Americans have fallen back in love with debt.
Total household debt—a category that includes mortgages, student loans, and car loans along with credit card and other debt—dipped in the wake of the Great Recession, but it has since steadily rebounded in the years since. Overall, Americans’ debt hit a new high of $13 trillion last year, surpassing the previous record set in 2008 by $280 billion, according to the New York Fed.
MONEY dug into data from the Federal Reserve’s Survey of Consumer Finances to examine just how much debt—and of what types—Americans were carrying at every age.
As it turns out, people’s peak earning years also appear to be their peak debt years. People between the ages of 45 and 54 reported the highest levels of debt overall, totaling $134,600. Those in the 35-44 age bracket carry the second-largest amount, at $133,100.
Here’s how much Americans owe overall, broken down by age group:
Under 35: $67,400
75 and up: $34,500
That’s to be expected, says John D. Salter, professor of financial planning at Texas Tech University. “The trend tends to follow when people have children and those kids’ needs. We see that rise in debt at the time most people are looking for bigger homes to get more space for their family, buying cars for their children, or paying college tuition for them.”
People may also feel more comfortable taking on debt in these years, Salter speculates: This stage of life is also typically when people feel established in their careers, a time when they seek out promotions and raises and therefore experience higher earnings.