Skip to main content
News Release

New Survey: One in Three Americans Would Be Unable to Make Housing Payment After Job Loss

September 27, 2011

Free Financial Planning Days Offered in October to Help Americans Worried about Finances

Washington, DC, September 27, 2011 – A majority of Americans are worried about their financial situations and are devoting significant time to planning and managing their personal or family finances. However, one in three Americans would only be able to pay their mortgage or rent payment for one month or less, if they lost their job, according to a new financial planning survey released today by a financial consortium comprised of the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Financial Planning Association, Foundation for Financial Planning and The U.S. Conference of Mayors.

The survey revealed that despite 72 percent of adults spending time at least once a month or more on financial planning-related activities, 31 percent would be unable to maintain their mortgage or rent payments beyond one month, if they become unemployed.

These survey results highlight a growing need for accessible and competent financial advice – a need that the financial consortium is seeking to meet by offering the second annual Financial Planning Days ( in 31 cities across the United States on Saturdays throughout October.

One of the main goals of Financial Planning Days is to bring the benefits of professional financial advice to traditionally underserved demographics where the need is greatest. These latest survey findings support the initiative by showing that among Americans who make $35,000 or less annually, almost a quarter would be unable to make any mortgage or rent payment if they lost their job. Of those that indicated they would be unable to make any payment, nearly 25 percent had a high school education or less. During Financial Planning Days, experts from the Financial Planning Association® and highly qualified CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professionals will volunteer their time to offer free, “no-strings-attached” advice through one-on-one sessions and workshops.

In these consultations, financial planners will answer questions on topics ranging from budgeting, managing credit, getting out of debt, income taxes, homeownership, dealing with mortgage foreclosures, planning and paying for college, estate planning and insurance, and many other topics. Free classroom-style workshop presentations covering key personal finance topics will also be available.

The financial planning community and city governments across the country hope these unique events will empower all individuals, regardless of age or income, to make a financial plan to help achieve their financial goals.

Events are planned in the following metro areas:

Atlanta, GA Las Vegas, NV Reno, NV
Baltimore, MD Los Angeles, CA Sacramento, CA
Chicago, IL Louisville, KY San Antonio, TX
Columbus, OH Mesa, AZ San Diego, CA
Denver, CO Miami, FL San Francisco, CA
Elizabeth, NJ Minneapolis, MN San Jose, CA
Eugene, OR Newark, NJ Seattle, WA
Green Bay, WI Oakland, CA Virginia Beach, VA
Houston, TX Omaha, NE Washington, DC
Indianapolis, IN Philadelphia, PA  
Irvine, CA Portland, OR  

KRC Research conducted 1,021 telephone interviews among a representative sample of Americans 18 years of age or older. The margin of error for the entire sample is plus or minus 3.1 percent. The survey was fielded nationally September 15-20, 2011.

Results of the entire survey can be found here .

About CFP Board
The mission of Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards (CFP Board) is to benefit the public by granting the CFP® certification and upholding it as the recognized standard of excellence for personal financial planning. The Board of Directors, in furthering CFP Board's mission, acts on behalf of the public, CFP® professionals and other stakeholders. CFP Board owns the certification marks CFP® , CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, CFP® (with plaque design) and CFP® (with flame design) in the U.S., which it awards to individuals who successfully complete CFP Board’s initial and ongoing certification requirements. CFP Board currently authorizes more than 63,000 individuals to use these marks in the U.S. For more information about CFP Board, visit or call 800-487-1497.

About Foundation for Financial Planning
The mission of the Foundation for Financial Planning is to help people take control of their financial lives by connecting the financial planning community with people in need. The Foundation funds programs that provide pro bono financial planning, and connect volunteers through the involvement of the financial planning and services community. The Foundation strives to help people who are underserved by the market, in need of financial guidance, or in a financial crisis. The Foundation aims to improve the lives of all Americans through access to pro bono financial planning and financial life skills education to provide those at all socio-economic levels with the knowledge to control their financial lives and opportunities to obtain unbiased financial advice in time of crisis and disaster. For more information about the Foundation for Financial Planning, visit

About The U.S. Conference of Mayors
The U.S. Conference of Mayors is the official nonpartisan organization of cities with populations of 30,000 or more. There are 1,204 such cities in the country today. Each city is represented in the Conference by its chief elected official, the mayor. More information about the Conference is available at

# # #