It's a Catch-22: You want to make progress on paying off your debt but, in order to do so, you take out yet another loan.
A new study from online lending company LendingTree finds that people are using personal loans to do exactly that: manage existing debt.
That comes as outstanding personal loans have reached more than $125 billion in combined balances. And the tally of personal loans today is about 20 million, according to LendingTree.
Meanwhile, total credit card debt has climbed to more than $1 trillion.
More from Personal Finance:
You're probably blowing your budget on these non-essential costs
Secret experiment reveals one key way to boost retirement savings
Here's why cost-conscious travelers continue to blow their vacation budgets
Most personal loan requests — 61 percent — are aimed at helping people get some wiggle room on their debts, LendingTree found.
The No. 1 reason people take out personal loans is debt consolidation, followed by credit card refinancing, the company's research found.
Consumers who applied for personal loans to manage their debts were also starting out with the highest balances. The average is $14,107 for credit card refinancing and $12,670 for debt consolidation.