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5 SIMPLE GRAPHS PROVING THIS IS NOT LIKE THE LAST TIME
With all of the volatility in the stock market and uncertainty about COVID-19, some are concerned we may be headed for another housing crash like the one we experienced from 2006–2008. The feeling is understandable. Ali Wolf, Director of Economic Research at the real estate consulting firm Meyers Research, addressed this point in a recent interview: “With people having PTSD from the last time, they’re still afraid of buying at the wrong time.” Many reasons, however, indicate this real estate market is nothing like 2008. Here are five visuals to show the dramatic differences. 1. Mortgage standards are nothing like they were back then. During the housing bubble, it was difficult NOT to get a mortgage. Today, it is tough to qualify. The Mortgage Bankers’ Association releases a Mortgage Credit Availability Index which is “a summary measure which indicates the availability of mortgage credit at a point in time.”The higher the index, the easier it is to get a mortgage. As shown below, during the housing bubble, the index skyrocketed. Currently, the index shows how getting a mortgage is even more difficult than it was before the bubble.
There’s a stark difference between these two periods of time. Normal appreciation is 3.6%, so while current appreciation is higher than the historic norm, it’s certainly not accelerating beyond control as it did in the early 2000s. 3. We don’t have a surplus of homes on the market. We have a shortage. The months’ supply of inventory needed to sustain a normal real estate market is approximately six months. Anything more than that is an overabundance and will causes prices to depreciate. Anything less than that is a shortage and will lead to continued appreciation. As the next graph shows, there were too many homes for sale in 2007, and that caused prices to tumble. Today, there’s a shortage of inventory which is causing an acceleration in home values.
2. Prices are not soaring out of control. To the top right is a graph showing annual house appreciation over the past six years compared to the six years leading up to the height of the housing bubble. Though price appreciation has been quite strong recently, it is nowhere near the rise in prices that preceded the crash.
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If your child is between 3–5 years old, you’ve probably noticed that they’re becoming a lot more talkative. By the time children are 4, they can usually speak in 5–8-word sentences. That makes this age range the perfect time to get your child interested in reading. However, this can raise a lot of questions. For starters, the question of how to get your child interested in reading is almost more important than when you do it. You may wonder how much time you should spend reading with them, how intensive reading time should be, and if you should make everything involving words and letters into a reading lesson. While the answers to these questions will vary from child to child, there’s one goal that every parent should strive for when teaching their child to read: Above all, help them enjoy it. When your child starts kindergarten, learning to read will be a part of the curriculum. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to teach them to read earlier, though. If your child loves to read, it can make their learning experience much more enjoyable. WHEN SHOULD YOU TEACH YOUR CHILD TO READ? And How Should You Do It?
Have you ever walked through a park and seen a plastic bottle or wrapper lying on the ground? If so, did you pick it up and properly dispose of it? You might not have realized it, but in that moment, you took a small step toward keeping your community — and, by extension, America — beautiful! April is Keep America Beautiful Month, and folks who celebrate aim to help each community in every state stay clean and green. Created by the nonprofit organization Keep America Beautiful, this holiday offers a perfect opportunity to roll up your sleeves and work to better the place you live in. Here are three ways to show your appreciation for a green America this month. Take action online. With the current COVID-19 pandemic sweeping the world, it might be difficult to get outside and participate in a few community cleanup programs. But that doesn’t mean the public still can’t participate in Keep America Beautiful Month. April 22 marks the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, and to celebrate, Earth Day Network is providing digital events for everyone around the world to take part in. Follow Earth Day Network’s social media accounts and stay updated on efforts to keep the Earth green or participate in an event yourself! For more information, visit EarthDay.org. Start plogging. If you’re passionate about staying active and cleaning up your neighborhood, then this is the perfect activity for you! Plogging combines jogging and picking up litter, which takes care of your health and keeps your community clean. Anybody can do it: Just throw on your running shoes, grab a bag, head out the door, and pick up any stray bits of trash you see on your morning jog or evening walk. Improve recycling through education. An important goal during Keep America Beautiful Month is to spread awareness about recycling. There are various ways to educate those around you about recycling and encourage them to do their part. At work, for example, you can volunteer to lead a recycling initiative by printing off guides and fostering discussions on why recycling is so essential. At home, you can make a commitment with your family to fulfill the three R’s of recycling: reduce, reuse, recycle. DO YOUR PART TO KEEP AMERICA BEAUTIFUL AND MAINTAIN GREEN LIVING SPACES FOR EVERYONE
There are plenty of ways to help your child enjoy reading from an early age. One is to simply read to them and make storytime fun. If the pig goes oink or the mailman
has a funny, nasally voice, bring those features to life. You can also have your kids help you with daily tasks that require reading, like making a
to-do list or shopping at the grocery store. When they’re helping you and having fun, it won’t feel like learning at all!
Finally, the best way to make reading enjoyable
for your children is to enjoy it yourself. Your kids watch what you do, and if they see you enjoying a good book, they’ll want to read even more. Reading opens up the world to them, and with your help, nothing will dull their
To participate in Keep America Beautiful Month, visit at KAB.org today!
love of learning.
