Keep Our Service Free-Donate

Thursday, February 21, 2019

PM's Self Reliance Tools: A positive jobs report is only one part of the pic...

PM's Self Reliance Tools: A positive jobs report is only one part of the pic...: Poor Man Survival Self Reliance tools for independent minded people… www.poormansurvivor.net   ISSN 2161-5543 A Digest of...

A positive jobs report is only one part of the picture


Poor Man Survival

Self Reliance tools for independent minded people…


 

ISSN 2161-5543

A Digest of Urban Survival Resources

 


A positive jobs report is only one part of the picture.


On January 4, the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics released its December employment figures, causing much rejoicing in America. A total of 312,000 new jobs were created, far surpassing the estimated 176,000 jobs. Wages were found to have grown 3.2 percent over the same time last year, again beating the 3 percent increase economists predicted. That year-over-year jump tied with October for the best month since April 2009.

This was positive news for the U.S. economy, coming amid growing concerns of a global recession setting in. After a week of terrible losses, new life surged into the stock markets. Many declared that the U.S. could push aside fears of a recession.

But while the job numbers were very favorable, they are only one part of the economic picture. Add a few more pieces to the puzzle, and the real picture of America’s economy appears.

A Few More Puzzle Pieces


Here is the first piece: One underreported fact from the December job report was who is being hired. The majority were workers 55 years and older. In contrast, the number of people in the prime age group (ages 25-54) decreased by 11,000. This says a lot about America’s financial situation. More and more Americans of retirement age are returning to the workforce, most likely because they can’t afford to retire. This also explains why wages increased more than expected.

Those of retirement age lack sufficient savings for retirement, and younger Americans are not saving for retirement. Data released last year by the Federal Reserve found that 4 in 10 adults couldn’t cover an unexpected expense of $400, and would have to go into debt or sell something to cover the cost. While this is an improvement from 2013, when 50 percent of adults couldn’t spare $400, it still shows how unprepared people are for even a small financial hardship. The most recent study on the issue found that 78 percent of Americans live paycheck to paycheck, up from 75 percent the previous year.

Here is the next puzzle piece: Not only are Americans without savings, they are maxed out on debts they cannot pay. The same Federal Reserve report found that more than one fifth of adults are unable to fully pay all their current month’s bills, which means they are stuck in an ever worsening debt trap. Consumer debt in the U.S. continues to smash records. Credit card debt, along with student and auto loans, are at all-time highs.

This is a problem from the personal level all the way to the federal level. In 2018 the U.S. government added an additional $1 trillion to the national debt, bringing the total to nearly $22 trillion.

This has some people worried, like Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell, who said the government will soon have “no choice” but to face this issue. But most, including President Donald Trump, seem unconcerned. On January 8, he tweeted that he longed for interest rates to return to zero percent so he could have something to “play with,” like the last administration had, implying that he would add even more to the debt.

House Democrats also appear unconcerned with reining in spending. Now that they control the House, one of the first things they did was vote to revive the “Gephardt Rule.” This rule makes debt-ceiling increases automatic each time Congress passes a budget that would blow through the debt limit. But they have made the rule even worse.

As Conservative Review explained, “Obviously, Republicans control the Senate and are unlikely to cooperate with a Democrat-passed budget resolution from the House, so any Democrat budget will not become law under a concurrent resolution. To that end, for the first time in congressional history, Democrats are deeming just the House-passed resolution (without the Senate) as if the debt ceiling law was suspended for that chamber, thereby shielding their members from taking a separate vote” (January 3).

Thus, whatever budget the House approves can exceed the debt limit. It doesn’t need the Senate’s approval. With the new rules, the government need not worry about a balanced budget or having to fight to raise the debt ceiling to cover ballooning expenditures. There’s nothing to hold the government accountable for its spending. It can run up the debt as much as it wants.

Snapshots From Around the Globe


When you put these pieces together, a clearer picture emerges. Yes, jobs are being created, but that in itself doesn’t prove the nation’s financial soundness. What gets reported in the news is just a veneer of prosperity covering up a panoply of financial problems. The majority of Americans are unprepared for even a small economic crisis. The federal government isn’t ready either. The reality is that America’s economic dominance is waning, and quickly.

