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New poll finds that most Americans carry debt

Anyone with a credit card knows how easy it is to just charge it and carry balance on the card. Most of us need only look at our January credit card bill to see the damage done while shopping for holiday gifts. Unfortunately, that generosity or obligation can be a slippery slope that leaves many feeling that there is no end in sight.

This feeling is once again confirmed by the web site www.creditcards.com. The site has a new survey that found that over 41 percent of adults in the U.S. have debt and do not know how or when they will be able to pay off the debt. Another 25 percent have debt and believe they will carry the debt to their grave. That is nearly 66 percent of U.S. adults who have crippling debt.

Some debts are better than others

To be fair, this poll includes certain factors that many take for granted. Here are the most common forms for debt accumulation by adults in the U.S.:

  1. Mortgages: 54 percent of Americans pay a mortgage, which is not necessarily a bad debt to carry as long as it is an affordable part of the budget.
  2. Credit cards: 53 percent carry a high interest balance, which is where many get into trouble.
  3. Motor vehicle loan: 47 percent carry a car loan, which is another necessary loan at a reasonable rate, but again it needs to fit with the budget of the lendee.
  4. Student loans: 21 percent have student loans.
  5. Medical debt: 13 percent have been thrown into debt by major medical expenses.

Finding a solution

Common solutions proposed by those in the survey included:

  • Paying more to bring down the balance
  • Transfer the debt to a card with a lower interest rate or no interest window
  • Get a better paying job

Getting help from a bankruptcy professional

The above solutions all seem reasonable and can work. However, many find themselves in a debt spiral as the interest rates add up or unforeseen circumstances throw finances into chaos.

Bankruptcy attorneys work with clients to find real and lasting solutions. Chapter 7 and Chapter 11 are designed by the federal government to protect individuals and help them get back on their financial feet. No one dreams of carrying debt until the day they die. Working with an experienced bankruptcy attorney can help ensure that it does not happen.

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William T. Peckham
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Austin, TX 78701
Phone: 512-487-7604
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