News

Landmark Links August 24th – Hoarder Nation

 

Must Read: Cheap and quick online shopping is turning America into a nation of hoarders and that’s not going to change any time soon.  I can’t imagine a more bullish sign for the self storage industry.

Economy

Held Back: Student loan debt is starting to bite the economy as money used to pay debt service impairs borrowers’ ability to spend and invest elsewhere.

Hanging Around: Conventional wisdom would have you believe that bank teller is a dying job.  However, far from being let go, tellers are often getting raises as the job evolves from simply cashing checks and providing balances to full service fin-tech consultant.

Commercial

Downstream: Private equity investors are increasingly turning to lending as a way to mitigate risk late in the cycle.

Cut off: Developers are having to wean themselves off of Chinese EB-5 funding as the visa wait-list balloons.

Confusing: The new federal Opportunity Zone program sounds incredibly attractive but a lack of detailed guidance is causing headaches for investors and developers.

Residential

Self Sorting: America’s rich are increasingly moving towards the coasts (and some mountain areas) while the poor move inland.  Remember this the next time that you read about how fewer than 1 in five residents can afford a home in the Bay Area (one of many regional examples of un-affordability).  If housing were a closed system, the idea that the vast majority of residents can’t afford to live there on its own would cause a price correction.  Instead, richer people keep moving in and poorer people keep moving out which is driving the cost of living sky high.

Common Ground: Nothing unites liberal Democrats and conservative Republicans quite like trying to stop new development near where they live.

The Struggle is Real: The growing pains being experienced by Silicon Valley construction start-up Katerra are a perfect example of why it’s so difficult to innovate in the world of construction.

Pairing Up: The number of Baby Boomers living with roommates is on the rise as high housing costs and a dearth of retirement savings take their toll.

Profiles

Sign of the Times: Posting Instagram sponsored content is the new summer job for entrepreneurial teens.  The quote below, in particular is fascinating.  Welcome to 2018:

With “jobs you need to do a lot of training,” says Lucy, a 13-year-old in Pennsylvania who asked to be referred to by a pseudonym. “Then you have to, like, physically go out and do the job for hours a day. Doing this, you can make one simple post, which doesn’t take a while. That single post can earn you, like, $50.”

This Was Inevitable: Locals in Los Angeles have begun vandalizing the pay-by-the-mile electric scooters that they feel are clogging boardwalks and sidewalks.

Chart of the Day

Housing starts remain low by any measure but look even worse when number of households is taken into account.

Starts per household

WTF

He Who Smelt It: An obese security guard going by the pseudonym Paul Flart lost his job when his employer discovered a viral video of him farting at work on Youtube.  In related news, if anyone wants to start a GoFundMe for Mr. Flart, count me in.

Please Make It Stop: Nabisco caved to the cranks and killjoys at PETA and re-designed the iconic Animal Crackers box so that the circus animals are no longer in a cage because vegans.

Job of the Day: You can make $185k a year cleaning up human feces in San Francisco.  (h/t Steve Sims) Downside – it probably is still not enough to actually afford to live in San Francisco.

Landmark Links – A candid look at the economy, real estate, and other things sometimes related.

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