The 27 year old Rik from The Hague was supported by the collective debt settlement. He has a debt of around 12,000 euros. It started at the age of eighteen: “I came out of a house and suddenly became responsible for things like gas, water and light bills. But I was more concerned with life: looking for social contacts, partying late into the night.”
After six years he sought help. Now the collective debt counseling is helping him. “It gives me peace of mind. I pay a part every month now and that feels good.” Rik has tips for people who are also at risk of drowning: “Don’t wait too long, look for help and don’t be ashamed. And look out for online shops where you can order on credit for hundreds of euros . shouldn’t be possible. “
The Hague has agreements with more than 30 organizations such as the housing company Vestia, the tax authorities and the health insurers VGZ and Zilveren Kruis. “But a lot of companies like Bol.com and Zalando aren’t included yet. That would make a big difference. If we have to consult with parties that aren’t affiliated, it can actually slow things down enormously,” says Vos.
Amsterdam, Den Bosch, Almelo, Eindhoven, Hollandse Kroon and Leiden are now also introducing the method. The same applies to the seven municipalities that are affiliated to the Drechtsteden social service and 67 municipalities via Kredietbank Nederland.