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Need for debt advice 2023

14 Mar 2024

MaPS annual Need for Debt survey results for 2023

The Money and Pension Service (MaPS) have recently published their annual Need for Debt Advice survey results for 2023 (publ. 29th February 2024).

The results of the research indicate that the need for debt advice has not changed significantly since their 2022 research, but the level of people considered ‘at risk’ has increased significantly (by approximately 2 million people).



61% or about 32.5 million people didn’t need debt advice

64% or about 34 million people didn’t need debt advice

24% or about 12.6 million people are ‘at risk’ of needing debt advice

20% or about 10.6 million people were ‘at risk’ of needing debt advice

15% or about 8.1 million people need debt advice

16% or about 8.5 million people needed debt advice

Profile of people in need of advice

As part of the research report MaPS develop a profile of who needs debt advice. For 2023 they have identified that the profile of people hasn’t changed a great deal either, and people are typically:

       Under 35 years old.

  •        In households with children and low incomes (73% have an annual household income of less than £30,000 before tax).

  •        Most (61%) rent their home from social or private landlords and a further 28% own their house on a mortgage.

  •        People needing debt advice are from ethnic minority communities (31%), which make up less than 20% of the adult population as a whole. 

  •        They also were more likely to have experienced an income shock in the previous three years, like redundancy or a drop in earnings.


As part of the 2023 research, MaPS identified the approximate levels of need for debt advice in each parliamentary constituency – see the MaPS page (link below) to download a full list.


In Liverpool, the parliamentary constituency results are all above the national average of 15% of the population:

Garston & Halewood – 16%

Riverside – 19.6%

Walton – 20.4%

Wavertree – 16.6%

West Derby – 17.4%


People ‘at risk’ of needing debt advice

MaPS define people ‘at risk’ of needing debt advice as people who are struggling to keep up with bills and credit commitments, or they are running short of money for essentials and using high-cost credit instead. For those ‘at risk’ creditors have not started action against them yet.

Generally those ‘at risk’ of needing debt are:

  •        Under 65, (38% are under 35, and 51% are under 65)

  •        Have a gross annual income under £30,000 per year

  •        Rent their home (private renting 23%, or social landlord renting 21%) or own their home with a mortgage (35%)

  •        From an ethnic minority group (20%)

For more information on the results of the MaPS Need for debt advice 2023 research visit

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