More than one in three Scots are worried they will not be able to pay their bills this year, a new poll has found.
Almost a third (32%) are also concerned about the cost of living and anxious about being able to afford food and clothing.
The poll of 1,006 adults across Scotland for Advice Direct Scotland revealed 34% were either “quite worried” or “very worried” about fixed monthly costs such as mortgage or rent payments, energy bills and insurance.
Of the 654 respondents who had credit cards, just over half (51%) said they could afford to pay off their balance each month while almost a quarter (23%) are only able to pay off the minimum amount required each month.
The survey, carried out by polling firm Survation, also showed 44% have reduced spending on non-essential items during the pandemic, 28% cut down on food and groceries and 20% dipped into saving to cover expenses.
Andrew Bartlett, chief executive of Advice Direct Scotland, said: “This poll paints a stark picture of the level of financial worry faced by many Scots.
“More than a third are concerned about paying their monthly commitments over the next year, and just under a third are worried about their living costs.
“It’s clear that the pandemic has had a devastating financial impact on many families in Scotland, with many reducing their outgoings and even dipping into their savings.
“A significant proportion of Scots with a credit card are also struggling to pay off the minimum balance.”
The poll was carried out ahead of Advice Direct Scotland launching a service to provide free information and support with debt-related issues.
Mr Bartlett continued: “For those concerned about their financial commitments, we’re very pleased to have launched moneyadvice.scot, adding free debt advice to our extensive advice service.
“Our specialist debt advisers are on hand if you have personal financial worries, are struggling with debt, or need a way of getting back on track.”