Bankruptcy Can Help Americans Lower Debt Stress While Economy Recovers
Despite news that the economy is recovering, Atlanta residents and the rest of the country are still stressed out.
What's the reason? More than 46 percent of people surveyed by the Associated Press said that debt was a major source of stress in their lives. Even though we're scrimping and saving, it doesn't seem to be enough to erase the massive debt burdens many of us racked up in the years before - and during - the recent recession, say Atlanta bankruptcy attorneys.
But there's a bright side. We don't have to wait for economic recovery to ease debt worries - not when we have the option of bankruptcy.
Though many of us have been unable to banish debt, it's not for lack of trying. Americans lowered their average credit card balances from $5,600 last fall to $3,900 today, according to the same poll. Problem is, lowering debt is an uphill battle against other financial forces.
Take the job market. Unemployment is still hovering around 10 percent, and even those of us with steady jobs have seen cuts in hours and pay. As paychecks get smaller, so do our home values - making our mortgages feel even larger.
Sure, it's possible that the economy - and our incomes - will bounce back enough that we can pay our debts once and for all. But what's to say that, even when we have more money, it won't get sucked up by the mortgage, our regular payments and our everyday expenses - leaving nothing leftover to pay down that nagging debt?
There will always be another bill to pay. So why wait until tomorrow when you can ease your mind and your financial burden by paying off debt today? When you eliminate debt, you eliminate not just those future payments and interest but also worries over late payments, harassing creditors and the risk of foreclosure. Less stress will make it easier to get through these tough economic times - and give you a head start as the economy picks up steam.