A new study indicates that while most Canadians say becoming debt-free is one of their top priorities, many are missing out on opportunities to pay off their expenses in a more expeditious fashion.
According to Manulife Bank's consumer debt survey, 77 percent of Canadian homeowners said becoming debt-free was a chief financial concern. However, when opportunities to reduce their debt loads presented themselves, more than six in 10 said they were unable to take advantage.
When asked to identify what these obstacles were, the top three barriers were lacking savings to put money toward repaying debt obligations, having too much debt and interest rates being too high.
"Canadians should be aware there are a variety of actions they can take to reduce their personal debt more quickly that don't take a lot of time or effort," said Doug Conick, president and CEO of Manulife.
He added that consumers can pay down their debts by creating a financial plan that establishes goals, consolidating debt to one low interest rate and seeking counsel from a professional financial advisor.
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