The Definition of Household Debt differs in some countries.
In Canada and Australia, the official household debt figures include the debt of unincorporated businesses. This is normally included in the corporate debt figures of most other countries.
Therefore, if we compare household debt to Gross Domestic Product, or Incomes, then the comparison between Canada/Australia and other countries will not be accurate, as these two will be higher due to the inclusion of this business debt.
In some countries the bulk of Household Debt is Mortgages, and one example of this is Australia where the 2013 national accounts showed that three quarters (75%) of all household debt was housing debt.
In countries where renting is more common, the household debt should therefore be lower.
Also, in countries where houses are cheaper, maybe smaller etc, then again, household debt should be lower.
In a country where the average house is one or two bedrooms, the household debt to income ratio should be low, but if the average home is 4 or 5 bedrooms, with two or three bathrooms, and near the coastline, then the odds are that the Household Debt ratio will be much higher.
The total housing debt of Australian households was $1.38 trillion at the end of 2013, equivalent to $59,200 for every person living in Australia at that time. Other debt averaged nearly $20,000 per person.
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