America In Debt – Broken Down Per Person

Happy Friday fellow Debt Wranglers. As the week has gone by, I have been becoming more and more frustrated with what is going on around me. I have been trying to figure out how to create a better life for myself and my family, but notice that many others are just digging back into their old and crappy habits. I mean, what the hell has to happen before people actually make a change? Really, people?

My blogging buddy, John, from Frugal Rules put together a nice piece on Wednesday describing the definition of insanity. He was ranting about how crazy it is when we all took heed when the economy fell into the toilet, but as we start to move toward the light of recovery, people start spending money they don’t have. He mentioned my post with another interesting infographic regarding our falling savings rate.  What is wrong with everyone? Why do we not learn from our mistakes? I am asking questions because I just don’t get it. When did common sense fall apart and now we rely on companies to dictate how we live our lives? Can someone explain it to me?

To go on point with the crazy debt that America has, I decided to post an infographic that breaks down America’s debt. I puts in the perspective of how much the average American has. It is quite eye opening. The funny thing is that the infographic was created by a loan company. Don’t even get me started on how backwards that is, but I liked the infographic. I can’t explain why a loan company, who thrives on people not being able to pay for things, would create an information product about Debt. Can anyone explain this one to me as well?

I apologize for the questions today. I am slowly losing patience for our society. I used to be a part of the bad spending club, but at least I learned from my mistake. I don’t want to be a part of these statistics anymore. I want to be free from the cold embrace of debt. Who’s with me?


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Grayson Bell

Grayson Bell

I'm a business owner, blogger, father, and husband. I used credit cards too much and found myself in over $75,000 in debt ($50,000 in just credit cards). I paid it off, started this blog, and my financial life has changed. I now talk about fighting debt and growing wealth here. I run a WordPress maintenance and support company, along with another blog. It is Empowered Shopper, which helps people get information about products they want to buy. You can also check out Eyes on the Dollar, which is a great blog that I co-own.


  1. March 15, 2013 at 6:41 am — Reply

    Your national debt is terrifying. Your government has so much debt and you haven’t even included the state and municipal debt in the totals. How does a giant country stop adding debt and start working towards a balanced budget? Is it too late?

    I do worry about your debt level because everything your country does has a serious impact on the Canadian economy

    • March 15, 2013 at 10:37 am — Reply

      I completely agree with you Jane. Our debt is so scary and no one knows how to deal with it. They just continue to spend and go crazy. There are many states that are actually doing well with their debt, but as a whole, it is terrible.

    • March 19, 2013 at 10:23 am — Reply

      Here is an excellent example of what we are facing with our national debt. Anyone will understand the message.

      • March 19, 2013 at 10:43 am — Reply

        Never saw that video before, but I love it. It made me laugh and cry at the same time because it is the truth.

  2. March 15, 2013 at 7:32 am — Reply

    Thanks for the mention Grayson, though I wish it was under different circumstances. 😉 The numbers aren’t new, but it still stings to see them in this infographic. I did a post in my first few months and included a link to the national debt clock and the amount of debt we have per person is just absolutely staggering, especially considering that a lot of it is out of our hands wit government spending. That said, so much of it is our fault as a nation that just continues to spend ourselves into oblivion.

    My wife and I were listening to a show on NPR the other day and it said that there were two types of loans that are just going crazy nuts right now…student loans and car loans. Now, student loans I understand can be debatable…but car loans? Really? What on earth are we thinking? I could go on about this, but I’d rather not write a post in your comments. 🙂

    • March 15, 2013 at 10:38 am — Reply

      You are welcome John. The numbers are not new, they came out in the fall of last year, but they still prove a point. We are spending way more money than we should be and our society is all about debt. We have a lot of work to do to get turned around, but I don’t know if we will ever get there. I appreciated your mini rant.

  3. March 15, 2013 at 12:37 pm — Reply

    Debt is so ugly. I’m a statistic with my ginormous mortgage and student loans hanging around, but I am so excited to start killing them quicker. I have only let me credit card revolve once, and that was enough for me. Plus I think vehicle loans are stupid. It’s really annoying when society as a whole has lost their short-term memory, but I think that is nothing new. The frustrating part will be when the new bubble bursts and people claim ignorance.

    • March 15, 2013 at 3:35 pm — Reply

      You are so correct Jake. We all seem to forget what happened, except those that are still struggling because of it.

  4. March 15, 2013 at 1:30 pm — Reply

    It’s funny how quickly the past gets forgotten, you’ve got me wound up now Grayson! 🙂

    • March 15, 2013 at 3:35 pm — Reply

      Haha, Happy Friday Adam! I got wound up writing it.

  5. Girl Meets Debt
    March 15, 2013 at 2:05 pm — Reply

    I like pretty graphs. Not too sure I like the info on that graph though! It makes me sad that I am a statistic but I’m hoping to change that sooner than later…

    • March 15, 2013 at 3:36 pm — Reply

      Good goal to have. I was a big part of that statistic and now I am a much smaller part. It feels good, but I still have a lot of work to do.

  6. March 16, 2013 at 10:28 am — Reply

    That is incredible that the average pay off for student loans is 10-20 years. We paid ours off within just a few years of getting out of college. I am not trying to boast because we didn’t make a lot of money and we had $27,000 in student loans. Well, hopefully we can help people pay off their loans quicker through blogging.

  7. March 16, 2013 at 3:04 pm — Reply

    $24k per borrower in student loan debt (I guess I was better than average-in a bad way-$30k). Thankfully I was also better than average at paying them off and got them paid off in about 2 years. Life is so much more enjoyable when you do have a $30k gorilla sitting in your living room.

    • March 17, 2013 at 12:56 am — Reply

      That is quite the payoff period KK. You were only a statistic for a short while.

  8. March 19, 2013 at 11:34 pm — Reply

    It is sad how the US has gone from a producer nation to a debtor/consumer nation. We are in a world of hurt. They are printing so much money, ensuring a certain rise in inflation. Most people have no idea, lack of education will be what brings this country down!
    By the way, I dig the new look of the site!

    • March 20, 2013 at 8:45 am — Reply

      You are spot on that assessment Jim. It is the lack of education. Thanks for liking the new site.

  9. March 23, 2013 at 7:21 am — Reply

    Wow, Grayson. More startling news that should shake consumers to the core – but will it?

    • March 23, 2013 at 9:46 am — Reply

      No, it won’t and that is the problem. People have to be shown the issues and I want to be someone that will do that.

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