More Retire With Mortgages, Card Debt

June 5, 2013
MarketWatch 
mortgage lending news

Senior Americans, burdened with more debt than ever, are being forced to borrow to cover living expenses once they retire, the Federal Reserve's Survey of Consumer Finances reveals. Based on responses, 54 percent of pre-retirees and 41 percent of retirees aged 65-74 in 2010 were still carrying a mortgage: a median of $97,000 for the former and $70,000 for the latter. The high level of housing debts going into retirement are the byproduct of the property boom, when borrowers used their homes as ATM machines. U.S. seniors are entering their golden years bogged down in credit card bills, as well. The Fed poll showed that about 41 percent of pre-retirees and 32 percent of new retirees had outstanding credit card debt and installment loans, with median balances of about $2,200 and $11,000, respectively. And while deleveraging has emerged as a post-crisis trend, most of that behavior occurred among younger households than older ones.
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