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Average Credit Card Debt Canada

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Understanding the average credit card debt in Canada is essential for consumers seeking to make informed decisions about their financial situation. In this article, we will explore the current state of debt in Canada, including the various types of debt and the average amounts for each category. By comparing to the national averages and learning about good debt management strategies, individuals can better evaluate their financial well-being and take necessary steps towards financial security.

The Current State of Canadian Debt

Debt plays a significant role in the financial landscape of many Canadians, ranging from mortgages and student loans to credit card balances. According to Equifax, the average consumer debt in Canada reached $73,532 by the end of 2020, with a year-over-year increase of 2.7%. This total includes debts such as mortgages, credit cards, lines of credits, and installment loans.

What is the Average Credit Card Debt in Canada?

On average, Canadians hold approximately $4,226 in credit card debt, according to TransUnion's Q4 2020 report. This debt varies based on factors such as age, economic conditions, and regional factors. It is essential to consider these factors when comparing your credit card debt to national averages.

Statistics About Canadian Debt

  • Based on the 2020 Canadian Survey of Financial Capability (CSFC), around 73.2% of Canadians have some form of debt, with a median debt amount of $23,000.

  • Approximately 43.6% of Canadians cited their mortgage as their most significant debt.

  • Credit cards represent the most significant debt for 25.6% of Canadians according to the CSFC.

Good Debt vs. Bad Debt

Understanding the difference between good debt and bad debt can help individuals make informed financial decisions.

Good Debt:

  • Good debt is typically associated with investments that generate long-term value and financial growth, such as education, real estate, or small business loans.

  • These types of debt provide opportunities to increase income or wealth over time.

Bad Debt:

  • Bad debt is often related to consumer purchases that do not provide long-term financial benefits, such as credit card debt from non-essential expenditures.

  • These types of debt can inhibit financial growth and generate high-interest expenses.

Average Student Loan Debt in Canada

According to a Statistics Canada report in 2019, the average student loan debt for Canadians who recently completed post-secondary education was estimated at around $28,000.

Average Mortgage Debt in Canada

As of Q2 2021, the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) reported the national average price of homes sold in Canada was $688,000. However, mortgage balances vary significantly depending on factors such as location, housing market trends, and individual financial circumstances.

Tips to Pay Off Debt Quickly

  1. Follow the 50/30/20 Rule: Divide your after-tax income into three categories: essentials (50%), discretionary spending (30%), and savings/debt repayment (20%). Use your savings and debt repayment budget to accelerate your debt reduction.

  2. Use the Snowball or Avalanche Method:

Snowball Method:

  • Prioritize your debts from the smallest to the largest balance.

  • Focus on repaying the smallest debt first while making minimum payments on the rest.

  • Once the smallest debt is paid off, move to the next smallest until all debts are paid.

Avalanche Method:

  • Prioritize your debts based on the highest interest rate.

  • Focus on repaying the highest interest debt first while making minimum payments on the rest.

  • Once the highest interest debt is paid off, move to the next highest interest rate until all debts are paid.

  1. Consult a Financial Advisor: Seeking advice from a professional financial advisor can provide personalized insights and strategies to tackle your debt effectively.


Understanding the average credit card debt in Canada and broader trends in national debt can provide perspective and context for evaluating your financial situation. Being aware of various types of debts, their potential impacts on your financial growth, and strategies for efficient debt repayment are essential components of responsible financial management.

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