Walkable Areas Are Getting More Competition

Older Americans are placing a higher value on living in walkable urban centers, according to a new survey of 1,000 respondents nationwide about their living preferences

A majority of respondents surveyed by A Place for Mom, a national referral service, said it was “very important” or “somewhat important” to live in a walkable neighborhood. They also sought neighborhoods with low crime and those that are close to family.

“It’s time to abandon the idea that only millennials and Generation X care about walkability and the services available in dense urban neighborhoods,” says Charlie Severn, head of marketing at A Place for Mom. “These results show a growing set of senior housing consumers also find these neighborhoods desirable.

The survey authors say it’s important for developers to consider creating multigenerational communities in suburban centers that place an emphasis on walkability. Walkability ranked high regardless of income level in the survey. Walkability ranked highest for those under 70 years old who were seeking senior apartments.

Source: “Seniors Want Walkability Too, Survey Says,” Curbed.com (July 25, 2017)

Study: Home Ownership Linked to Happiness

Home ownership can lead to higher levels of well-being, according to data from the OECD Better Life Index, which gauges the quality of life worldwide by factoring in such things like housing, jobs, civic engagement, health and safety.

The heightened sense of happiness that comes from home ownership may be more than just getting a new home but more closely tied to the basic need for shelter, says Aida Caldera Sanchez and Caroline Tassot, authors of an analysis about the index. Also, home ownership can lead to status and independence – qualities that often are linked to happiness, their analysis shows.

On the well-being index, housing outperformed all the all other indicators monitored – like education, safety, and environment – by the highest amount in the Midwest, with 75 percent of the states ranking housing as most important to happiness. In the South, housing tops all other indicators in 70.6 percent of the states, and in the West housing was tops in only 15 percent of the states compared to the other indicators.

View how housing stacks up in your area at the OCED Regional Well-being website.

Source: OCED Regional Well-being and “Homeownership Linked to Happiness,” RISMedia (May 7, 2015)

Second Recession Fears Ease?

Many home buyers have been reluctant in recent weeks to move forward on home purchases due to fears that the country could be heading to a double-dip recession, but new data suggests they have nothing to fear.

The job picture seems to be improving, according to new economic data. For example, a report from ADP, a payroll processing company, showed that private employers had added 91,000 new jobs in August–after expanding by 114,000 in July. Also, unemployment rates were lower in July than a year earlier in 257 of the 372 metro areas, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The government’s labor market report, coming on Friday, also is expected to show a modest increase in employment.

What’s more, the number of planned layoffs at companies, which has been rising for the last three months, curtailed in August. 

“The labor market is soft but not falling apart,” says Joel L. Naroff, chief economist at Naroff Economic Advisors in Holland, Pa. “The economy is not on the verge of a recession.”

Also, economic data pointed to a strong rebound in demand for manufactured goods in July, particularly for cars. Orders for motor vehicles posted their largest gain since 2003.  

Source: “Range of Data Calms Fear of a Return to a Recession,” Reuters (Sept. 1, 2011) 

Other articles relating to the Sacramento and Placerville, California regions at: www.sierraproperties.com

Reeling from “California Unemployment”

Unemployment over the past year has lingered at a higher percentage of the labor force than at any time in recent history, following the sharpest spike in unemployment since the Great Depression. Expect our recovery to be correspondingly longer than the recessions of the past 35 years: 

  • The most recent peak month for unemployment was January, 2010, when 2,348,700 people were registered as unemployed in California, with an Unemployment rate of 13%. These unemployment numbers exclude the constantly increasing pool of individuals that have dropped out of the labor force entirely, either for retirement or because there is simply no work available.
  • The Labor Force Participation (LFP) Rate tracks the percentage of the state population that is actively working or looking for work. This rate has undergone a nearly constant decline since the start of the recession. [For more on LFP Rates, see first tuesday’s November 2010 article, The Demographics Forging California’s Real Estate Market (Part II)]
  • 46.5% of those unemployed have been without work for 27 weeks or more.

For more employment information, see first tuesday’s Market Chart, Jobs Move Real Estate 

Portion of article by Bradley Markano http://firsttuesdayjournal.com/reeling-from-california-unemployment/

Other articles relating to the Sacramento and Placerville, California regions at: www.sierraproperties.com

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