Consider these stories, all of which broke in the second week of January:

  • A study by the Standard Chartered Bank said that China is likely to become the world’s biggest economy sometime next year, surpassing the U.S. China is already the largest economy by some measures, but now it is ready to surpass the U.S. in all parameters. By 2030, it expects America to fall to third, with India hurdling into second place.
  • The Bank of England’s governor, Mark Carney, shook the financial world by stating that the U.S. dollar’s status as the world’s reserve currency was about to change. He stated, “[U]ltimately we will have reserve currencies other than the U.S. dollar.” He pointed to the Chinese yuan as an alternative. While nations that could be considered enemies of the U.S. have worked to discredit the dollar, it is surprising for a U.S. ally to question its hegemony.
  • Russia, which discloses financial data with a six-month lag, announced that in the second quarter of 2018 it had dumped $101 billion in U.S. holdings, exchanging it for euros and yuan. Fifteen percent of Russia’s total holdings are now in Chinese yuan, up from 5 percent at the end of the first quarter. This puts Russia’s yuan share at about 10 times the average for global central banks. Its total holdings of the currency account for about a quarter of the world’s reserves in yuan, according to International Monetary Fund data.
  • At the end of December, China increased its gold holdings for the first time in two years, adding 1,853 metric tons. China is just the latest nation to begin hoarding gold. Last year, Hungary increased its gold reserves by 1,000 percent, while Poland made its biggest gold purchase in over 20 years, raising its holdings to a 35-year high.

Add these pieces to the puzzle, and a more serious picture emerges. The strength of the dollar is being questioned by America’s allies, while hostile nations are pivoting to the yuan. Meanwhile, nations are hedging their central banks with gold, a tangible asset. The U.S. dollar isn’t backed by gold. So why would these nations increase their holdings unless the see a need to return to the gold standard? The only reason for that would be if the dollar collapsed.

Look at the Cause


While the markets celebrated the December jobs report, a much bigger picture needs to be examined. America’s economy is not flourishing. In fact, it is in decline and under assault.

What is the cause of all this economic trouble? Is it just poor fiscal policies in Washington? Or are there deeper issues?

Historian Niall Ferguson described the phenomenon of our irrational attitude toward living within our means and rational thinking in this week’s Sunday Times, writing, “We no longer live in a democracy. We live in an ‘emocracy,’ where emotions rather than majorities rule and feelings matter more than reason. The stronger your feelings—the better you are at working yourself into a fit of indignation—the more influence you have.

Final Thoughts…

For the past several months, the housing market has been in steep decline with sales cratering in December by 10.3 percent-Housing prices are falling in many areas of the country but lag (as they tend to do) far behind the more immediate indicator of sales. The Fed's increasing interest rates have translated to higher mortgage rates across the board. Without low interest rates corporate buyers are leaving the market, resting the fate of housing on normal consumers who clearly do not have the capital or credit.

Auto sales have been dismal, posting declines through the end of 2018 into early 2019, with 2019 expected to be the worst year overall. Once again, with rising interest rates, major purchases have become less appealing to the average consumer.

Retail sales have now posted the worst December numbers since 2005. Retail sales are often presented by the mainstream media as the end all argument for economic recovery. Yet they fail to mention the problem of consumer credit, which has ballooned over the past several years to record highs. In our unstable economic environment, low interest rates fuel debt, debt fuels credit and credit (instead of savings) fuels consumer purchases. Without low interest rates, the entire house of cards comes tumbling down.

I also find it interesting that while retail sales are crumbling, consumer debt continues to rise. If consumers are taking on more debt, where is that money going if not into purchases? My suspicion is that new debt is being taken on in order to pay off old debts.
 
 
Gallup Poll-Dec ‘18
“Americans were more likely to cite the government as the most important problem facing the US than any other issue.”
One of five Americans [19%] now say some aspect of the federal government is the top problem facing the US – however, only 3% named gun control or guns!
When I was a volunteer for the SBA and speaker and board member for the Council of Smaller Enterprises [COSE] government [at all levels] was named as the number one obstacle for entrepreneurs when starting a business.  The United States continues to drop worldwide in terms of free enterprise and thus job creation…New Zealand and even Singapore is more competitive than America. 
When Pres. Obama was in office, Democrats created more job and business strangling regulation than ever before which is why job creation during his administration was weak.  It has improved under Pres. Trump due to his reduction of regulation.  It can do even better!
“We have too many of our elected officials who have never been responsible for profit and loss, never been entrepreneurs, never been anything to do with understanding where a dollar really comes from.
 
 
 

>>Beijing has made primacy in the wireless industry a national priority. It has taken a whole-of-government approach (including policy, financial, and diplomatic initiatives) to achieve this geostrategic priority for Beijing. The U.S. has started to take diplomatic steps to counter this push. But more is needed – and quickly.

China and the West are locked in a struggle for control of the future of communications technology, the next generation internet, and the flow of information.

The next two weeks may well prove decisive in deciding who wins the future. The Chinese know it and are acting with speed, decisiveness, and commitment. The American government and American companies are far behind and just starting to play catch up.

