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Necessary spending tops reasons for credit card debt

Florida credit card holders may be interested in the results of a recent study that challenges the notion that reckless spending is the main reason Americans wind up in debt. According to a survey conducted by CompareCards by Lending Tree, necessary spending to make ends meet is the main reason that people wind up over their heads in credit card debt.

The survey asked 1,000 Americans with credit card debt what contributed the most to their credit card usage. “Making ends meet” was the most common reason given at 42 percent. Car repairs came in as the second most common response, followed closely by medical bills.

These top-ranking expenses fall under the category of needs rather than wants. Wants or frivolous spending made the list too, with eating out and clothes shopping being named by 22 percent of the survey participants. People under the age of 35 were more likely to name these more frivolous purchases as being responsible for their credit card debt.

Younger consumers also appear to be more stressed out by being in debt. Among Millennials, 86 percent said they were stressed by being in debt, compared to only 76 percent of people over 35.

Cutting down on non-essentials like dining out can be a good first step toward reducing overall debt. For many people, however, essential spending on household needs or medical care can lead to debt too. Someone who has a steady income but still cannot keep up with their credit card or medical bills could file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy. An lawyer could help a debtor throughout the filing process.

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