If your credit card companies demanded full repayment of your current debt load tomorrow, would you have enough money in your savings to cover the balance? According to a new Bankrate.com survey, the number of Americans who could eliminate their credit card debt tomorrow using only funds from their savings accounts currently stands at 51 percent. This means that nearly half of all Americans have more credit card debt alone than savings.
This might not seem like astonishing news. But this trend becomes increasingly disturbing when you consider that credit card debt is not the only consumer debt that most Americans possess. The average adult in the U.S. likely has some combination of credit card debt, mortgage debt, auto loans and other consumer debt that will all come due at some point. And consumer debt loads do not even factor in debts like medical bills which can be overwhelming.
The Bankrate.com survey suggests that many, many Americans may be struggling with debt that is set to spiral out of control should their circumstances shift even slightly. It is important to be proactive about this kind of debt. If your debt is mounting, it may be a healthy decision for you to speak with an attorney experienced in matters of bankruptcy and other forms of debt relief. Addressing your mounting debt before it becomes a tsunami may help you to protect your family’s financial future in ways that you likely could not if you wait until you have passed your breaking point.
Source: CBS News, "Close to half of Americans have more credit card debt than savings," Constantine Von Hoffman, Feb. 18, 2014