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Washington makes top 10 debt-ridden states

According to numbers from the Federal Reserve Bank, Washington is number eight on the list when ranking states from highest to lowest when it comes to per capita debt for each household. The numbers used to create the list go through 2014 and include debts such as car loans, mortgages, credit cards and student loans.

Though Washington's per capita debt per household has decreased since 2008, the numbers are still greater than those in 42 other states. As of 2014, total average debt per household in the state was $54,320.

The bulk of average debt in the state is related to mortgage debt. The average amount owed by households as of 2014 on mortgage accounts was $44,160; obviously, many households owed no mortgage payment and many others owed a significant amount more.

Other types of debts came in with similar averages in 2014. Households owed an average of $3,100 on credit card accounts, $3,350 on vehicle loans and $3,710 in student loan debt. It's interesting to note that from 2008 through 2014, the average for all types of debt except student loan debt either decreased or stayed relatively the same. Student loan debt numbers, however, increased during that time.

While debt has gone down since the so-called Great Recession in 2008 and 2009, it has not returned to former lows that were seen in years before the recession. Individuals struggling with debt of any type -- for any reason -- don't have to continue struggling for years. Bankruptcy and other legal relief exists so that individuals and families can deal with debt issues and move on to more positive futures.

Source: KOIN 6, "The 25 most debt-ridden states," Christina Lavingia, Dec. 23, 2015

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