Much of the discussion on our Miami bankruptcy law blog has focused on the financial struggles of those who own a home in Florida. After home values tanked across the nation, Florida homeowners discovered that they were hit especially hard in the foreclosure and real estate crisis. The number of individuals struggling with debt and financial worries has increased as a result, and more Floridians have chosen to file bankruptcy in order to reorganize debt and better manage their finances.
Although many have turned to bankruptcy in order to prevent their homes from going into foreclosure, many others have chosen to file bankruptcy in order to stop creditor harassment and to get their credit card debt under control. According to a study conducted by Equifax, one of the main credit bureaus in the U.S., the amount in credit card debt for some households accounts for 17 percent of their income. Experian, another major credit bureau, reported that the average consumer owes more than $4,200 in credit card debt.
Unfortunately, many Floridians owe more in credit card debt compared to the national average. According to recently published statistics, Jacksonville, Florida, ranks number two for one of the cities with the highest amount of credit card debt. The average consumer in Jacksonville owes more than $5,100 in credit card debt. Residents in Jacksonville also have credit scores that are lower than the national average.
Jacksonville may rank number two for one of the cities with the highest consumer credit card debt averages, but several other Florida cities rank in the study’s list of the top 25 cities with high consumer credit card debt. Tallahassee, Miami and Orlando all rank in the top 25 list.
Florida residents struggling with credit card debt may also be struggling with creditor harassment. As a result, many individuals choose to file for bankruptcy protection in order to put an end to collection calls and to begin a fresh start with their finances.
msnbc: “5 U.S. cities with the most credit card debt,” Rachel Brown, 25 Apr. 2011