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Housing starts down; Unemployment is up


Dirtyhip
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I don't like wishing my time forward, but I really wish it was our closing day.  I just want those pens in everyone's hands, so we can close on the house.  It is my belief that we are headed into a new recession.  Some people have not recovered from the last one.  I worry for those that are spending like mad, and not thinking of the future.

Are you ready for the next one?  Have you done anything to prepare for another recession?  

We have cut spending, increased cash and investment holdings, and paid off all debt.  Our portfolio is well diversified in all sectors, and I am a tad more conservative for our age in terms of bond and cash holdings.  People our age should be closer to 78% stocks.  That is a little scary for my tastes.

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1 minute ago, bikeman564™ said:

not sure about housing, but unemployment is low at <4% aboot a month ago. Right?

Down to 3.7%.   Housing starts are off due to a decline in multi family starts from the little bit I read.   Always good to be prepared but not sure another recession is imminent.

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Maybe not a recession but a housing slowdown is going on in Portland. House next to MIL on market for 3 months with 4(!) price drops. But only like $5k drops. One of our contractors is backing off infill which has been a great money maker. Focusing on subdivisions

My belief is prices are bumping up against income requirements. The higher interest rates add to that squeeze

However...house in Bend across the alley sold in 3 days

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1 hour ago, Dirtyhip said:

 

Are you ready for the next one?  Have you done anything to prepare for another recession?  

We have cut spending, increased cash and investment holdings, and paid off all debt.  Our portfolio is well diversified in all sectors, and I am a tad more conservative for our age in terms of bond and cash holdings.  People our age should be closer to 78% stocks.  That is a little scary for my tastes.

I’m more into this philosophy.

19 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 
20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal.
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3 minutes ago, Longjohn said:

I’m more into this philosophy.

19 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 
20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal.

“Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. 26 And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. 27 And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it.”

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4 minutes ago, TrentonMakes said:

Everybody's eating healthier!  More leafy greens, fruits, beans and whole grains!  Housing farts are way up.

edit: I suppose it's ill-advised to follow up Scripture with this drivel.

Shhh, don’t tell anyone where that quote came from. We don’t want this moved. It was just from a book I was reading.

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1 hour ago, Dirtyhip said:

I don't like wishing my time forward, but I really wish it was our closing day.  I just want those pens in everyone's hands, so we can close on the house.  It is my belief that we are headed into a new recession.  Some people have not recovered from the last one.  I worry for those that are spending like mad, and not thinking of the future.

Are you ready for the next one?  Have you done anything to prepare for another recession?  

We have cut spending, increased cash and investment holdings, and paid off all debt.  Our portfolio is well diversified in all sectors, and I am a tad more conservative for our age in terms of bond and cash holdings.  People our age should be closer to 78% stocks.  That is a little scary for my tastes.

I am fortunate to have more retirement income than I spend, but it's important to compare only my sure income vs spending - including avg. long-term costs for home maintenance, new car, etc. When the stock market is up, I could get fooled into spending beyond my bare-bones means if I just kept track of my gains in liquid assets - mostly due to stocks.  So I make sure I'm living beneath my means in terms of my pension + Soc.Sec. + bond & CD interest and make sure certain CD's and bonds are earmarked for next car, etc.

I keep a wish list of potential vacations and their expected prices and their expected physical requirements (I'm 68 and should get back into shape now that my shoulder is healed so I can climb Mt. Kilimanjaro within the next few years) and make sure next year's big vacation(s) plus hobby expenses (a hybrid bike? a new computer?) don't cost more than the amount my sure income exceeded my costs the current year.

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I agree with some of the posts here about not going overboard on possessions.  But having grown up in the poorest home in a neighborhood in the armpit of my county, it's clear that Poverty Sucks: financial problems creating tensions in the home so thick you can almost cut them with a knife, no gloves for winter, no vacations, spread the jam as a thin-film on bread so the jar lasts, etc.

