ECONOMY AFFECTS MILLENNIALS’ HOMEOWNERSHIP

#HomeBuying #homeownership #millennials #RealEstate
Contrary to what one might think, millennials actually want to buy houses.
But, the economy is stopping them from doing so, in significant numbers.
As with previous generations, they believe owning is better than renting.
“We’re wasting money where we are right now,” said Chris Eidam, 27, who lives with his girlfriend near Bridgeport, Conn. “We just take our rent and we throw it away. That money doesn’t go to anything,” said Eidam, who was quoted in an article on the subject buy Agnel Philip for Bloomberg News. It was also published in the Jan. 1, 2018, edition of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
The article points out that stagnating wages, rising housing costs and lack of supply are hindering first-time home buyers.
Still, the article says, for two straight quarters, homeownership rate among those 35 and younger has increased.
But, these are not their parents’ times. Decades ago, a lender would look at a young person that had a steady job, figure out what payments they could afford and determine whether they could buy a certain house. The lenders actually bet on a person’s good name and reputation and loaned them the money.
Today, lending restrictions are stricter. Buyers, sellers and real estate agents, too, have to hope that the agreed upon price meets the lender’s appraisal. Often, the appraisal comes in less than the agreed-upon price, prompting sellers to back out of the deal. Lenders have encouraged appraisers to be strict, to come in less than the fair market value.
Secondly, today’s young folks don’t have the job security that their parents often did. If their parents worked at, say, the local phone company, and had a decent wage, the lender could look at that as an income unlikely to go away. Today, no job is “secure,” and paychecks could dry up just like that. Lenders don’t really want to own real estate and, during the recession, that real estate often came back to lenders worth less than the money owed. Some of that can be blamed on homeowners playing fast and loose with home equity, but that’s another story.
In the overall scheme of life, stricter lending standards may be a good thing. But to those wanting to buy their first home, they are a detriment.
Lending standards have relaxed some in recent times, the article says, but younger folks are carrying record levels of student debt and can struggle to qualify, according to the article.
Home building today is also geared more toward high-end homes, and away from so-called starter homes, the article says.
Still, the experts, according to the article, believe the home-buying market among millennials will equal, or come close to, that of their parents decades ago, the article quotes Ralph McLaughlin, chief economist at Trulia.
So what is a young person, or young couple, that wants to buy a home, to do? First, figure out what you can afford. Don’t expect your first house to be perfect, especially, as the article points out, if you expect to change jobs, or move away from your location. You can always trade up, or remodel, later.
If your income, debt load etc. is making home buying difficult, look for a vehicle that can augment your income by devoting a few, part-time, off-work hours a week. There are many, non W-2 vehicles out there to do that. To check out one of the best, message me.
Finally, if you see a house you can afford, and you are reasonably happy with the location, overlook any cosmetic deficiencies. You can fix those eventually with time, patience and elbow grease. Remember, too, that perfect houses, like perfect people, don’t exist. Every house will have something about it you don’t like. Don’t dismiss good deals out of hand over something you can ultimately fix.
Remember, too, that homeownership is not for everyone. It may have been part of the American Dream, but it’s no sin not to own. Owning your own home comes with great responsibility. If you don’t want or need that, rent, and invest in other things. In short, do the math, figure out the kind of life you want and proceed accordingly.
Peter

