Last week's post reported that more people nationwide, including those in the vicinity of Livonia and throughout the Detroit metro area, are incurring additional consumer debt, particular with respect to car loans and student loans. While applying for bankruptcy might not be able to give any direct relief for a student loan obligation, last week's post also suggested that the balance on some car loans may be able to be reduced.
Many residents of the Detroit metro area might have some vague idea that filing for bankruptcy wipes out debt in exchange for a person's having to go through a court proceeding and then live with sub-optimal credit for a few years. Michiganders might not know, however, which debts get discharged in bankruptcy, and, on a related point, whether a discharge will really improve a person's financial condition.
Over the last several months, residents of Detroit and the surrounding suburbs of the great Michigan city have bucked the national trend of racking up more debt. While other cities have seen an increase in consumer debt of up over 6 percent, Detroit residents on the whole remained relatively conservative spenders, actually decreasing their overall average consumer debt ever so slightly, by .7 percent.
A recent report has suggested that older Michigan residents may be target of aggressive, and possibly unlawful, debt collection techniques. According to the report, senior citizens both in this state and other parts of the country may be getting harassed about their debt, debt that sometimes, they don't even owe.
Residents of the Detroit area and other Michiganders who read this blog regularly probably know that several recent posts have discussed how families in financial distress can try to dig out of debt, with some careful financial planning. Other couples, however, may be trying to be more proactive and pay down credit cards and other debts, while they seem to be financially healthy. Doing this also calls for some strategic thinking.
Last week's post discussed how Michigan families who are facing financial difficulties have the option of either filing a Chapter 13 bankruptcy or a more traditional Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Both have their own advantages and disadvantages, and both can successfully afford a family the debt relief that it desperately needs.
Michigan families who are facing insurmountable debt and are looking for debt relief have probably heard that there may be different types of bankruptcy available to them. These people may also feel a little confused about the differences between the types of bankruptcy filings, and which might work best for their financial situation.
Many Michigan residents who find themselves in the office of a bankruptcy attorney may be in a state of shock, wondering how they wound up in their financial situation. For some, it may seem as if overnight a few missed bills here and there turned into insurmountable debt that requires some legal help in order to resolve.
Michigan residents who have been following reports that the economy is recovering may have heard that, at least to some extent, people who have lived through the recent economic recession are now being more conservative when deciding whether or not to take on debt. However, one expert has suggested that living a "debt-free" lifestyle may be the luxury of only a handful of Michigan residents and other Americans who have the income or the assets to be able to do so. Those who do have the money to use cash only to live are, indeed, being more careful when taking on debt. For example, instead of buying that second home, they may instead use lower mortgage rates as an opportunity to refinance and pay off their existing home more quickly.