Household borrowing and arrears linked to pandemic have soared to £10.3bn

Britain is “sleepwalking into a debt crisis” after a steep rise in emergency borrowing by low- and middle-income households to cope with the Covid-19 jobs crisis.

Research by the debt charity Stepchange found that household borrowing and arrears linked to the coronavirus pandemic have soared 66% since May to £10.3bn. The number of people who are in severe debt has risen to 1.2 million – nearly doubling since March – with a further 3 million people at risk of falling into arrears after taking on extra short-term loans.

Related: Financial first aid: how to make it through the second Covid lockdown

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