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The Latest Debtfree DIGI

Friday, July 30, 2010

Consumer Friend hand over to ABSA at midnight tonight

For the last year Consumer Friend have been assisting ABSA with their debt review matters.

Today (the last day of their mandate from ABSA) they comunicated with Debt Counsellors country wide telling them:

"Dear Friends and Colleagues,

As you are aware, our Debt Review Mandate on behalf of ABSA Bank has reached its date of completion and that the responsibilities associated with this portfolio will be returned to the ABSA team as of 1 August 2010...We wish ABSA all the best in their new Debt Review Department and wish to advise the debt counselling community that it was an absolute pleasure interacting with your offices. We also wish to advise that it is business as usual for our retails clients. Many thanks- Justin Van Der Linde,Consumer Friend"

Most Debt Counsellors will reply that it has been a pleasure for them in dealing with Consumer Friend in these ABSA matters. Here's hoping that things will run as smoothly at the new ABSA Debt Review Department.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

The Court Process

The recent Task Team on Debt Counselling stated that:"an average of 7,500 new applications being received per month" and that "Only about 10% of the new applications are being resolved through the courts"

The Task Team concluded that the backlogs in the debt review process at present are
being caused by a complex set of factors related to:
a) Severe capacity constraints in the judicial system.

We hope to see some improvement in this area as the Magestrates become more familiar with the process and the Creditors stop opposoing matters for no good reason.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Task Team finds lack of "follow-up support "

According to the Task team report that has been published this month Mr. Gabriel Davel says that "the report highlights that there are shortcomings on the part of both debt counsellors and credit providers. He notes that many Debt Counsellors do not ...provide follow-up support to consumers to ensure that they continued to meet their financial obligations under the new arrangements."

We suggest that you offer your clients a chance to receive Debtfree DIGI each month.This will help them to focus on their debt review and to learn more about the industry.

All you need to do is send your clients a link to the publication online for free or ask us to do it for you
(there is no charge to DC's for this service)

Please mail the email addresses of your clients who you would like to receive an invite to read Debtfree DIGI online to:

These contact details will be treated as confidential and your clients will not receive any unsolicited material from anyone.

Friday, July 23, 2010

ABSA contact details as of August 1 2010

As of August 1st 2010 ABSA Debt Review Department will be using new contact details.From this date Consumer Friend will no longer be handling their Debt Counselling matters.

The new details are:

Debt Review Call centre: 0861 005 901

17.1s- Fax: 0865 848 579
17.2s- Fax: 0865 848 579
17.3s- Fax: 0865 848 579
17.4s- Fax: 0865 848 579
Proposals- Fax: 0865 848 671
Court Documents- Fax: 0865 848 662

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Are you a DRS member?

We are happy to anounce that as of August 2010 Debtfree DIGI will be featuring a Special DEBT RESTRUCURING SERVICES section in our Service Directory.

If you are a DRS member you would qualify to be listed under this section and we invite you to contact for pricing details.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

July 2010 Issue of Debtfree DIGI

We hope you are enjoying the latest issue of Debtfree DIGI.

If you want to, please feel free to get your clients to read the magazine too.
Debtfree even offer a service of notifying your clients (on your behalf) that a new issue is out.

Many DC's find that this helps remind their clients of their obligation to pay or to inform their DC's if anything strange has come up.It also helps reduce the feeling of isolation from the debt review process which can arrise.

If you are a consumer under debt review have a look at the articles discussing the NCR and who they are as well as the articles on how to still have fun even though you may have limited funds available. Also check out the shopping tips article.

Happy reading and please feel free to comment/mail us your thoughts on articles you would like to see or contribute towards.


Wednesday, July 14, 2010

5th NCR Consumer Credit Report

Gabriel Davel, CEO of the National Credit Regulator (NCR), said that the latest NCR statistics indicate a significant recovery in consumer credit.

The NCR released its fifth ‘Consumer Credit Report’, which is based on data submitted to it by registered credit providers. This fifth edition covers credit market information from December 2008 up to December 2009.

The total value of new credit grantedincreased from R53,58 billion in the quarter ended September 2009 to R63.30 billion for the quarter ended December 2009 , an increase of 18.13% compared to the previous quarter, though still a decline of 3.75% compared to the previous year. This indicates that after a two year period of ongoing decline in the volume of credit granted, credit volumes may be recovering.

The number of consumers applying for credit increased by 11.03% when compared to the quarter ended September 2009.

The number of consumers whose applications for credit have been declined, remained at 44%.

