A recent survey of adults 45 years old and older finds that 26% of respondents said that changes in the economy made it difficult for their families to pay the mortgage or rent. Fully 53% said they had difficulty paying utilities. Adding to the pain, 36% responded that their home had lost value in the past 12 months. The survey was conducted for AARP.
While about a quarter of all respondents worried about being foreclosed on themselves, the proportion was higher (31%) for those between 45 and 54 years of age. Seventy percent of all respondents indicated they had some concerns about the value of their home falling.
When asked what the decline in home values “caused you to do,” 36% of respondents said it caused them to be more concerned about crime in their neighborhood, apparently due to the presence of foreclosed homes. Eighteen percent said that the falling price of homes made them consider staying in the workforce longer.
The survey of 1002 respondents was conducted from April 12 to April 23, 2008. The margin of error for the full sample is + 3.1%. In addition to inquiring about housing, the survey asked a broad range of questions related to the impact of the economic slowdown. A summary from the survey as well as a report are available here: www.aarp.org/research/economy/trends/economy_survey.html.