According to the latest figures from the Bank of England, average rates on all major forms of unsecured household borrowing continue to rise.

Digital lending marketplace Freedom Finance crunched the numbers to find that consumer credit rose again in September, continuing an upward trend in the cost of borrowing that has persisted all year.

Household budgets are already facing a sharp squeeze as inflationary pressures and soaring energy bills take hold, while rising mortgage rates could put many homeowners under pressure.

Freedom Finance found that average credit card rates jumped another 0.08 percentage points in September to 21.88% – the highest average monthly rate since December 1998 (22.19%).

Read more: Credit unions see an increase in the number of consumer borrowers

The average quoted rate for a £10,000 personal loan rose for a seventh consecutive month, rising another 0.09 percentage point to 4.43% at the end of September. It is now at its highest level for seven years and at a level not exceeded since December 2015 (4.45%).

The average rate for a £5,000 personal loan hit 8.39% in September and is at its highest level since March 2017 (9.54%).

Overdraft rates are also at an all-time high, rising 0.01 percentage point to 35.30% in September; rates skyrocketed in April 2020 when new regulations were introduced, but have been steadily rising to new highs even since then.

Read more: New consumer loans rose 14% in August

“Consumers cannot control the upward trajectory of the cost of consumer credit, but they should ensure that they take all the steps available to them to obtain the best and most appropriate products for their situation,” said said Emma Steeley, chief executive of Freedom Finance. .

“Digital marketplaces are a great way to shop because they automate the process through a single app, and because they use software-based search technology, consumers will only be offered loans or credit cards they definitely qualify for.

“The lending industry can play a positive role in helping people manage their money during this difficult time, using its data assets to deliver the most appropriate offer to customers.”

Read more: Freedom Finance appoints Emma Steeley as Managing Director