Lefkovitz & Lefkovitz
Nashville Office 615-686-2279 Cookeville Office 931-400-2218
Serving all of Middle Tennessee's Bankruptcy Needs

Strategies for seniors struggling with burdensome debt

Financial troubles strike people in Tennessee at all stages of life. Seniors represent a growing group of debtors overwhelmed by too many bills and insufficient retirement savings or benefits. Rising health care costs increase the pressure on older people as well. A report from the Employee Benefit Research Institute indicates that households headed by someone 75 or older have an average debt of $36,757 as of 2016 compared to $30,288 in 2010. Some debtors might salvage their positions by analyzing their budgets, adjusting their lifestyles and reaching out to creditors.

In the early stages of financial stress, people might tackle their problems by scrutinizing their budgets. Savings might accrue by cutting out restaurant dates and credit card purchases. Other lifestyle adjustments could include selling a home as long as it has equity and moving to a place with a lower cost of living. For some people, getting a part-time job or renting out a room could increase income and enable the maintenance of debt payments.

When a mortgage or credit card bills become a strain, people should take action as soon as possible. Ideally, they will make at least the minimum payment on credit card balances to avoid late fees and accounts going into collections. People can contact their mortgage lenders and potentially work out a solution. Hospitals might also be responsive to requests to forgive portions of debt.

In some situations, a person might want to explore eligibility for bankruptcy protection. An attorney could inform the person about the potential of managing debts through Chapter 13 bankruptcy. With legal support, the debtor might end collection efforts and regain control of finances.

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