The following were some of the most significant trends:

• The value of new mortgages granted increased by 18.33% from R17.82 billion in September 2009 to R21.08 billion in December 2009

• Secured credit which is dominated by vehicle finance, showed an increase from R20.17 billion in September 2009 to R23.67 billion in December 2009
(a quarter on quarter increase of 17.32%)

• Unsecured credit increased from R8.37 billion in September 2009 to R10.54 billion in December 2009 (a quarter on quarter increase of 25.83%)

• Individuals who earn gross monthly income of more than R15, 000 per month received on average 80% of the mortgages granted over the period December 2008 to December 2009.

The NCR pointed out that although this was the most significant increase in credit granted for two years, the gross value of credit granted for the quarter was still significantly lower than the amount granted prior to the period of contraction.

R63.3 billion of credit was extended in the December 2009 quarter, compared to R102.3 billion for the December 2007 quarter.

The position for mortgages is similar, with R21.08 billion in mortgages granted in this quarter compared to R53.14 billion in the quarter to December 2007.

Unsecured credit has grown most significantly, with a growth of 25.8% over the last quarter and an increase of 32.7% since the December 2007 quarter.

As at December 2009, the total outstanding consumer credit balances
(or gross debtors’book) was R1.13 trillion.

The breakdown was as follows:
Mortgages accounted for R740.95 billion (65.38%)
“Secured credit agreements” was R211.98 billion (18.70%)
Credit facilities were R125.14 billion (11.04%)
Unsecured credit was R54.60 billion (4.82%)
Short term credit was R692.93 million (0.06%).

The banks’ share of the total outstanding consumer credit as at December 2009 was R1,01 trillion (89.35%) with the retailers at R39,27 billion (3.46%), non-bank vehicle financiers at R36,74 billion (3.24%) and “Other credit providers” at R44,68 billion (3.94%)
(Other credit providers consist primarily of pension backed lenders, insurers, non-bank mortgage lenders and securitized debt)

Though these statistics lag behind where we stand today, they show a definite change in the consumer credit market.

Special thanks to:
Bullion PR & Communication
Lola Lazarus
On behalf of:
National Credit Regulator
Lebogang Selibi
Tel: (011) 554-2722

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Are things getting better?

Gabriel Davel, CEO of the National Credit Regulator, recently said that nearly half (45.3%) of the 18.07 million credit-active, consumers on record are struggling to meet their debt obligations.

Further analysis shows the growth in the number of accounts falling within the three plus months’ arrears category has risen by just over half a million accounts to 10.16 million in the quarter ended December 2009. It does appear that the rate at which consumers are falling into the impaired record category is slowing.

The number of consumers with impaired records is still increasing, with an increase of 90,000 over the previous quarter and an increase of 880,000 over the previous year. However, the percentage increase is the lowest that it has been for 2 years, indicating that the level of debt stress may be easing.

And with the prospect of possible rate cuts ahead this should encourage consumers

Thanks to:
Issued by:
Bullion PR & Communication
Lola Lazarus

On behalf of:
National Credit Regulator
Lebogang Selibi
Tel: (011) 554-2722

Sunday, July 11, 2010

What is ABSA up to?

ABSA have sent out a message to all DC's talking about changes in their Debt Review Department/ Practices. Pascal Sinclair the head of Business Partner Interaction, Debt Review said:" the Debt Review Team is very excited ... and it is hoped that once you know about it, you will be equally excited.
This development stands to bring positive changes to Absa’s Debt Review processes which you will also benefit from. This is just but a taste of what is to come and we will keep you posted on the big announcement."

Meetings with DC's to communicate the changes will be held on the following dates and venues:

JHB – 14th July at DCASA meeting in Krugersdorp

KZN – 19th July at DCASA meeting in Durban

WC – 21st July at DCASA meeting in Cape Town

You are welcome to attend these informative forums and interact with ABSA.
DCASA Members will attend for free.
At this point we are unsure if there will be any charge for non members.

All other regions will receive the detailed communication in the form of an email in due course.

Friday, July 9, 2010

DCASA Meetings for July (Western Cape)

If you are in the Western Cape and are interested in staying in touch with other DC's and whats going on with DCASA you are welcome to attend the DCASA meetings held in the Cape Town area.

Here is a list of the up coming DCASA meetings for the rest of the month and beginning of August.

14 July (10h00) DCASA Feedback Meeting.
21 July (12h00) ABSA Bank Talk to DCASA
4 August (TBA) Easton-Berry Attorneys Talk to DCASA

Members: Free
Non Members: R50.00

If you need to find out more about venues etc please call Kornel Steyn (Phone: 086 111 5695).

Thursday, July 1, 2010

25% Eskom hike from today

Eskoms 25% increase in tariff (the first of 3 that will see the cost of electricity increase 100% over 3 years) kicks in from today. So it may be time to turn off the heater and grab a jersey. Debt Counsellors will want to factor these increasing costs into there debt restructuring proposals.

Also from today the W Cape Municipalities charges for waste and water will be increasing by 10%.