When I worked my way through college plus a grad-school scholarship and teaching assistantship, I admired the rich kids who could pursue their own passions without worrying if those careers would pay the mortgage.  I didn't expect to get rich, but I wanted to be well-off enough to retire early (56) and then be financially set so I could do as the rich kids could do.  There were several lean years at first but, with my mortgage paid-off, being able to do pretty much what I want is where I am now and the lack of the stress I have, but which I see in a lot of friends and relatives living pay- or Soc.Sec.- check-to-check, is a real big deal!

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I will be going part time in January, with fill retirement in July.  We have moved our investments to more conservative ones the past few years. The longer the recovery, the closer we get to another recession.  whether it will be sudden, as in the S&L crisis in the 80s, or the housing crisis in 2007, or a more gradual slow down, who knows.

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Report on the local news last night.  Existing home sales in the area were down for the 3rd straight month.  The reporter started the piece sounding all doom and gloom.  Comparing it to 2008.  Then she brought in a 'expert' professor from a local university.  He did a great job with charts and graphs.

3 straight months down 'from an all time high' - unemployment in the 3+% range - rental vacancies in the 4% range - population growth on the 7+ range - average home price continues to increase.

The sky is not falling - yet.  New home starts are down - he attributed that to increased interest rates (which are still low by historical standards). Interest rates are increasing slightly and the growth in the increased home price is declining (not negative).  It still sat at 15% for the last 12 months.

 

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Just now, Longjohn said:

General motors just announced they are shutting down the Lordstown, Ohio Chevy plant in the spring. Those employees are in for a culture shock. They might have to move to find that kind of pay again.

And Ford just announced the addition of 2500 new jobs in Michigan.

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52 minutes ago, Longjohn said:

I’m more into this philosophy.

19 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 
20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal.

All due respect, but not all of us have a nice pension to fall back on when we are older.  Many of us have to plan to care for ourselves.  It is not prudent for me to stop doing that planning and preparation.  

You stopped working and are able to have funds rolling in from soc security and pension.  Soc Security may have problems as well.  This is bleak future for those that have not prepared.

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3 minutes ago, Dirtyhip said:

All due respect, but not all of us have a nice pension to fall back on when we are older.  Many of us have to plan to care for ourselves.  It is not prudent for me to stop doing that planning and preparation.  

You stopped working and are able to have funds rolling in from soc security and pension.  Soc Security may have problems as well.  This is bleak future for those that have not prepared.

I'm a party of one w/ no pension. And not all pensions are safe either, or SS for that matter.

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1 hour ago, jsharr said:

Are you talking regionally or nationally?

Housing starts are slightly down and unemployment is slightly down as well nationally.

I could see regionally how housing would be down and unemployment up on the West coast due to all the fires.

The fires, as damaging as they were, affected certain communities and their overall impact to the region as a whole is minimal.  

We are seeing more for sale signs posted in our neighborhood, I think that's due to people actually having to wait for buyers.  Prices haven't dropped yet but I'm sure they will.  Our local unemployment is still under 3% but we historically are lower than average.

We are in good shape assuming neither of us lose our job.  We carry little debt outside of our mortgage and haven't leveraged equity.  We have several months salary in savings and with our current financial situation are able to save for the future and continue a positive trend as we head into retirement age.

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5 minutes ago, Dirtyhip said:

Did you read that article?

Some cherry picked quotes

The sudden increase in claims seems unusual and is unlikely to last.

Despite some high-profile announcements of layoffs at storied companies such as General Motors GM, -0.55% the U.S. unemployment rate sits at a 48-year low. Job openings are also near a record high.

New jobless claims actually fell last week if the government’s seasonal adjustments are stripped out. Raw claims declined by 8,651 to 217,834, a very low number that reflects an ultra-strong labor market.

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4 minutes ago, Dirtyhip said:

The article stated that there is some quirkiness due to Thanksgiving being early this year....  Definately going the wrong way but it didn't read as a doom & gloom report either.

Interesting to see how this plays out.  My firm has already had massive layoffs due to housing market slow downs and forecasts of a slow Q1.

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Just now, ChrisL said:

The article stated that there is some quirkiness due to Thanksgiving being early this year....  Definately going the wrong way but it didn't read as a doom & gloom report either.

Interesting to see how this plays out.  My firm has already had massive layoffs due to housing market slow downs and forecasts of a slow Q1.