Our own laissez-faire tendencies and preferences are being used to defeat us. If we don’t take decisive action soon, we will find that the Chinese have occupied an overwhelming position in wireless on the geostrategic map. We will find ourselves surrounded.

 

Here’s my idea for a new bill

 

Since term limits never seems to gain any traction perhaps we should entertain the idea of zero pay for elected officials after their third term in office…give them their office, expenses, health insurance while in office and a living allowance only=much like our Founding Fathers and see how many decide to remain in office.

 


Yours for a more secure future,

Bruce ‘the Poor Man!’

P.S.  A little note to the assumptive twit on twitter who decided to insult me by writing that I sounded like I had a life of privilege when starting my various businesses & had never experienced any hard times…screw you!  Every business I’ve started was via the bootstrap method.  Most were successful but not all.  I was given the President’s Award for Entrepreneurship and have been featured in Entrepreneur Magazine, Venture Magazine and 100s of others while volunteering with the SBA & at Veteran’s groups [and others] teaching them to how to launch their own small business!

 

Final Notes…

Contributors and subscribers enable the Poor Man Survivor to post 150+ free essays annually. It is for this reason they are Heroes and Heroines of New Media. Without your financial support, the free content would disappear for the simple reason that I cannot keep body and soul together on my meager book sales & ecommerce alone.

Free:  Economics in One Lesson - Something the ‘new’ Democrats should read!


 


People need to become more self-reliant, not more dependent on government.

How to Survive the War on the Middle Class

 Download here:

http://1drv.ms/1d9kfiU

 


Finally, grab an emergency power cell!

Having the Patriot Power Cell on-hand for emergencies keeps your essential electronics up and running in case you need to call for help. 

“The Cell is a workhorse of power — it’ll charge your phone soup to nuts 3 to 8 times… I think of the Patriot Power Cell as “everyday prepared.” Awesome for travel or avoiding inconveniences while saving your bacon in an outage. It’s a MUST HAVE for your survival lineup."

10,000 mAh Battery/Water Resistant/2 LED Flashlight/1.5 Watt Solar Panel/6-Hour Charge Time

Back in stock soon!

Support our efforts by shopping my storefront…


 

 
Additional Resources

Most of my readers already know the basics of emergency food storage, but I also have quite a few readers who are just getting started--people who have never used any food storage methods other than their refrigerator. This guide is my attempt to help them get started, and it's also a good refresher for more experienced preppers.


By the end of this guide, you will know the basics of food storage so you can start stockpiling the right foods in the right places to ensure your family has something to eat after a major disaster. You will also know a little about the most common food storage methods, and you'll be able to avoid mistakes that could put your food supply in jeopardy. Remember, this isn't a race to see who can get the most food on the shelf. This is a methodical, lifelong process--not something you can do in one weekend...



 

Rosefield is a classic traditional cabin, which can be built for less than $6,000. The cabin is open plan, which has the advantage of making it far easier, cheaper and quicker to build than more intricate cabins with separate rooms. This particular plan also includes a detailed cabin assembly diagram and step-by-step instructions which includes a foundation guide.  [282sf’]


 

 

Social Chaos Survival Guide: Savvy Precautions To Make You Self-Reliant


 

 A Smoking Frog Feature, Shallow Planet Production

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

How to Buy Land with Little or No Money Saved


Poor Man Survival

Self Reliance tools for independent minded people…


 

ISSN 2161-5543

A Digest of Urban Survival Resources

 

Prepper Real Estate: How to Buy Land with Little or No Money Saved


 
You probably have considered buying acreage and thought it well out of your reach financially. Well, that would put you in a boat with many others who think that owning raw land is only for the rich. That couldn’t be further from the truth. Let’s talk about how you can become a landowner with no money saved.

Still, having a good piece of land sets you up with freedoms that most other people do not have, particularly in a suburban sprawl.

Skill Work


If you are currently living in a tight-knit neighborhood in suburbia, doing things like shooting arrows, making bow drill fires and building wilderness shelters might bet you some strange looks. If you get into things like trapping, you will likely get animal control called.

You are also limited in how well you can get to know the natural world. Great wild edibles like dandelion, wood sorrel, and common plantain are probably in your yard but beyond that, you could struggle to get to know different species of trees and wild edibles.

If you have your own plot of wooded land, you can do most anything you like on it, if it’s big enough. You can even manage it to have the plant and tree species that you prefer for survival needs.

Leisure


Sometimes its just nice to go take a camping trip. It doesn’t have to be about survival skills or methods, it doesn’t have to be about anything but getting out and enjoying nature. During peak camping season you might struggle to reserve a campsite at the more popular locations.

