According to TransUnion (TRU), Americans are juggling average credit balances of $5,947 — a near 20% increase year-over-year, reaching levels not seen in a decade. Last quarter, the nation’s total credit card debt hit the alarming milestone of $1 trillion, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
Roughly 54 million of Americans carrying a balance have remained in credit card debt for over a year. And with swiping showing no signs of slowing, experts are gearing up for even more financial speed bumps down the road.
As the number of credit cards in circulation grows, so has something more alarming: delinquencies. TransUnion’s metrics spotlight a spike in the number of delinquencies, or payments delayed by 90 days or more, as a sign of concern. In response, some lenders have already started to restrict credit to less-experienced users.
Swipe, Struggle, Repeat
In times of elevated inflation and pinched pockets, it’s easy to feel defeated by rising credit card balances. Fortunately, for those struggling with credit card debt, solutions exist.
In addition to proactive repayments and smart payoff plans — such as the snowball and avalanche method — key strategies include budgeting using the 50/30/20 rule, paying above the minimum balance, and utilizing tools such as a credit card interest calculator. Debt consolidation into personal loans with fixed rates may offer another potential solution.
For an in-depth breakdown of these strategies and more, check out these tips to reduce credit debt.
A SoFi personal loan for debt consolidation could substantially lower how much you pay each month. Consider whether it’s the right option for you.
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