There’s a lot of talk in the media about Canadians carrying too much debt. We’re getting hammered with messages of ‘record high personal debt levels’. It’s true. Our mortgage balances are higher, car loans are higher, student loans are higher, personal loans and lines of credit balances are higher.
Is this a problem? Are Canadians in trouble? Is this a reason to panic? Let’s try to answer…
Well, here’s one very interesting stat that might crush that statement once and for all. Canadians, on average, spend 14% of after-tax income on personal debt.
Did I surprise you? I’ll bet most people thought that number would be way higher given all the negative reports in the media. Continue reading “Personal debt level concerns are overblown…!”
Saw this article today about higher consumer debt levels BUT lower defaults. Equifax Canada is quoted as saying that consumer debt rose by 7.2% in the second quarter 2014 to $1.45 trillion ,compared with $1.35 trillion from a year ago. This includes credit cards, loans, lines of credits and mortgages.
The average Canadian now has $20,759 in personal debt, excluding mortgages. That’s a 1.5% increase since last year. So that means mortgage debt has risen by around 7%. Here’s a heads up… you will see and hear articles sounding the panic alarm… again.
Well, before we hit that panic button, there was one more stat that we should pay attention to. DEFAULTS. Defaults are at their lowest level since 2008. If higher consumer debt levels and lower defaults sound strange to you, it shouldn’t. I’ll explain… Continue reading “News stats..Higher debt, but lower defaults”
Ever notice how all economic news is bad? Seriously, when was the last time you heard Canadians were doing well, financially? Even when we came out of the October 2008 U.S. sub-prime mortgage crisis (notice I’m very specific about the cause of that recession) with flying colours, we kept seeing the same negative messages about how lucky we were to come out of this as strong as we did.
But here we are, 5 years later (hard to believe it’s been 5 years) and all we keep hearing and reading is how the economy is fragile… the housing bubble is coming… personal debt levels are at record highs… housing affordability index has increased (this measures how much of your income is used for housing)… This all sounds terrible and depressing.. maybe we should sell everything, move to another country and herd sheep? Continue reading “Rising personal debt levels.. but how about rising asset levels?”
So here we go again.. More stats that show our personal debt levels aren’t out of control… That’s right, I said ‘aren’t’ out of control. Equifax Canada says our defaults are at record low levels and we are paying off our debts faster. This doesn’t come as any surprise to me. Anyone that’s followed my posts knows that I have questioned all the popular articles telling us we are not managing our debts responsibly.
You’ve seen the reports… ‘Personal debts at record high levels’…..’Personal Debt crisis’. We’ve been hammered with the same headlines for the past few years. I just wasn’t seeing this with my readers or my clients… I kept seeing consumers wanting to take advantage of these record low interest rates to invest or improve their homes (why is that a bad thing?). That’s not bad debt in my opinion… that’s good debt.. And now we have some stats to back up what I have experienced. Continue reading “Personal Debt level concerns are overblown according to Equifax stats.”
Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past 4 years, it’s impossible to not know the Federal govt’s concern about Canada’s Personal Debt level. The media has covered this topic extensively. After all, bad news sells more than good news…..
Here’s some current stats from Statistics Canada that really gets my blood boiling!…. We now carry a total debt load equal to around 164% of our annual household income. That’s at an all-time high…. The govt is convinced that we are spending too much or our income towards real estate… They have made numerous changes to mortgage lending rules that make it much tougher to qualify for a mortgage. If there really is a problem, why is the govt focusing on low-interest rate products like mortgages?
Current mortgage rates are at around 3.00%. Current credit card rates range from 9.99% to 19.99%….personal loan and car loan rates range from 6.00% to 9.00% and up. Aren’t low-interest rate products better than high-interest rate products? We have not seen any changes to these non-mortgage debt products…. Who benefits from higher rates? Yup, your banker!… Continue reading “Personal Debt levels and Mortgage Debt levels”