Credit card debt in America is back to levels prior to the recession. The average credit card APR is just under 16% according to CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Report. Homeowners have an advantage over renters when it comes to getting their arms around debt issues.
Basic money management suggests that higher rate debt be replaced with lower rate debt. Credit cards, personal cars, boats, motor vehicles and other personal property, typically have interest rates higher than that of real estate loans.
In case you thought your credit card debt was forgiven when you die in Mississippi, it’s not. Your estate still owes it.
Though residents of Southern states carry less credit-card debt, they rank high in accounts that are 30 days past due. The national average is 1.47% of the population.
Mississippi leads the nation with 2.35%, followed by Louisiana and Arkansas.
At the low end are Hawaii (1.12%) and Alaska (1.17%). That despite Hawaii and Alaska being among the most expensive places to live.
Borrowing against a person’s home usually provides the lowest rate of financing. Refinancing a home mortgage to take cash out to retire personal debt is one option. Another would be to secure a home equity or HELOC, home equity line of credit.
An alternative advantage of borrowing against one’s home in Hattiesburg is that the interest may be tax deductible unlike the interest on most personal debt. Qualified mortgage interest includes acquisition debt which can only be used to buy, build or improve a principal residence and up to $100,000 of home equity debt which can be used for any purpose.
Managing money is a critical life skill that people need to master. While the goal may be to become debt-free, paying the least amount of interest possible can be a good first step. Owning a home provides an asset that allows for options not available to tenants. Seek professional advice to determine your best course of action.