In mid-2017, NerdWallet reported that Americans held $12.96 trillion of total household debt. For those Americans who did carry debt, the average household had $131,431.00 (including mortgages). Of those holding credit card debt, the average household carried a balance of $15,654.00, an increase of 8% since 2016. To put it in meaningful terms, those Americans who possessed credit card debt paid over $904.00 in INTEREST annually.
That’s real money…a vacation, a mortgage payment, a couple months worth of groceries for a family of four. How does this happen? When polled, the number one reason debt holders reported as the reason they hold so much debt is that they spent more money than they could afford on unnecessary purchases. This applied to a full 41% of respondents! Make a resolution to get your credit card debt under control in 2018. If it’s too much temptation, cut up your credit cards and stick to your debit card. Never just make minimum payments. Be sure to pay the highest interest-rate cards off first. Cut back on your discretionary purchases and knock off one card balance at a time. If you need to be held accountable, contact your financial advisor for help or reach out to a close friend for support.