January 9, 2014 by Lisa Brammer
As conceptual standards go, the American Dream is iconic. It is essentially the idea that if you work hard and get a good education you can be successful and build a good, happy life for you and your family. But what exactly defines being “successful” and what makes a life good or happy?
The idea of the American Dream is actually older than the country itself. It began back in the 17th century when people started immigrating to this new unknown continent, bringing with them all of their hopes and dreams of a better life. While certainly some people came here looking for personal freedoms, many others dreamt of starting businesses and being landowners.
Owning your own home has always been associated with the American Dream. Herbert Hoover took it one step further and won the 1928 presidential election campaigning with his own version by promising “a chicken in every pot and a car in every garage.”
LoanDepot.com,LLC ( LoanDepot); the third largest private, independent retail mortgage lender in the United States, commissioned the Opinion Research Corporation to conduct an online survey. The results of this survey showed that 34 percent of respondents considered being debt free to be the new American Dream, followed by owning a home and being financially better off than their parents, each chosen by 25 percent of those surveyed.
Interestingly, Credit.com also conducted a survey on how people define the American Dream. In this survey debt-free came in second with a 23 percent vote. And, I think it’s worth mentioning that over 80 percent of all respondents thought being debt-free was obtainable. Being financially secure and retiring at 65 had the number one spot with a vote of almost 28 percent and owning a home came in third.
When asked in the Credit.com survey if the American Dream was within reach, 54.3 percent thought that it was and an additional 24 percent said they had already achieved it. Only 17.7 percent said no and 3.3 percent either gave no answer or said they didn’t know.
The American Dream is still very alive and obtainable but, since the Great Recession it seems like the yardstick we use to measure whether or not we are “living the dream” has changed, perhaps like everything else it has just been downsized.
Founded in 1950, United Credit Service, Inc. is a full service revenue cycle management and debt collection agency in Wisconsin providing highly effective, customized one on one management and recovery solutions for our business partners. We offer pre-service collection solutions as well as traditional back-end collections. Visit our website at http://www.unitedcreditservice.com or call 877-723-2902.