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Southern states top credit card debt list

In today's economic climate, money troubles affect everyone in multiple ways. Though lost wages and foreclosed homes have dominated headlines for years, credit card debt is and remains a financial issue for many Americans. A recent report showed just how bad credit card debt and credit card delinquency is in some states.

Mississippi topped the list with a credit card delinquency rate of 1.41 percent, with Alabama following closely behind with a rate of 1.16 percent. A third southern state round out the top three with Georgia clocking in with a delinquency rate of 1.12 percent. On the opposite end of the spectrum, North Dakota residents have the lowest delinquency rate, followed by Montana, Minnesota and Utah. Nationwide, the average delinquency rate was 0.85 percent.

Though tough economic times may cause people to reach for their credit cards more often than they normally would, having a plan of what to do and not to do with one's credit card can prevent debts from mounting. Experts provide simple tips to avoid such financial troubles, including:

  • Don't charge what you can't afford
  • Don't take cash advances
  • Don't charge food purchases
  • Don't purchase special services, such as credit card fraud protection and life insurance

On the other side of things, creating a budget, only using the card for emergencies and paying the full balance each month are ways to stay out f credit card problem. If one does fall into trouble, retaining an experienced attorney can provide some much needed legal and financial assistance. Relief does exist, but it pays to be proactive in such matters.

Hopefully reports like that mentioned above could provide a wake-up call and guidance to those teetering on delinquency to get a plan and get themselves out of credit card trouble.

Source: E-Wisdom.com, "Mississippi residents have highest credit card delinquency rate," March 12, 2013 

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