There are many ways in which an individual can get into debt, whether the individual is affected by unexpected circumstances or simply gets a bit too carried away with overspending on items they don't really need. Here are a few of the biggest causes of debt:

· Living beyond your means: As we live in a 'I want it now' culture, people might very well be easily tempted to overspend, wanting to get something new the minute it comes out, whether it's a new car, gadget or fashion fad that's just hit the stores. it is one large, costly item (e.g. a new motor) or lots of less expensive items (e.g. new gadgets), it can all add up, and if somebody can't afford it without the assistance of credit then they really shouldn't be considering of buying whatever it is in the first place.

· Redundancy: Numerous people have been struck by redundancies due to the current economic climate, whether directly (themselves) or indirectly (a relative). Unfortunately, some people who have been made redundant might have been relying on credit as well as their salary to make purchases. It is even worse when a family-run business is affected, or in instances where a number of members of a family working at the same business are all affected. If not hit directly by redundancy, others have seen their hours cut - and their salary - and bonuses reduced.

· An expanding family: Whether it is a surprise welcome or expected, a pitter-patter of little feet might also lead to the cha-ching of not-so-little expenditures. Baby products tend to be rather expensive, and if financial planning before the arrival has not been fully thought out, the parents-to-be may find themselves buying more than they'd previously planned, which can result in the need to accept credit. On top of that, paternity and maternity leave will also have its effect on income - in the form of lower wages - when taken out.

· Divorce & separation: When going through a divorce or separation, if one of the couple involved continues to live in the same home as before, they may find it a lot more difficult on his or her salary to keep on top of expenses and payments that the two of them might have paid between them previously. Also, in some situations, the one person's debts may be split between both parties,just in the same way that assets can be split. That's not even taking into account how expensive a process divorce is anyway, with the costly legal and lawyer fees involved.