Falling real estate prices have been particularly tough on small-business owners, who often use their homes or other personal property to help secure financing. "As the big guys are doing better, people ask, why not the smaller firms? Well, this is a huge part of the reason," said NFIB's William Dennis Jr. He notes that real estate may never be as reliable a borrowing mechanism as it was before the recession given the rise in property values leading up to the fall.

Related Summaries