However, whenever I research different financial topics I usually come across some scary money statistics.
The money stats you read in this post might scare you, but hopefully they can help you so that you can improve your finances and be better than the “average” person.
Even if you are doing better than the average person, that definitely does not mean that you are doing well financially either though.
You should always strive to do your best as sometimes “average” is not good enough for you to live a financially successful life.
Below are some scary money statistics that will hopefully whip you into financial shape. Enjoy!
1. 68% live paycheck to paycheck.
According to survey done by CNN, 68% of Americans surveyed live paycheck to paycheck. According to their survey, these households have less than $800 to cover them until their next paycheck.
If you are living paycheck to paycheck, I suggest trying to find a way to get out of this bad situation immediately. Having money set aside and a buffer can greatly help you in times when you need it.
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2. 26% have no emergency savings.
According to a survey by Bankrate, 26% of survey takers had no emergency savings whatsoever and 24% had less than three months worth.
What I was happy to read though was that 23% had 6 months or more in their emergency fund, which is actually a much higher percentage than what I thought it would be.
How much a person needs in their emergency fund can vary greatly, but I tend to think that 6 months of expenses or more is a good number. I like to be comfortable, but that number can vary, especially if you have high interest rate debt that you are trying to pay off or if you have unstable income.
Related article: Everything You Need To Know About Emergency Funds.
3. The median amount saved for retirement is less than $60,000.
According to the Federal Reserve, the average person is not saving for retirement.
The $60,000 amount above only counts people who are actually saving for retirement, and that is for all age groups. $60,000 won't get you far so this is a very alarming statistic.
The median value of retirement accounts for families who are saving for retirement is $12,000 for households with members younger than 35, $42,700 for households with members between the ages of 35 to 44, and it goes slightly up from there, but for households with members older than 75, the amount saved is just $69,500.
Keep in mind that these statistics only count people who have actually saved anything for retirement.
According to US News, 45% of households do not have anything saved for retirement. This means that once you account for these households, the numbers above decrease dramatically.
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4. The average household has $7,283 in credit card debt.
According to NerdWallet, the average household has $7,283 in credit card debt. However, if you only count households that have credit card debt in the first place, that number jumps to $15,611.
Also, consumers in the U.S. have nearly $883 BILLION in credit card debt.
That is a lot of credit card debt. Credit card debt can be due to many different reasons including living paycheck to paycheck, emotional spending, and more.
Related article: How To Eliminate Your Debt.
5. The average student loan debt is $32,264.
Also according to NerdWallet, the average student loan debt is $32,264 and consumers in the U.S. have nearly $1.13 trillion altogether in student loan debt.
Also, according to the Federal Reserve Bank Of New York, $323 billion of student loan debt is held by those who are 40 years old and older. That is nearly a third of student loan debt.
This is a ton of money. I had almost $40,000 in student loan debt when I graduated and I still believe that a lot of that had to do with me thinking that this was “average” and that if everyone else had the same amount of student loan debt as me that it wasn't that big of a deal.
Boy, was I wrong. When I received my first student loan bill after I graduated, I knew I wanted to pay off my debt quickly because having such a huge amount lingering over my head gave me a headache.
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Did anything in this post surprise you? How do you compare?
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