Pay off debts – make payment arrangements

If you are in danger of getting into trouble with a certain amount of debt, it is best to take immediate action to prevent worse. It may be a huge hurdle to cross. Once you have done this, you will notice that you can use the same method again and again with different creditors to resolve debts through a payment arrangement. The best way to solve your financial problems is to reach an arrangement with all creditors. To do this, first identify all creditors, then write to them and make them a proposal for a repayment arrangement.

All creditors mapped out/in a row

Before you can write to all your creditors, you first need to know exactly what it is about. Identify all creditors by listing them. Also note the debt you have outstanding for each party. Write the final payment dates behind it. If you map all your creditors in this way, you will get a good idea of which ones are the most important to start with. The ones that demand money from you the fastest, in combination with the product or service they provide (for example gas and electricity), are therefore the most important.

Write to creditors

Draft a polite letter that you can send to all creditors. Write the basics of the letter in such a way that you can use it again and again. If you do this, you only have to adjust the names and numbers/amounts, and don’t have to write a letter from scratch every time. The structure of the letter must consist of a paragraph in which you ask for an arrangement to be made and collection measures to be stopped. You can also include a paragraph in which you request that payments be temporarily stopped. However, only do the latter with the larger creditors. They often have more equity and can go a few months without your repayment than smaller creditors. By asking for this you will have more time to pay off other debts first.

Drawing up the interim balance of the debts

Once you have sent a letter to all creditors, you have to wait for the responses. If you have received different answers, you must incorporate them into the first overview you have created in which all creditors are listed. Make a careful note of the arrangements you have made with the various creditors. This gives you a good overview of what you need to pay off and when. Keep a close eye on your repayment space that you have each month.

Make a proposal for a repayment arrangement

When and how do you make a proposal for a repayment arrangement to a creditor? If your maximum repayment limit each month is lower than the sum of all repayments you have to make in one month, you can try to make an arrangement with all creditors. You create a repayment proposal by adding up all debts and then using the maximum repayment limit as a factor in the calculation. An example:



Debt/total * maximum repayment limit

Monthly proposal

Energy supplier


2,000/ 8,000 * 100


Telephone provider


1,500/ 8,000 * 100




4,500/ 8,000 * 100






(This example assumes a maximum repayment limit of €100 per month) Include this overview in the letter so that each individual creditor has insight into the total debt. This way a creditor can better understand your situation. This increases the chance of success of the proposed repayment arrangement. Only once all creditors have agreed to the proposed arrangements can you start making the new monthly repayments. If you are unable to reach an agreement with all creditors, it is better to seek professional help. Places where this is possible are, for example, a credit bank or a company that resolves debts.

Professional help in solving debts

If the interest per creditor is higher than the proposed amount in the scheme, you will not gain anything from it. Even if you have very little repayment space each month, which means that paying off all debts will take a very long time (longer than 3 years), it is better to seek help. You can then engage a company or go to a credit bank that can professionally guide you in resolving all debts.