25 states with the lowest levels of personal debt

Published: Tuesday, July 29 2014 11:36 p.m. MDT


A new study from the Urban Institute has mapped out American debt by state, and found that Utah has the lowest percentage of state population with past due debt.

UI also found the percentage of state populations with debt in collections, the average total amount of collections debt, and each state's household income for comparison purposes.

Read through the list to discover the 25 states with the lowest percentage of past due debt.

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Sandy, UT

Interesting. Statistics can be misleading . . . but take a look at the average household income in Washington D. C. It's pretty true what they say: There really hasn't been much of a recession in D. C., because they've got lots of our money to spend and enjoy.

West Jordan, UT

Good for Utah! Our average household income is right smack dab in the middle of these 25 states. I would be interested in knowing how many of those households are single income homes.

Chandler, AZ

To the people who commented on DC denizens benefiting from government there, remember that also spill over into Maryland and Virginia.

Centerville, UT

Hmm. Didn't I see in this very newspaper, just a year or so ago, how Utah was one of the leading states in foreclosures and bankruptcies? I wish the D-News would add a little more background to all these surveys and stats. They all seem to contradict each other.

Los Altos, CA

Have you ever been to Washington D. C.? I am amazed that the average income is that high. There is so much poverty in D. C. I assume you mean that the politicians have "lots" of your money. Many of the politicians do not live there, they live in home states. If you think that the rich live there, then you must see that the money of the rich does not trickle down to the poor. If these people are not in debt, it is because no one will loan them money.

Logan, UT


Utah having one of the highest bankruptcy and foreclosure rates does seem to contradict the statistics named in this article. I agree that more background and context should be given as well, and here's why.

One possibility is that when someone files Chapter 7 Bankruptcy, they get most if not all of their debt discharged. If they file Chapter 13 bankruptcy, their debts get consolidated into a court-ordered payment plan. In either case, their debt is no longer considered past-due and thus, high bankruptcies could lead to less percentage of people in past-due debt. It masks the credibility of Utah being "#1" !

As far as foreclosures go, I've seen people get foreclosed on (I work as a financial counselor) without having other debt that is past-due or in collections. This isn't very often, but it can happen.

The point is that a high amount of bankruptcies in our state can legitimately skew the implications of the statistic of "lowest levels of personal debt," at least in the context of trying to use that "finding" to say that we are a financially-responsible state.

So in the end, I am with you; this article doesn't mean much without context.

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