DENVER (5/5/14)--Half of U.S. adults say their most important financial goal is having enough money for retirement, according to a new survey conducted on behalf of the National Endowment for Financial Education (NEFE) by Harris Poll.
Meanwhile, the status of homeownership is on the wane, the poll found.
The percentage of consumers who cite having enough money for retirement as their top financial goal has been on the rise since the recent recession, according to NEFE. In 2011, when the organization asked American adults the same question, 47% said having enough money for retirement was their top financial goal.
The "American Dream" has long been associated with the comfort, security and status of homeownership. However, today the perceived importance of homeownership appears to be waning. In 2011, 17% said homeownership was their most-important financial goal, compared to just 13% in the latest findings.
"People are more in tune with the importance of saving for their retirement years," said Ted Beck, NEFE president/CEO. "Economic recovery is inching forward yet many individuals and families still are experiencing difficulty getting back on track. Americans seem to be finding reassurance in more long-term, financial security-based values rather than material values."
The 2014 online survey of 2,025 U.S. adults ages 18 and older asks respondents to consider their financial goals and the challenges of meeting those objectives. In thinking about their own financial situations, 60% feel they are achieving the "American Dream," compared with 57% in 2011. But there are barriers that limit people from reaching their goals, with 63% citing the inability to save enough as an obstacle--compared with 70% in 2011--and 47% stating that managing debt is a hindrance--compared with 54% in 2011.