Among the estimated 1.7 million credit-active county residents, 3% have bad debts totaling an average of $18,000 in unsecured loans. But the number of debtors trying to get out of hock is on the rise, according to Consumer Credit Counselors of Orange County, a nonprofit agency. In most cases it was the denial of credit or insurance, based on information received from credit reports, that motivated the debtors to take action. Here's how the trend looks:
Number Total % Increase Year Counseled Debt Paid in Payment 1986 2,060 $2,309,000 -- 1987 2,230 3,103,000 34.4 1988 2,273 3,413,000 10.0 1989 2,539 3,496,000 2.4 January through August 1990 2,146 *2,692,000 --
* An estimated $4 million will be repaid in 1990.
Source: Consumer Credit Counselors of Orange County Inc.