We have had some closures around here of small businesses and have heard of some layoffs in the housing industry.  We are a smaller community and employment here is often challenging.

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1 hour ago, bikeman564™ said:

I'm a party of one w/ no pension. And not all pensions are safe either, or SS for that matter.

Nothing’s safe, how much did you lose on those “safe” investments in mutual funds during the crash? I lost half.

1 hour ago, Dirtyhip said:

All due respect, but not all of us have a nice pension to fall back on when we are older.  Many of us have to plan to care for ourselves.  It is not prudent for me to stop doing that planning and preparation.  

You stopped working and are able to have funds rolling in from soc security and pension.  Soc Security may have problems as well.  This is bleak future for those that have not prepared.

And you are retiring at what age? I worked until I was almost 67. I highly doubt that I will ever come close to drawing out half of what I paid in working fifty years.

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Just now, Dirtyhip said:

We have had some closures around here of small businesses and have heard of some layoffs in the housing industry.  We are a smaller community and employment here is often challenging.

The internet will kill Mom and Pop business.   One of our best LBS, Plano Cycling and Fitness just announced they are closing.  I have shopped with either them or Richardson Bike Mart for decades.

People now use brick and mortar stores as fitting and testing rooms and then go and order online.  Bike sales were not off all that much, but parts, service, clothing and accessory sales were.

 

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It depends on who you talk to around here. The distance between the haves and have nots is growing. While unemployment IS down, many are not making anywhere near what they were making in the past. Plus most had to go into debt to finally replace their long overdue dying vehicles to drive further to get to those new lower paying jobs, leaving them only a paycheck or two away from being on the street. But the numbers do sound so good on the news...... 

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1 minute ago, team scooter said:

It depends on who you talk to around here. The distance between the haves and have nots is growing. While unemployment IS down, many are not making anywhere near what they were making in the past. Plus most had to go into debt to finally replace their long overdue dying vehicles to drive further to get to those new lower paying jobs, leaving them only a paycheck or two away from being on the street. But the numbers do sound so good on the news...... 

I fear this is true for more than we know.  We need to kill the internet and get back to business as we knew it for years.  

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Just now, Longjohn said:

Nothing’s safe, how much did you lose on those “safe” investments in mutual funds during the crash? I lost half.

And you are retiring at what age? I worked until I was almost 67. I highly doubt that I will ever come close to drawing out half of what I paid in working fifty years.

If you stayed in, they came right back up in a short while.  

Full time, I hope to stop around 55 or 56.  I am probably needing to work a little until at least 59.  My situation is unique, as I didn't have kids like most.  This allowed us to save earlier and more than most.  Also, we have low expenses (live in a tiny home, ride bikes mostly for transpo, and don't torch money like I see many doing).  Cause and effect of choices.  

I just thought the biblical quote in this thread had nothing to do with the subject at hand. 

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4 minutes ago, Dirtyhip said:

If you stayed in, they came right back up in a short while.  

Full time, I hope to stop around 55 or 56.  I am probably needing to work a little until at least 59.  My situation is unique, as I didn't have kids like most.  This allowed us to save earlier and more than most.  Also, we have low expenses (live in a tiny home, ride bikes mostly for transpo, and don't torch money like I see many doing).  Cause and effect of choices.  

I just thought the biblical quote in this thread had nothing to do with the subject at hand. 

They didn’t come right back up on mutual funds. When it’s gone, it’s gone. I should have just bought stock then that would be true.

The quote was referring to where I invest my money. If you saw the percentage of my income that goes to charitable giving. And that is just the money that is recorded on recognized charities. We also give money and resources to people that are not tax deductible. And it’s not just money, it’s investing in lives. 

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I've put most of my investments in conservative funds with a lot of it in bonds. I also have a good amount of cash readily available. I plan on retiring in June 2020 and putting in the max into my 401k and IRA.

I also work in a growth industry, government, so the chance of getting laid off is slim even though I'm a contractor.

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3 hours ago, az_cyclist said:

 The longer the recovery, the closer we get to another recession.  whether it will be sudden, as in the S&L crisis in the 80s, or the housing crisis in 2007, or a more gradual slow down, who knows.

It'll happen, you watch.  Obama is gonna take your guns and all hell is going to break loose.

