PRESS RELEASE

Agency: Credit Counselling Service of Sault Ste. Marie & District

Topic: Benefits of Budgeting Skills - Statistics

Phone: 705-254-1424

Date: 1/19/98

 

Statistics Show Long Term Benefits of Budgeting Skills

Sault Ste. Marie, January 19, 1998. Are you starting the New Year with an old image a mountain of bills and no ideas about how to pay them? Dont despair, according to recent figures from the Ontario Association of Credit Counselling Services (OACCS), learning how to manage your money now can build good habits that last well beyond 1998.

The OACCS represents 26 not-for-profit agencies across Ontario assisting people to manage their money and their debt. Year-end figures from member agencies show that less than two percent of the people who complete an OACCS program never return as clients.

"Of 18,096 new clients across the province last year, only 365 were re-opened cases," says Greg Elsby, Executive Director of Credit Counselling Service. "That percentage has remained constant for at least the last four years. We believe these statistics validate the long-term benefits of credit counselling. Another positive indicator was the number of people attending financial management education sessions, which was up 58 percent. The more people know about planning, budgeting and managing their debt, the fewer financial hardships they and their families will encounter."

Credit counselling agencies provide a variety of services including debt repayment plans based on the clients ability to pay, short term intervention with creditors, as well as detailed advice on money and debt management.

Greg Elsby stresses that the first and most effective step to any long-term financial solution is to establish a budget. "That means setting goals, assessing your resources, establishing a spending plan, learning to control your spending and finally, taking time out to assess your progress regularly. Even the few minutes a week it takes to do some proper record keeping can pay off many times over."

The Ontario Association of Credit Counselling Services is an association of 26 not-for-profit agencies across the province. All agencies provide a range of no or low cost services to help people solve their financial problems and improve their consumer and money management skills. For more information about credit counselling services in Sault Ste. Marie, please contact Credit Counselling Services of Sault Ste. Marie & District, 298 Queen Street East, Suite 2, Sault Ste. Marie, ON, P6A 1Y7 or visit our website at www.soonet.ca/ccs or call the toll free line at 1-888-7-IN-DEBT.

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