47 million say they are worse off now than pre-recession

But two thirds of homeowners in the same house say it’s worth more

47 million say they are worse off now than pre-recession

It was ten years ago this month that the Great Recession ended but there is still disparity between those that have gained since and those that are still struggling.

According to a new Bankrate.com survey, 23% of respondents – equivalent to 47 million people – who were adults at the time of the recession say their overall financial situation is worse now than it was then.

The share is higher (26%) for those that say they were negatively impacted by the recession compared to those who say they were not (14%). Women and those with lower income and education levels are also more likely to say they are worse off now. 

While 46% of those who owned a home back then say it lost value during the recession, 66% of those who still live in the same home that they did before the recession started in December 2007 say their home is worth more now than it was pre-recession. Another 23% say the value is about the same as it was back then and 11% say their home is worth less.

“The echoes of the Great Recession remain very present in the financial lives of many Americans, despite the improvement in the broader economy,” said Mark Hamrick, senior economic analyst at Bankrate.com. “While some have managed to prosper in the decade since, there are still tens of millions who are struggling to even get back to where they were before the economy took a turn for the worse.”

How recession has changed people

The most common post-recession response among all US adults is focusing on paying down debt (29%), followed by saving more for emergencies (23%) and retirement (18%), actively looking for a better job (14%) and now having a more affordable home/mortgage (12%).

“While the current economic expansion is on track to set a record for duration, there will be a downturn at some point, we just don’t know when,” added Hamrick. “That’s why it is critically important for Americans to try to save now for emergencies and for retirement while paying down or paying off debt. Don’t wait to prepare until after it is too late when a financial storm has already arrived.”

The full survey is at: https://www.bankrate.com/personal-finance/smart-money/great-recession-survey-june-2019/