It was also more vulnerable to one parent getting laid off, and when that happened, the effort to keep the children in good school districts saw many parents drive to bankruptcy courts more often than to the lavish malls. This got compounded by mortgage costs that increased 70 times as compared to a man's wages over a span of one generation. Gone were the days when a one-income middle class family could be home owners. Today's families need both incomes to make the basic payments like mortgage, health insurance, education and day care costs.
When the government deregulated the home mortgage-lending industry and the credit card industry in the early 1980s without any public debate, the detrimental concept of sub-prime lending was its devious off-shoot. It's a one way street to hell when families go in for a second mortgage or refinance the mortgage on their home. Hardworking middle class families find themselves with no financial support through retirement, they can't dream of sending their children to college and will in all likelihood find themselves without a roof over their heads. (Mieszkowski, Katharine).