Americans Feeling More Optimistic About Debt

Tuesday, January 31st, 2017
Updated: January 31st, 2017
The content is accurate at the time of publication and is subject to change.

Fewer adults expect to go to their graves owing money to their credit card issuers than they did a year ago, according to a new survey.

This may seem like a morbid statistic, but the fact is, many people will, in fact, never get out of debt. Last year, 21% of those surveyed felt that they would be among those folks who die with credit card debt. But this year, only 12% think they’ll never crawl out of the black hole of credit card debt.

The increase in optimism when it comes to debt held true across all age groups. Predictably, older people were more likely to be pessimistic about their chances of paying off their debts; 28% of people ages 65 and older never expect to make that last credit card payment and bring their balance to zero. But last year, it was 35%. Fourteen percent of 50-64 year olds didn’t think they’d get out of debt before the Grim Reaper calls, down from 24% last year, and 11% of those ages 30 to 39 felt they’d die in debt – down from 19% last year. Young folks, who naturally expect to have a few more years ahead of them to get out of debt, were the most optimistic. Only 4% of them thought they’d kick the bucket still owing on their credit cards. Last year, it was 11%.

Staying out of debt is the best bet for dying debt-free

Of course, not everyone is in debt in the first place. Twenty-four percent of Americans said they aren’t in debt at all. That’s the highest number of debt-free folks in three years of this particular survey.

Credit card debt isn’t the only type of debt the study looks at: it also includes student loans, mortgages, and car loans. Some of these, such as mortgages, are considered “good debt” and may have terms of as long as 30 years, or longer if folks have refinanced.

If their debts magically disappeared tomorrow, 72% of people surveyed said they’d put the extra money toward savings – retirement, an emergency fund, a college fund, or a down payment on a house. Only 6% said they’d go wild and spend the extra funds.

All rates and fees, and other terms and conditions of the products mentioned in this article/post are actual as of the last update date but are subject to change. See the current products' Terms & Conditions on the issuing banks' websites.

Latest Bad Credit Card News

Friday, June 28th, 2019

The third quarter is just around the corner. And Amalgamated Bank of Chicago is ready with an attractive forthcoming rewards category that will appeal to all travel lovers. It will be recalled that ABOC credit cards come with 1x ABOC Bonus Rewards Points on all purchases. But their no annual fee Platinum Rewards Mastercard® and […]

Sunday, March 3rd, 2019

Bad credit history sounds like a sentence for many people. But is it so? Let’s consider the issue of bad credit in more detail. Our life is unpredictable, and we never know what can happen. We are not insured against anything. However, it is important to remember that there is always a way out or […]

Friday, October 12th, 2018

It’s the American dream—but it can turn into a nightmare for your credit score if you’re not careful. Financial experts at Take Charge America warn that buying a home when you’re not truly prepared for the responsibility you’re taking on can lead to financial stress and a lowered credit score.

Thursday, May 24th, 2018

Having poor – or nonexistent – credit history can be a big problem when you apply for a loan, an apartment, a credit card, or even a job. Because many people struggle with this issue, the government is stepping in to offer advice on building, improving, and protecting credit history.

Wednesday, January 17th, 2018

At the beginning of the year, many people make resolutions about getting in shape. Starting diets, doing yoga, and going to the gym are the prevailing trends as a new year begins. However, this year those resolutions have been edged out in popularity by a different goal: getting finances in shape.

Best Credit Offer
First Access Visa® Solid Black Credit Card
Check off the cards you want to compare. Then click the Compare link to go to the comparison table.
Consumer Rating: 4 / 5
Horizon Card Services Horizon Gold Credit Card
Copyright © 2001-2019 All Rights Reserved.

*See the credit card's terms and conditions on the online application page. Note that this website may be compensated by credit card issuers when the visitor applies for a card through the links on this website. We do our best to maintain all information accurate and up to date. However, we do not warrant the credit card information won't change. Click the "Apply Online" button and review the current info on the secure credit card terms page.

Information in these articles is brought to you by Banks, issuers, and credit card companies mentioned in the articles do not endorse or guarantee, and are not responsible for, the contents of the articles.

The webpage is a free service and an information resource for credit cards and financial products and services available to eligible United States consumers. does not offer any warranties and is not a direct service. There are no guarantees for approval or offers when applying for a credit card. Please refer to the application if you would like more information on each credit card. When you click "Apply" for a particular credit card, please take the time to review the terms and conditions of the product/service at the issuer's website. All logos on the website are property of their respective owners.

Disclaimer: This editorial content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuer. Opinions expressed here are the author's alone, not those of the credit card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. Reasonable efforts are made to present accurate info, however all info is presented without warranty. Consult a card's issuing bank for terms & conditions. makes every effort to keep information up to date and accurate. However, the information regularly changes and is presented without warranty. Therefore, we strongly recommend all our readers to visit the credit card application page by clicking "Apply Online!" button to review the detailed credit card's terms and conditions. Note that may be compensated by the credit card issuers when the readers apply for a credit card through this site. is an independent, advertising-supported website which receives compensation from the credit card issuers and companies whose offers appear on the site. Compensation may impact how and where products appear on our site, including, for example, the order in which they may appear on the site pages. does not review or list all available financial or credit offers.

Disclosure: Not an access card.

You've successfully subscribed!

Please specify the following:All these fields are optional

Thank you for providing this information! We will make sure our letters are useful for You.

User Generated Content Disclaimer: These responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.