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... continued from Cover
4. Houses became too expensive to buy. The affordability formula has three components: the price of the home, the wages earned by the purchaser, and the mortgage rate available at the time. Fourteen years ago, prices were high, wages were low, and mortgage rates were over 6%. Today, prices are still high. Wages, however, have increased, and the mortgage rate is about 3.5%. That means the average family pays less of their monthly income toward their mortgage payment than they did back then. Here’s a graph showing that difference:
During the crash, home values began to fall, and sellers found themselves in a negative equity situation (where the amount of the mortgage they owned was greater than the value of their home). Some decided to walk away from their homes, and that led to a rash of distressed property listings (foreclosures and short sales), which sold at huge discounts, thus lowering the value of other homes in the area. That can’t happen today.
Bottom Line If you’re concerned that we’re making the same mistakes that led to the housing crash, take a look at the charts and graphs above to help alleviate your fears.
5. People are equity rich, not tapped out. In the run-up to the housing bubble, homeowners were using their homes as a personal ATMmachine. Many immediately withdrew their equity once it built up, and they learned their lesson in the process. Prices have risen nicely over the last few years, leading to over 50% of homes in the country having greater than 50% equity. But owners have not been tapping into it like the last time. To the right is a table comparing the equity withdrawal over the last three years compared to 2005, 2006, and 2007. Homeowners have cashed out over $500 billion dollars less than before:
—Drew Taylor (205) 283-1602 email@example.com
EASY DEVILED EGGS
TAKE A BREAK
Inspired by TasteOfHome.com
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 tsp ground mustard
2 tbsp milk
Salt, paprika, garlic powder, and pepper, to taste
1 tsp dried parsley flakes
12 large eggs, hard-boiled
1/2 tsp dill weed
Fresh parsley, minced, and paprika for garnish
1/2 tsp fresh chives, minced
In a large bowl, combine mayonnaise, milk, parsley flakes, dill, chives, mustard, salt, paprika, garlic powder, and pepper. Mix well and set aside. Cut eggs lengthwise and remove yolks carefully to preserve egg whites.
Mix mashed yolks with mayonnaise mixture. Spoon or pipe the mixture back into the egg whites. Garnish with fresh parsley and paprika. Refrigerate before serving.
Solution on Page 4
In a small bowl, mash yolks.
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5 Simple Graphs Proving This Is NOT Like the Last Time Keep America Beautiful Fostering a Love of Reading in Your Child
Easy Deviled Eggs
Did You Spot These Movie Easter Eggs?
DID YOU SEE IT? 3 of Hollywood’s Best Movie Easter Eggs
This April, many kids will search excitedly for Easter eggs, but aside from the holiday treat, the term “Easter egg” has a fun alternate meaning when it comes to media. In this context, an Easter egg refers to a hidden surprise or message, and people often enjoy trying to find as many as they can. This spring, turn on some of these classic movies and see if you can spot a few of Hollywood’s Easter eggs yourself.
ocean. Their destination is unknown, and sadly, a treacherous storm sinks their ship. Three years later, their eldest daughter, Elsa, is coronated, and guests arrive at the castle. If viewers scan the crowd of visitors, they will see Flynn and Rapunzel from the 2010 Disney movie “Tangled.” (Notice the time difference?) The theory, confirmed by filmmakers, is that Elsa and Anna’s parents were traveling to Flynn and Rapunzel’s wedding. The connections continue with claims that the shipwreck in “The Little Mermaid” was their ship, and some even think that Tarzan’s parents were actually Anna and Elsa’s parents, who survived the wreck.
In 2002, “Catch Me If You Can,” starring Tom Hanks and Leonardo DiCaprio, created just that. The movie follows the life of Abagnale, who briefly appears in the movie himself to arrest DiCaprio, who plays a young Abagnale. Today, Abagnale serves as a security consultant and teaches courses for the FBI.
Indiana Jones and Han Solo Teaming Up
No movie franchises are as prolific as George Lucas’ “Star Wars” and “Indiana Jones,” but they also share another Hollywood connection. Both series feature Harrison Ford, who plays Indiana Jones and Han Solo, and the franchises make references to each other, including hieroglyphics in “Indiana Jones” that feature R2-D2, C-3PO, and Princess Leia, as well as a club named Club Obi Wan. Though “The Empire Strikes Back”was filmed before “Indiana Jones,” Lucas had Ford in mind for his next great story and gave Han Solo a bullwhip in reference to Indy’s famous go-to tool.
Disney Royalty’s Family Tree
Frank Abagnale Arresting ‘Himself’
At the beginning of Disney’s “Frozen,” released in 2013, Elsa and
At 15 years old, Frank Abagnale Jr. started his career as one of the U.S.’s most prolific con artists. Abagnale scammed the government out of money, impersonated pilots and doctors, and swindled banks, making his story seem like a Hollywood plot.
Anna’s parents leave
to journey across the
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