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Dale Jackson

Personal Finance Columnist, Payback Time


ANALYSIS: Another day, another survey showing just how wrapped up Canadians have become in debt.

The generation that survived two world wars and a depression viewed debt as a necessary evil – to be used as needed, and eradicated as soon as possible.

Today debt has become a warm, borrowed blanket that shields us from the world’s financial realities.

According to credit rating agency, TransUnion, the average Canadians carries over $21,000 in non-mortgage consumer debt. Statistics Canada says we owe $1.60 for every dollar we earn each year.


Weigh In

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Do you carry credit card debt?

    Total Results: 0

    The national delusion is apparent in the latest survey from Ipsos Reid showing Canadians are resigned to a lifetime of debt, while clinging to the belief that their financial future is bright.

    Here are the highlights:       

    • 73 per cent of Canadians carry debt.
    • 23 per cent of them say they will never be debt-free
    • 46 per cent say the rising cost of living is making it more difficult to pay down their debt
    • And yet, with millennial (under) employment, unmanageable student debt and rising housing prices, four-in-ten Canadians somehow believe their children will be better off than they are

    The poll was done on behalf of BDO Canada, a licensed insolvency trustee. BDO has tips for Canadians wanting to break the debt trap:

    • Put a realistic financial plan in place that will help reverse the accumulation of debt and eventually wipe it out
    • Learn methods to reduce debt through ways such as low-interest consolidation loans, and avoid new debt
    • Find out about the importance of stress testing your debt before interest rates rise
    • Learn about debt relief options that are available to Canadians