Better Housing Market Improves Americans’ Finances
Americans are feeling the best they have about their financial situation in nearly four years, according to the latest CredAbility Consumer Distress Index, a nonprofit credit counseling service.
The improvements in the housing market is lessening the stress on Americans’ wallets, according to the report, which analyzed the financial condition of U.S. households in the second quarter, taking into account factors like employment, housing, credit, family budgets, and net worth.
Americans’ improving finances lately, according to the report, is mostly being driven by the number of home owners who have been able to cut their housing costs by refinancing into ultra-low mortgage rates and a big decrease in the number of home owners who are late on their mortgage payments.
“Slowly but surely, consumers have worked to repair their finances during the past four years by paying down debt and better managing their credit,” says Mark Cole, executive vice president of CredAbility. “They are more in control of their household budgets, increasing their savings even as gasoline prices have risen and the drought has started to affect food prices. While millions of people continue to battle unemployment, the majority of households with stable jobs and housing has made wise financial choices and are moving in the right direction.”
The study found that consumers’ finances are healthiest in Boston, Washington, D.C., Dallas, and Houston. Meanwhile, the cities with the most Americans financially distressed were in Orlando; Tampa-St. Petersburg, Fla.; Riverside-San Bernardino, Calif.; Las Vegas; and Miami-Fort Lauderdale, Fla.