Consumers throughout the United States and in Oregon can still feel the pain of the recent recession. The housing bubble, a national banking crisis, high unemployment and high levels of credit card debt among consumers were some of the key contributing factors to this challenging time. People everywhere struggled to figure out the best way to handle their debt levels from credit counseling to bankruptcy and more.

According to some experts, the average American consumer is not out of the woods when it comes to financial challenges. The middle and lower classes are found to be relying as much or more on credit today than in the past. One report asserts that people are even relying on credit cards to afford basic daily living necessities such as gas or groceries making it a sign of virtual desperation. This is quite an opposing view to that put forth by other economists saying that the increase in credit card debt is a good sign and an indicator of improved consumer confidence.

Automobile sales also indicate a struggling middle and lower class. A 60-month car loan, once considered a long loan term, is now less than the national average of 66-months. Loan terms of 78 and 84 months together account for nearly 25 percent of all auto loans in the country.

Anyone who is considering filing for bankruptcy to get relief from creditor harassment and delinquent payments may consider a legal consultation first. Learning the facts about debt relief can be a good way to make the best choice for a better tomorrow.

Source: MarketWatch, “Americans are getting into debt to afford food, gas,” Peter Atwater, June 19, 2014