People in Florida and around the nation often struggle to balance their many financial responsibilities. Recent information released by the Census Bureau indicates that the group most in need of debt relief is adults between the ages of 35 and 44, who have a higher debt load than any other age group, averaging just over $100,000 in debt.
There are several factors that contribute to the mid-30s debt load. This is a time in many people’s lives when they are taking on new debts to pay for things like homes and cars while still being saddled with payments for old debts like student loans or college credit cards. And even though many people begin to earn more money in their thirties, this is also a time of rapidly growing expenses as children are born and more costs are incurred to maintain homes and vehicles. These simultaneous economic pressures lead some to make ends meet by relying on debt.
While it may not be possible to eliminate debt completely in most cases, it is important to manage debt wisely. Pay attention to when payments are due and what the credit limits are to avoid unnecessary late fees and a lowered credit rating. Try to pay off your credit cards as soon as possible, since they carry higher interest rates and fees. It is also important to take advantage of any tax breaks available for debts like mortgages or student loans.
Individuals who are feeling overwhelmed by their debt load may need professional help to put their financial house in order. Attorneys working in the area of bankruptcy law help their clients to review their legal options and create a plan of action.
Source: Daily Finance, “4 Tips to Help 30-Somethings Manage Their Debt”, Dan Caplinger, August 13, 2013