Mindconnection eNL, 2002-08-10
In this issue:
1. Featured product
Check out our Time Management course. Unlike most time management courses that prescribe getting a complete personality change, a bionic implant, and an influx of $100,000 seed money, this course actually provides useful information.
Find it here at: http://www.mindconnection.com/Merchant2/merchant.mv
2. Brainpower tip
Sleep. The final frontier. These are the voyages of the Starship Shuteye. Her five year mission....
By some estimates, 90% of Americans are sleep-deprived. The Sleep Institute has done loads of research into this. You can find books and tapes on sleeping at your local library. Here's a quick test. How long does it take you to fall asleep? A few minutes? Half an hour? Well, if you fall asleep within 20 minutes of going to bed or need an alarm clock to wake you up, you are sleep-deprived. That means your brain isn't hitting on all eight cylinders. To cure this, you need to actively work on wiping out your sleep debt. That's an involved topic--something I've presented on. I'm thinking about offering a course on this for sale via Mindconnection. Would any of you readers be interested in getting this course at no charge, if you just agree to provide me with some feedback (how much and what would be entirely up to you)? Let me know.
3. Finance tips
I recently refinanced my home mortgage from 6.98% to 5 and a quarter percent. I plan to pay this off by the end of this decade.
For the mathematically-challenged among us, that would be the year 2010, not 2009. We are in the second year of this millennium/century/decade, not the third--just look at your check book, and see what the last check ends in (a zero), or count 10 rocks in any patch of dirt and ask someone what the right-hand digit is in the number for that 10th rock. Ah, but I digress. Sort of. Math is important to finance.
Why should you care what I am doing with my refi, and why should you consider one of your own? If you "own" a house, this topic may well define your financial future. Notice I put "own" in quotes. Stop paying your property taxes, and you'll see who actually owns your house. It aint you.
If you rent from someone other than the government (e.g., you make a rental payment rather than a mortgage and property tax payment or just a property tax payment), this is also important because you may well be forced to "buy" a home rather than rent. And you'll need things in place to do that.
OK, what the heck am I talking about? In a word, demographics. I first learned about this back in the mid-1980s. The front edge of the babyboomer population swell, a report said then, will cause a housing price collapse in 2008. That report has been corroborated by other reports in the ensuing years. Unfortunately, those reports are all a bit off. Because of rampant consumerism, a total lack of corporate governance, and eight years of complete insanity in the White House, this housing problem is already on the horizon, and in some cases, here. Housing problem?
Yes. The early babyboomers are not going to want to stay in their 4,000 square foot "cleaning day from hell" homes after retirement. And, predictably, many of these homes are on the market but not able to be sold. As more folks move into condos and apartments, home values will drop. Just as our grossly overvalued stock market has been dropping and still could drop another 66% before the numbers make sense (going by P/E ratios), home prices will return from their speculative highs to something more sobering.
The big rub? Reverse equity. If you have less than 80% equity in your home now, you should look at moving into a smaller, less expensive home. Do that, or get part-time income to pay down that debt. You may sell assets, cut costs, whatever. But, if you are at less than 80% equity you are in a very precarious position. Why 80% and not 75% or 90%? Well, things tend to follow the Pareto Principle, and that's the 80/20 principle. Plus, it just sounds right. But, the actual figure could be 50%. Who knows? Certainly, reigning in expenses and reducing debt is the only sensible strategy when market valuations will greatly reduce the asset values upon which your loans are contingent.
People who have the 105% loans will lose their homes and still owe more than they paid for them. Some folks are postulating this is economic Darwinism, others are postulating it's a land grab like that done to the farmers. I say, it just is. Deal with it. The only way to deal with it is to prepare, by reducing your debt exposure.
4. Health tip
Last week, my grocery bill was $16.82. No, I don't eat out (except for business purposes). What I do have is a garden, and it's quite bountiful because I work very hard at building the soil. It feeds me, with plenty left over for my neighbors and some critters. Pesticides? The four flocks of birds that call my yard home help with that, as does my resident toad. The food is incredibly nutrient rich. Contrast that to the typical commercial produce, which is grown in depleted soil, sprayed with God only knows what, and shipped across thousands of miles during which time they lose much of their nutritious value.
Don't forget to check out our various categories of nutritional supplements
Hey, this is for your benefit! Do you think I'm saying this just for my health? <grin>
5. Fitness tip
Stairs or elevator? 'nuff said.
6. Thought for the Day
With so many bad things going on, it can make a big difference just to smile at someone. It can make a bigger difference to compliment that person on some specific statement or behavior. Just the act of spreading cheer is good for you, but other benefits eventually make themselves known. Be thoughtful!
Wishing you the best,
AuthorshipThe views expressed in this e-newsletter are generally not shared by criminals, zombies, or brainwashed individuals.
Except where noted, this e-newsletter is entirely the work of Mark Lamendola. Anything presented as fact can be independently verified. Often, sources are given; but where not given, they are readily available to anyone who makes the effort.
Mark provides information from either research or his own areas of established expertise. Sometimes, what appears to be a personal opinion is the only possibility when applying sound logic--reason it out before judging! (That said, some personal opinions do appear on occasion).
The purpose of this publication is to inform and empower its readers (and save you money!).
Personal note from Mark: I value each and every one of you, and I hope that shows in the diligent effort I put into writing this e-newsletter. Thank you for being a faithful reader.
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