A New Look at the American Dream

A New Look at the American Dream

Core Facts

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Whenever the conversation turns to financial goals and a secure future, certain ideas at the core of The American Dream pop up -- save for retirement and own your own home are two of those.  However, times have changed economically.  

Buying a House 

The 2008 housing crisis put many Americans in a difficult position. The bubble undermined the old adage that you should buy a home as soon as possible and pay off the mortgage before you retire, so that you have a secure asset in the future. But remember that a house is a very long-term investment. You’ll be paying down the mortgage for 30 years. 

Last year only 32% of home buyers were first timers. Millennials, who are in their early twenties and did not experience the housing crisis, are still keen to buy a home. If you are getting ready to retire, you might want to think about renting instead. Home ownership can be more expensive than you expect. Retirees might do better to secure income from investments than to sink the money into a new house.

Retirement Saving

After WWII, the idea of retirement with a pension really took hold, and by the 1970s this was the norm. The American way was to go to school, get a good job, work hard, and retire with a pension. In 1900, 65% of Americans over the age of 65 were still working.  By 1965, that was down to 17%. Very few jobs today offer that option.  

Today, 36% of Americans don’t contribute to any retirement or pension plan, and 24% say they have postponed their retirement at last once already. Almost 20% of Americans 65 and older are now working, according to the latest data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. That’s the highest since the early 1960s, before the U.S. enacted Medicare.

Social Security 

Right now, 35% of Americans over the age of 65 rely on Social Security for their retirement income yet what was the backbone of so many American retirement plans for the last 50 years, is now not such a sure thing anymore. Six out of every 10 Americans believe that there will not be sufficient funds in Social Security when they reach retirement age. 

That old American Dream is not what it once was. To be successful and then retire with sufficient funds to enjoy your golden years, you have to rethink your strategy. It’s up to you to craft your own American Dream – no one is going to do it for you. Work with an experienced investment advisor who can help you set and meet your financial goals.



Material contained in this article is provided for information purposes only and is not intended to be used in connection with the evaluation of any investments offered by David Lerner Associates, Inc. This material does not constitute an offer or recommendation to buy or sell securities and should not be considered in connection with the purchase or sale of securities. 

To the extent that this material concerns tax matters, it is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, by a taxpayer for the purpose of avoiding penalties that may be imposed by law. Each taxpayer should seek independent advice from a tax professional based on his or her individual circumstances.

These materials are provided for general information and educational purposes based upon publicly available information from sources believed to be reliable-- we cannot assure the accuracy or completeness of these materials. The information in these materials may change at any time and without notice.

David Lerner Associates does not provide tax or legal advice. The information presented here is not specific to any individual's personal circumstances. Member FINRA & SIPC


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Founded in 1976, David Lerner Associates is a privately-held broker/dealer with headquarters in Syosset, New York and branch offices in Westport, CT; Boca Raton, FL; Teaneck and Princeton, NJ; and White Plains, NY. For more information contact David Lerner Associates Call 516-921-4200 Visit our website: www.davidlerner.com

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Jake Mendlinger
Account Manager
516.829.8374 X 232

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