Most Americans say they will never be debt free

by Steve Randall16 Jan 2018
Being debt free in retirement is unlikely to be experienced by most Americans, if their own predictions are accurate.

More than two thirds (68%) of respondents to a survey by creditcards.com say they are not confident that they will ever pay down all of their debts with 30% saying they will never achieve debt freedom and 38% unsure of when or if they will. Almost a third are confident of clearing their debts within 9 years.

The poll also reveals that mortgages (53%) and HELOCs (30%) are viewed as good debt by 53% and 30% respectively; and seen as bad debt by just 13% and 24% respectively.

Credit cards are the biggest issue for most respondents, and this debt is the second most unfavorable (59%) behind payday loans (67%). Auto debt ranks as good debt with 32% and bad debt with 23%, higher than student loans (23% good, 45% bad).

Not all bad news

The survey shows that 27% of Americans have no debt and 50% of respondents said they feel more comfortable with their debt levels now than they did a year ago. Just 8% said they were less comfortable.

Just 13% said they would be comfortable taking on more debt in 2018 while 45% said they would not.

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