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42 minutes ago, Randomguy said:

I would like a gun that shoots hockey pucks.  That would scare people to death!

I feel like I remember an old Peanuts animated cartoon, in which Snoopy was going off on some manner of special mission.  Charlie Brown said something like "then you're going to need the most dangerous weapon known to man", dug around in the closet and produced a hockey stick. :D  Can't find any clip or script though.  It's not one of the regular, popular ones.

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24 minutes ago, Longjohn said:

A flare gun works good at that.

Back in the day we simulated an RPG attack with flares.  Caught the bunker on fire and took the objective. But I also pissed off the Commander but good.  They wouldn't let me be OPFOR lead anymore after that!

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Unlike Dirtyhip, I don't think my situation is unusual...I also don't have children.... and by sheer coincidence, most of my long-term female friends (known them since our early 20's) don't have children either. All of these friends also went to university/college, so they had to handle most of their education costs.  They, like myself, are amazed of recent, debt-ridden graduates taking European trips.  Good friends were like me:  foreign travel only occurred several years after working post-university.

This indicates we didn't slough off our parents for those niceties. Myself and friends each saved our money and not put ourselves so heavily in debt young in life. (this excludes the biggie, a home mortgage).   I think there is a distinct generational differences of what kids do now BEFORE they landed full time jobs after college/university.  Then on top of all that, parents paid heavily for their education. So someone ends up a lot less $$$$$, either the parents or new graduating kid.

Maybe I started close friendships as a young innocent woman at that time, by sheer coincidence with  people who were fiscally conservative/abit more careful.  Truly, this has been coincidence.  

.

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The local economy already is falling in Alberta and struggling with oil-energy industry turndown in past 2.5 years.  I'm glad our city voted NO majority against the Winter Olympics bid.

Our downtown core is 25% empty unleased commercial / office space.  

Wierdly new housing starts are still ploughing onward in our city. However some developers have left their plots vacant, waiting for our economy to recover.  They will have to wait another few years.  What might be happening on the edges of the market is investors are coming to our city to buy homes that are cheaper than Vancouver (1 of the highest prices in North America) and Toronto.

 

 

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14 minutes ago, shootingstar said:

Unlike Dirtyhip, I don't think my situation is unusual...I also don't have children.... and by sheer coincidence, most of my long-term female friends (known them since early 20's) don't have children either. All of these friends also went to university/college, so they had to handle most of their education costs.  They, like myself, are amazed of recent, debt-ridden graduates taking European trips.  Good friends were like me:  foreign travel only occurred several years after working post-university.

This indicates we didn't slough off our parents for those niceties. Myself and friends each saved our money and not put ourselves so heavily in debt young in life. (this excludes the biggie, a home mortgage).   I think there is a distinct generational differences of what kids do now BEFORE they landed full time jobs after college/university.  Then on top of all that, parents paid heavily for their education. So someone ends up a lot less $$$$$, either the parents or new graduating kid.

Maybe I started close friendships as a young innocent woman at that time, by sheer coincidence with  people who were fiscally conservative/abit more careful.  Truly, this has been coincidence.  

.

I got the triple whammy with tuition, paid my own way through college, then paid for my wife's and now paying for my kids....  

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22 minutes ago, ChrisL said:

I got the triple whammy with tuition, paid my own way through college, then paid for my wife's and now paying for my kids....  

I sympathize, Chris.  Just yesterday, a single woman with no children at all, said me:  "I have to work because I don't have a partner re pension,etc.".  

Well, frankly my partner has had to pay child custody for awhile and other stuff for his adult children. So her assumption that having a partner makes it more cushier was abit of a red herring.  I find it abit unusual that she complained because she's had decent paying jobs all along. It's not as if she works in retail/low paying service jobs. 

I'm certain my single sister with no children, who works as a receptionists/admissions clerk at a hospital (which isn't great pay) still considers herself financially ok.  I find it abit weird single, child-free people complain how hard it is financially.....sure it can be.  But at least, I don't have to deal with pleading kids for money or boom-rang adult kids who move back to live with parents.

Or deal with kids with health care problems and costs... in addition to one's own.

 

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