New research shows that elderly Americans are more likely to have experienced a growth in their debt over the recent years. Most of the time these unpaid for expenses are the result of unexpected medical costs.
The Employee Benefit Research Institute recently released a new analysis of government information and found that between 2007 and 2010 many seniors saw their debt increase and were more likely to have acquired debt during that time.
For those aged 75 and older, almost 39% of them had debt in 2010, up from just over 31% in 2007. Additionally, individual debt amounts doubled from a 2007 level of just under $13,700, to 2010 level of just over $27,400.
During that same time people between 55 and 64 saw a decrease in debt, from about 82% to about 78%. People between the ages of 65 and 74 had a steady chance to have debt at about 65%.
Additionally, the average amount of debts for people between the ages of 55 and 64 fell from 2007 levels of about $112,000 to the 2010 level of about $107,000. Similarly, debt for those between the ages of 65 and 74 fell from about $73,000 to about $71,000.
Researchers also noted that younger Americans seem to be taking on much more debt than previous generations, and also appear to be paying it off much more slowly. This means that as younger people get older they may have far larger debt loads than their parents and grandparents.