A new study from online lending company LendingTree suggests that young people in Jacksonville owe more debt than many of their counterparts in other U.S. cities.
The study, conducted by researchers based on anonymous LendingTree customer data, looked at the amount of debt – not including mortgages – held by people between 22 and 37 years old in the country’s 50 largest cities. Of those 50 cities, Jax’s median personal debt ranked fifth.
According to the study, the median debt balance of young adults in Jacksonville is $25,947 – more than $2,000 over the study’s overall median of $23,064.
Roughly one in four of Jax’s young adults owes more than $50,000.
A breakdown of debt obligations reveals auto loans as the largest source of debt for young Jaxsons, followed closely by student loans. Not surprising, since this poll from The Zebra suggests millennials invest in cars without realizing the actual costs of them.
Jacksonville was the only Florida city to rank in the top 15. Interestingly, Miami’s median debt ranked in the bottom 10.
It’s somewhat unsurprising that Jacksonville is ranked high on this list. The spread-out nature of the city makes acquiring a car essential, and the city’s low cost of living also translates to lower wages on average – meaning debt can’t be paid off as quickly.
So how can we work on eliminating our debt? Some commonly recommended solutions for debt management include:
- Consolidating multiple loans into one account
- Refinancing older loans
- Putting down extra money on monthly payments whenever possible
Ultimately, each individual situation is unique and often requires (or at least benefits from) the assistance of qualified financial advisors. But LendingTree’s study suggests that the acquisition of debt is something about which young Jax residents should be especially cautious.