WORKING LONGER WILL MAKE YOU SICKER

#RaisingTheRetirementAge #retirement #WorkingLonger #disabilities
The government continues to raise the retirement age.
People are working longer.
Yet, their health continues to decline.
Ben Steverman discussed this in an article for Bloomberg News. It was also published Oct. 24, 2017, in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
“The age-adjusted mortality rate in the U.S. rose 1.2 percent from 2014 to 2015, according to the Society of Actuaries,” the article reads. “That’s the first year-over-year increase since 2005, and only the second rise greater than 1 percent since 1980,” the article says.
So, Americans are retiring later, dying sooner and are sicker, the article says.
Almost one in three Americans age 65 to 69 is still working, along with almost one in five in their early 70s, the article says.
Americans in their late 50s have more serious health problems than people of those same ages 10 to 15 years ago, according to the article. To boot, cognitive skills have declined. Those with a retirement age of 66, 11 percent already have had some kind of dementia between ages 58 and 60, the article quotes a study by University of Michigan economists HwaJung Choi and Robert Schoeni.
Experts say obesity, high rates of suicide, drug overdoses and alcohol abuse have been cited as causes, the article says.
The higher death rates are good news for pension plans, the article points out.
“Americans may have already seen most of the benefits from previous positive developments that cut the death rate, such as a decline in smoking and medical advances like statins that fight cardiovascular disease,” the article reads.
So are you among the group that feels worse than you think you should for your age? Has the economic downturn of 2008 got you working at a job you hate, when it’s high time for you to retire?
Perhaps a solution to the latter problem may relieve the difficulties of the former. There are many ways to make money beyond a traditional W-2 job – especially one that you hate, or that is making you sick. To check out one of the best such vehicles, message me.
And though pension plans may like this news – the Society of Actuaries calculates a typical pension plan’s obligations could fall by 0.7 to 1 percent , the article says – not everyone is fortunate enough to have a pension.
That puts the onus on every worker to make sure their retirement is not only survivable, but potentially prosperous.
This may entail some thought outside the proverbial box, especially if your employer is not providing you a pension.
If you’re young, start saving your money sooner. Cut out that extra coffee-shop visit or extra meal out, and put that money toward your retirement.
If you are older, not only must you think about how long you WANT to work, but also how long you will BE ABLE to work. It may not be an illness that gets you. You may be one bad manager or one reorganization away from a dead career.
You may not be able to solve health problems, but money problems can be conquered. You just have to have the best life you can, and try to live as long as possible.
Peter

MOST PEOPLE AREN’T SAVING ENOUGH FOR RETIREMENT

#retirement #pensions #savings
Most everyone knows or suspects that people aren’t saving enough for a decent retirement.
But a World Economic Forum report spells it out: People are living longer. Investment returns have been disappointing. Therefore, within three decades there will be a $400 trillion shortfall worldwide in retirement savings.
The report was cited in an article by Katherine Chiglinsky for Bloomberg News. It was published June 4, 2017, in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
The shortfall includes a $224 trillion gap among the six large pension-savings systems: the U.S., U.K., Japan, the Netherlands, Canada and Australia, the article quotes the report.
Employers have been moving away from pensions and offering defined-contribution plans, which include 401(k)s, and individual retirement accounts. Those categories make up about 50 percent of global retirement assets, Chiglinksy writes.
The report warned that the savings shortfall in the U.S. is growing at a rate of $3 trillion a year, and may climb at an annual rate of 7 percent in China and 10 percent in India – countries with aging populations, growing middle classes and a higher percentage of workers in informal sectors, Chiglinsky writes.
So, how are you set for your retirement?
Have you got a pension lined up? If so, it’s entirely possible that it won’t be there when you are ready to take it, or it could be reduced.
Social Security by itself won’t let you live a decent life. And, if Washington doesn’t act, benefits could be reduced eventually. Many experts say we needn’t fear that Social Security will go away entirely. But benefit reductions are a possibility in a few decades.
Think of your retirement planning this way: if it is to be, it’s up to ME.
If you are young, and just starting your career, make retirement savings a priority. If you aren’t raking in big bucks, start with a small percentage of what you are making. Put that money away. Don’t touch it!
Once your savings have grown to an investible amount, say, a few thousand dollars, get it out of your bank savings account and put it into something that will pay you higher rates. Get good advice from a financial planner that you trust. You may want to start with fairly safe – everything outside of insured bank deposits carry some risk – investments, and diversify more as your money grows.
If you are older, you need to put more of what you earn into retirement savings. Young folks have lots of time to balance gains and losses. Middle-aged folks have much less time. Talk to a financial planner about you goals, and let him or her guide you as to how much to save, and in what vehicles to invest.
Of course, cutting spending is a must. Increasing income may give you a leg up on your retirement savings. To learn about one of best vehicles for doing both, message me.
In short, you can take matters into your own hands. It’s all about setting priorities, making good choices and sticking to your plan.
Whatever you sacrifice now, be it $100 a month in lattes, taking too many expensive trips etc., will pay you back in spades when your job goes away. And you don’t have to live in complete deprivation to do it.
Just look for value in what you buy, and make good choices in how you save.
Peter

