Many people in Texas may feel like the days of the Great Recession are long gone, and they may be right. After all, it sounds like the economy is humming along. Unemployment is down, wages are up slightly and consumers appear to be generally optimistic. Despite that perception, however, many individuals, are still struggling to get by.
In fact, a recent study found that consumer debt continues to rise to historic levels. According to reports, this debt level has risen to $13.7 trillion, spurred on by $10 trillion in mortgage debt and $1.5 trillion in student loan debt. Other personal debts contribute to this huge burden, too, including medical debt and credit card debt.
Although debt isn't necessarily a bad thing, it can quickly get out of hand. Sadly, as recent studies found, many Americans are struggling to save up an emergency fund, let alone plan for retirement. This means that they are often living paycheck-to-paycheck and may be one unexpected expense away from financial catastrophe. These individuals may also find themselves on hard financial times if another recession hits.
Those who struggle with this debt can face significant hardship. Creditors may harass them, their homes may be subject to foreclosure and their vehicles may be repossessed. The threat of these possibilities is not only stressful, but it can create a financial ripple effect that can leave an individual uncertain about their future.
The good news is that debt relief may be obtained. One effective way to do so is to pursue personal bankruptcy. Chapter 7 bankruptcy is solid option for those who qualify, as it may allow an individual to shed many of his or her debts. This can be the fresh financial start the debtor needs to have financial security and peace of mind.