The scale of Britain's debt problem has been put into numbers - £1.43 trillion, or £54,000 per household.
The Centre for Social Justice (CSJ) says thousands of people are caught in a "perfect storm" of rising living costs, falling real-term wages and expensive credit.
In its report 'Maxed Out', the CSJ says people are awake "into the early hours worrying about their personal finances and their bills".
And it says that for many their debt has become "unhealthy and unmanageable".
Our Consumer Editor Chris Choi spoke to two families in two different areas, both dealing with the cost of living crisis, with contrasting fortunes: