The Working Poor: From the Economic Margins to Asset Building

M J Hogan-Schiltgen, Catherine Solheim, Susan Wolfgram, Busisiwe Nkosi, Nicola Rodrigues

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Data from 25 participants in the Family Assets for Independence in Minnesota (FAIM) project were used to identify factors that enabled these low-income wage-earning families to save money and build assets. FAIM, part of the Individual Development Account movement, is a pilot program for families with incomes ≤ 200% of poverty to build assets. An analytic induction method was used to identify constructs from three waves of interviews conducted during 2001-2002. Our focus is on four of the eight major constructs that emerged: financial vulnerability, personal attributes, social support, and resource management strategies. Our findings provide evidence that low-income families can save money toward a goal in the face of hardships and become asset builders.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)229-236
Number of pages8
JournalFamily relations
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2004


  • Assets
  • Families
  • Individual Development Accounts
  • Policy
  • Poverty
  • Savings


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