RETIREMENT SAVINGS SHORTFALL PREDICTED

#retirement #savings #RetirementSavingsShortfall
Most everyone knows or suspects that people aren’t saving enough for a decent retirement.
But a World Economic Forum report spells it out: People are living longer. Investment returns have been disappointing. Therefore, within three decades there will be a $400 trillion shortfall worldwide in retirement savings.
The report was cited in an article by Katherine Chiglinsky for Bloomberg News. It was published June 4, 2017, in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
The shortfall includes a $224 trillion gap among the six large pension-savings systems: the U.S., U.K., Japan, the Netherlands, Canada and Australia, the article quotes the report.
Employers have been moving away from pensions and offering defined-contribution plans, which include 401(k)s, and individual retirement accounts. Those categories make up about 50 percent of global retirement assets, Chiglinksy writes.
The report warned that the savings shortfall in the U.S. is growing at a rate of $3 trillion a year, and may climb at an annual rate of 7 percent in China and 10 percent in India – countries with aging populations, growing middle classes and a higher percentage of workers in informal sectors, Chiglinsky writes.
So, how are you set for your retirement?
Have you got a pension lined up? If so, it’s entirely possible that it won’t be there when you are ready to take it, or it could be reduced.
Social Security by itself won’t let you live a decent life. And, if Washington doesn’t act, benefits could be reduced eventually. Many experts say we needn’t fear that Social Security will go away entirely. But benefit reductions are a possibility in a few decades.
Think of your retirement planning this way: if it is to be, it’s up to ME.
If you are young, and just starting your career, make retirement savings a priority. If you aren’t raking in big bucks, start with a small percentage of what you are making. Put that money away. Don’t touch it!
Once your savings have grown to an investible amount, say, a few thousand dollars, get it out of your bank savings account and put it into something that will pay you higher rates. Get good advice from a financial planner that you trust. You may want to start with fairly safe – everything outside of insured bank deposits carry some risk – investments, and diversify more as your money grows.
If you are older, you need to put more of what you earn into retirement savings. Young folks have lots of time to balance gains and losses. Middle-aged folks have much less time. Talk to a financial planner about you goals, and let him or her guide you as to how much to save, and in what vehicles to invest.
Of course, cutting spending is a must. Increasing income may give you a leg up on your retirement savings. To learn about one of best vehicles for doing both, message me.
In short, you can take matters into your own hands. It’s all about setting priorities, making good choices and sticking to your plan.
Whatever you sacrifice now, be it $100 a month in lattes, taking too many expensive trips etc., will pay you back in spades when your job goes away. And you don’t have to live in complete deprivation to do it.
Just look for value in what you buy, and make good choices in how you save.

Peter

HOW HARD IS IT FOR YOU TO LEAVE WORK?

