to someone about what’s happening to them. Although financial abuse is most commonly found in personal relationships, it can also be found in other circumstances, for example: an elderly person could be led by a family member or carer to withdraw money when it may not be in their best interest.
Examples of financial abuse include:
- preventing someone from accessing their own account, or a joint account
- stealing money from a partner or family member
- putting debts in a partner's name or family member’s name
- stopping another person from going to work
- taking advantage of someone with a mental or physical impairment to take money from them.
Get in touch
It takes a lot of courage for an individual to speak up and tell someone that this is happening to them or someone they care about.
We want you to be able to talk to us so we can try and help you. Please contact us on 0330 678 2811 (or +44 1908 937 222 if calling from abroad). We’re open Monday-Friday 8am-6pm, and Saturday 9am-5pm so we can discuss your concerns in the strictest confidence and offer you the help and support that you need.
If you’re experiencing a situation that’s affecting the way you manage your finances, it can be helpful to tell us so you don’t need to repeat yourself every time you speak to us.
Let us know by logging on to Online Banking, please send a secure message from the online banking 'Help & contact us' and we’ll record it with your consent. You can also tell us over the phone by contacting us on the number above.
You may also find our financial abuse consumer information leaflet helpful. It contains information to help you arrange your finances during this difficult time and details of organisations and charities which support victims of abuse.
Please be aware: keep up-to-date on how you can protect yourselves and your loved ones from fraud, by taking a look at our security pages