Florida consumers swiped their credit cards more than almost everyone else in the nation over the year's second quarter. While experts caution that this is not necessarily a sign of incoming disaster, it could spell trouble for some people. Consumers who have considerable amounts of credit card debt may also be struggling to handle finances in other areas of their lives, and the high interest rates associated with credit cards could make things worse.
Owning a home can be a stressful but rewarding experience -- from tackling those first home repairs to arguing with one's spouse over paint colors, there is truly nothing else like it. For those who encounter brief financial problems that make paying the mortgage difficult, those experiences could all disappear with foreclosure. It is important for Florida homeowners to understand that there are options for avoiding home foreclosure.
Sending a child off to college is often seen as an important step in life, and most Florida parents feel proud that they are helping their children further their educations. While a college education is often essential for a good job, it can also have a downside. Families with children in college may be more vulnerable to home foreclosure during difficult economic times.
Older Americans are currently filing for bankruptcy at astonishing rates. This generation's need for debt relief can be boiled down to a several contributing factors, including higher retirement and health care costs. However, waiting to file for bankruptcy is usually not a good idea, and for some older Florida residents, the process might not be quite as effective as it is for their younger counterparts.
Not everyone who decides to file for bankruptcy intends to or is able to do so immediately. If you are in this situation, there may still be a number of expenses that you have to cover. You may wonder if you can continue to use your credit card right up until you file.
There is no denying America's deeply rooted car culture. From visiting the park to grocery shopping to commuting to work, it all takes place behind the wheel. However, a love of vehicles is not enough to keep Florida consumers from experiencing car-related money problems. In fact, automotive issues are among the top causes of consumer financial despair, which may lead some to seek relief through Chapter 13 bankruptcy.
Seeking medical care treatment can be frightening not just because of the potential for further illness or injury, but because of the high cost of care. Federal law requires nonprofit hospitals in Florida to provide indigent care, which provides reduced or even free medical care for patients who otherwise cannot afford treatment. However, some patients who are told they qualify for indigent care soon find out that they still owe exorbitant fees, which leads some to seek debt relief through bankruptcy.
Losing a house to foreclosure is a traumatizing event for homeowners. Some people in Florida are able to modify their loans or utilize certain federally-backed programs to stop home foreclosure. However, it recently came to light that a Wells Fargo mistake caused hundreds of people who qualified for help to be denied, which ultimately cost them their homes.
There is no getting around it -- the cost of health care is astronomical. Medical costs are completely out of reach for the average Florida resident, and not just for catastrophic events. Generic costs associated with seeking care for minor illnesses and injuries is enough to push people into debt, and one group of people seems to be affected more than others -- millennials. This could potentially lead to more young adults seeking debt relief through bankruptcy.
Credit card interest rates have been going up over recent years, which has contributed to the growing balances carried by most Americans. Higher interest rates make it much more difficult to pay off existing credit card debt, and many people in Florida may see their balances rise despite making regular payments. This is extremely problematic for consumers who are struggling to pull themselves out of debt.
Most borrowers know that they cannot discharge their student loans during bankruptcy. While this is generally true, relief through a federal program is an option for some people in Florida. Unfortunately, the guidelines for this program are currently under review, and projected changes could impact how some borrowers seek debt relief in the future.