#work #All-ConsumingJob #FamilyFriends #fun
You don’t work an eight-hour day.
You don’t know when to leave the office.
Even when you leave, work goes home with you.
Perhaps you’ve made a new year’s resolution to spend more time with family, friends and other people or things that give you pleasure.
But, you feel you can’t.
There’s a crisis at work you have to deal with.
Laura Petrecca discussed this topic in a Jan. 16, 2017, article in USA Today. Here are some figures quoted in the article:
• 60 percent of people have dreamed about something at work;
• 49 percent check work e-mail after work hours;
• 46 percent work during non-business hours;
• 44 percent are up at night thinking about work;
• 15 percent gave up vacation days.
Here’s another stat: the average person in Europe works about 19 percent less than the average American. Thus U.S. workers put in 25 percent more hours than Europeans, according to a study by a group of economists, quoted in an article by Ben Steverman for Bloomberg News. The article was published March 13, 2017, in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
You may know your job is eating you alive, but you fear that if you don’t put in the extra effort, you may be replaced.
News flash: you may be laid off regardless of how well you’ve performed, or how much extra effort you’ve put in.
“There is pressure globally … to do more with less,” Petrecca’s article quotes Patrick Kulesa, director of employee research at Willis Towers Watson.
So what does one do to bring sanity back into his or her life? One way is to just stop working when you get home. Reserve your home space strictly for family, friends and pleasurable activities.
If you have an after-hours crisis at work that requires immediate attention, deal with it at work, so you can go home with a clean slate.
Or, create a Plan B for earning money in what spare time you have, so you can eventually kiss the pressure cooker goodbye. There are many such ways to do that. To learn about one of the best, message me.
Instantaneous communication has become both a blessing and a curse. Take advantage of its blessing to give you pleasure, and pay less attention to the curse that allows work to follow you home.
In short, give yourself a break. Know that no matter what you do, you are not indispensable at work. Know that your boss will not hesitate to let you go if it makes his numbers look good, regardless of the effort you’ve put in.
Leave work at work. Delegate more of what you do, if you can. If you are good at what you do, look for other options if your situation shows no end in sight.
There’s only one you. You deserve to engage in the pleasure of family, friends and enjoyable activities. Don’t let a job deprive you of that.
It’s OK to enjoy your work, but it should not control you, or keep you from other things. No matter what happens at work, learn to live well.
Peter

MILLENNIALS ARE QUITTING THEIR JOBS OFTEN

“God, today we pray for all those who are looking for a job. Guide them to the company you have for them. Grant them favor with employers and fill them with patience and wisdom as they search. Provide every need as they wait on you! In Jesus’ name, Amen!
Prayer for Employment www.facebook.com/circleofprayer

#millennials #jobs #QuittingYourJob

A few years ago, if you were fortunate enough to have a job, you did what you could to hold on to it.
If you were out of a job, you pounded the pavement. Perhaps you prayed.
Today, according to a Bloomberg News article by Natalie Kitroeff, quitting is in.
More than 3 million Americans quit their job in December 2015, Kitroeff writes. That’s the highest number since 2006, Kitroeff quotes the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The quits rate, which measures how many people ended their employment out of everyone who worked in a given month, reached its highest level in seven years, Kitroeff writes.
Millennials, those between 18 and 34 years old, became the largest segment of the U.S. labor market, and that work force is expected to increase even more. They seem to be averse to spending their work lives at one desk, Kitroeff writes.
This shows that the economy is definitely improving. Workers, particularly young workers, don’t generally quit their jobs unless they have another one, or are confident they will get one fairly quickly.
Kitroeff quotes a survey by accounting giant Deloitte of 7,500 working, college-educated professionals born after 1982 in 29 countries. Sixty-six percent hoped to have a different job in five years from now, or sooner. Forty-four percent said they would quit within two years and 25 percent said they would quit this year, to either start a new job or “do something different.”
The millennials’ parents and grandparents, for the most part, craved the security of a job. They craved the benefits – health insurance, pension, vacation time etc. – as well as the steady paycheck.
Millennials seem to have a different outlook on work, the future etc. Much of the benefits their forebears craved have been significantly reduced, or have gone away entirely.
For previous generations, the benefits a job provided were both a blessing and a curse. They blessed those employees with something extra that was worth real money. They cursed them, because they kept them tied to a job, when they might have wanted to go to work elsewhere. Some have even used the term, “golden handcuffs,” to describe a benefit-laden job that a person just can’t afford to give up.
One of the benefits of the Affordable Care Act is that it allows workers to have health insurance that is not tied to a job. This could embolden them to want to leave one employment situation for another.
Are you now in a job that you hate, that doesn’t use the many skills and talents you have, or doesn’t provide you with the future you believe you deserve? If you need the steady paycheck, one solution might be to work on a Plan B outside of work. A Plan B might provide you with an income cushion so you can look for a position more to your liking. For one of the best Plan Bs, visit www.bign.com/pbilodeau.
Traditional employment is changing. Perhaps you seek the independence that a traditional job does not provide. Perhaps you want to be an entrepreneur and work for yourself. Perhaps your boss doesn’t see how valuable you really are.
Allow yourself to dream. Get a Plan B. Independence awaits those who want it, and are willing to look for it.
Peter