Joining up, debt and the army

Hi all

Just want to tell a quick story if I may and ask a few questions.

I'm a 23 year old lad, work in a bank as an analyst spreadsheet type person and to be honest its not what I saw myself doing when I was young! Now being 23 I've got the normal detrious of being in my early 20's - rented house, personal loan, mobile phone contract etc. In short I have commitments - but everything apart from the loan could be got rig of sharpish with no hassle. I could move in with my parents - house/rent gone. Phone contract ends next month - thats gone etc etc etc

So I was thinking of joining up. It is what I wanted to do as a kid and to paraphrase someone or other "Some people wake up when they're 60 and ask what difference they've made to the world. Soldiers don't have that problem".

So I went down to the ACO and was basically told 'thanks but no thanks' due to my financial commitments. Thing is, I only see the loan as a commitment. I pay 200 per month over five years (yes I was stupid to build up the debt but I'm paying it off). If I did join I know you only get a certain amount cash in hand during training but I could build up a wedge in my bank account to take care of the loan whilst in training and then once I'm out I would live in barracks and be earning approx 750p/m after deductions.

After paying the loan then on that money I'd have about 550 each months spends, which is more than I have to spend nowadays after food etc. I would actually be better off even with taking a pay cut!

Hopefully this makes sense. What I'm trying to say is there any appeals process wherby I can have a full and proper chat with someone and put this argument forward or is it a case of tough luck!

Thanks for any replies and sorry for the stupid length of the message.
I was in a similar situation to your good self and in the end, my debts got to the level where I went into an IVA. I'm 24 and ended up riddled with debt after uni.

I was worried about this being a problem, but when I went into the AFCO they said it wouldn't be an issue. I was told that as long as I could meet my financial commitments with an Army wage and have some spare, I would be ok. My outgoings total £140 per month (without rent) and I was told that as long as it's under £250 then I'd be fine. I would be taking a £6k per year wage drop to go in, but the guy I spoke to seemed perfectly happy with it all.

Might be worth going back in and explaining your situation again or asking online.

My next problem is that I was prescribed an inhaler for hayfever 3 years ago which looks like it' going to **** my application , but that's a different story! :evil:
Thanks for your message chap - hope the inhaler thing goes okay!

Yeah I'm thinking of going in and having a proper chat - the guy seemed keen to get me out of the ACO straight away and I didn't really have a chance to explain myself. Obviously I don't want to give up the house until I'm well on the way through the application process (I don't want to live with my dad for to long - I'd kill him) but once I do so then that means no gas, food, electric, rent or anything like that and I'm basically loaded!

It'd be interesting to see what some of the guys actually serving say! Preferably someone that works in Derby AFCO? :D
The Armed Forces tend not to offer applications to those who have significant financial commitments (to do with personal integrity) - but from what your saying it doesn't seem your financial commitments are significant, you could always call the AFCO back and ask to speak to the Office Manager and expand further or go to an alternative ACIO ;)
Wow i made no sense of that ( no fault of your own ) In the most sober mode i can think of i was told no matter what kind of debts you have you cant get in until they are cleared even if you have a steady, reliable way of paying them back but until then you are a liability to the forces.
Thanks for your answers folks - even if they were typed at 2.33am on a Saturday night and therefore probably not done under the most sober of conditions!

I went on the online chat thing on armyjobs and spoke to one of the guys there. It seems that its up to the recruiter at the ACO to judge.

Ah well - I've got time on my hands so I suppose i could work and pay this off and try in a year or to. See if the TA has the sime reuirments as then I could earn extra money and prepare myself for joining the regulars. We shall see...

Thanks again.
There is set criterias in Recruiting Instructions set out the debt that the Recruiter would be concerned about and you are around that higher margin. However if you can write all your commitments down and go back in and explain on paper that all you really need to pay out is the £200 a month they may assess it again. If you can prove the mobile phone isnt a problem, you have no other contracts they may let it go. Remember though that when you get into basic you wont be getting your full wage for the first few months and only get around £50 a week so you would struggle with those payments aswell.
Hi mate,
I was in the same situation as yourself, paying out £260 per month in loan repayments. I was also told it needed to be under £250 per month but realistically needed to be more around the £150 mark. The way I got around it was to borrow some of the money off a family member so that if worst came to the worst whilst on basic I could misss a few months repayments. Obviously dependent on having a family member with a bit of spare cash.
Hope this helps.
So basically.. It comes down to how much debt your in and how much your paying off a month that decides as to whether you get in or not?
robbiedont said:
I will be applying for bankruptcy in the very near future, how might this effect my application?

Am I required to disclose this?
Yes you are required to disclose it but really need to speak to a current Recruiting Sergeant in the ACIO who will be able to give you the up to date Recruiting Instructions on your case.
Well when i went to ADSC on my final interview i was asked do i have any debt i said yes due to my car finance plan. They just said how much i just said was 7-8 grand its now down to around 3 grand. Told them how my monthly payments were that was it. They didn't ask about phone contracts or insurance etc.. with it all add up my outgoings are around £250+.

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