Seriously, a couple decades ago you could go to a bank an open an account where the rates were at least competitive with inflation. These days, the typical interest rate is well under 1% with the Fed purposefully keeping inflation above 2% on the belief that inflation is good.
That also keeps mortgage interest rate extremely low. My first mortgage, several decades ago, was 8.5%, which was really good at the time. We moved last year and I think it's under 3.5% now. From 1975 to 1990 the average fixed rate 30 year mortgage barely dipped below 10% and was as high as 18%.
Well, inflation isn't good, having inflationary expectations discourages people from saving money. Granted, you don't want long stretches of deflation either, but we're getting exactly what should have been predicted.
Inflation in the 1970's is part of why the mortgage rates hit almost 20% in the late 70's through the early 80's.
What's more, companies don't pay people based upon their value to the company these days, they pay the bare minimum they can get away with in most cases. Sure there are exceptions, but those exceptions have a harder time staying in business.
That's always been the case. The difference is that there is no loyalty to anything anymore. Employees have no loyalty to the company they work for and will leave to go somewhere else for ten cents a day more. And employers will replace you for the dumbest of reasons. Replacing pensions with 401K's looked great on paper. But the unintended consequences weren't so great.
And no, blue collar workers around here would have a really hard time saving for a house when rent alone is typically aroudn $12k per year.
I don't know where you live. But that's pretty cheap from what I've seen rent wise.It could certainly be done on a blue collar salary. The bigger problem is, is that most blue collar jobs are disappearing.