This won’t be the case if you have your own plot of land.

Bugout Location


The bugout is hardly about a bag or a location on its own. Its one of the most misunderstood skills in all of prepping. A well thought-out and practiced bugout plan is something that you should be very proud of. It takes a lot of thought and a lot of work.

All that said, one of the first things to consider is that bugout location. Where is the goal? If you own land that means you are going to have access to that location without question.

Bunker Location


Though the bunker has been synonymous with preppers the reality is that most of us don’t have the money or the space to accommodate a bunker. Furthermore, many preppers want no parts of going into a hole in the ground to escape the dangers above.

Still, if it’s a goal of yours and you have the means, having raw land is the best way to bury a bunker and keep it a secret. It will be near impossible to keep OPSEC in mind while burying one such bunker in your backyard!

Profits


By going through the raw land buying process, you might find that you have a knack for finding and buying properties for very little or even no money. This might become a side income or a method of making all your income from buying land.

I am sure you have never thought of yourself as a land merchant, but it can be a great side income or even a new career!

The year before I quit my job and started working freelance in the prepping and survival niche, I was exploring becoming a realtor in raw land. As an outdoorsman, it held a lot of appeal. I spent about 3 months really working hard and learning as much as I could about the business. However, my first sale went sideways, and I decided it might be better to wait for this career.

I was working a full-time job and I started the deal in a hurry and used some methods that the pros did not recommend. I didn’t follow the process and, well, it didn’t work out in my favor. Through that journey, I learned about some interesting ways that people make dirt cheap offers on raw land and walk away with their own land or properties for resale.

To get started you are going to need to understand what tax liens and tax deeds are. So let’s start with that.

Tax Liens


If you don’t pay those horrendous property taxes that come each year, you can incur a tax lien on your property.

Tax Lien is the first major step the IRS takes against individuals to collect back taxes. A Tax Lien gives the IRS a legal claim to your property as security or payment for your tax debt. It is used to protect the government’s interest in your assets. – www.irs.gov

Tax Deeds


If you decide to ignore the tax lien the government can take ownership of your property for not paying those taxes that caused the lien.

A legal document that grants ownership of a property to a government body when the property owner does not pay the taxes due on the property. A tax deed gives the government the authority to sell the property to collect the delinquent taxes and transfer the property to the purchaser. Such sales are called “tax deed sales” and are usually held as auctions where the minimum bid is the amount of back taxes and fees owed. – www.irs.gov

The interesting thing about all this tax deed and tax lien business is that our intrusive government will not only take your property if you don’t pay the taxes on it, it will also make your financial woes public to everyone around you.

Just by contacting or visiting your local county treasury you will be able to get a list of tax liens on properties in your area. You can do this for any area, as well. While it might seem a little predatory, you will be able to sit down and really get a grip on who is going to lose their property to the local government.

If capitalizing on another’s misfortune makes you a little queasy, let me give you a little background on how many of these properties wind up in lien status and beyond. Every day people die. We are facing a wave of retiring baby boomers and that the aging population is leaving behind money and property.

Sometimes those who inherit land don’t want it. They may live states away from the land that was given to them. The last thing they want is an annual bill, and some can’t even afford it! They would rather it just go away. This land is often what gets eaten up by these tax deeds.

You can play the middle man and get between the government and the property owner. This comes down to present a cash offer to the owner for that land.

Your Tax Refund

About this time every year, even Americans who don’t save a penny, get a little bump in the finances. It comes in the form of a tax refund. This amount of money varies for every person but with the new tax laws, most everyone should see some sort of a return.

This is how you make your cash offer for that raw land. This is the money you use to go after that special piece of property that someone may just be trying to unload anyway.

Imagine having a burdensome piece of land that you want nothing to do with. Imagine you are letting the taxes pile up and then someone comes along and offers you $500 bucks to take the burden from you. Maybe they owe $200 in back taxes so you walk away with a property for $700! I know there are people who are gonna say:

“Even with a tax return, I don’t have that kind of money!”

Well, offer what you can for that land and maybe they will bite. The worst case scenario is that you go into an offer with no land and you leave with no land. At least you are back where you started.

Tax Deed Auctions

Another great way to get the most out of that tax refund, if you don’t want to make an offer directly to a landowner, is to attend local tax deed auctions.

When the government takes possession of a person’s land, they don’t want to keep it. The last thing they want to do is upkeep a piece of land and not collect taxes on it. So their motivation is to find a new owner of that land. Move it to the highest bidder and get it back on the books as taxable property.

They do this with tax deed auctions. You can get a list of the properties that are going to be auctioned from your local treasury. These auctions happen on varying basis depending on the locality but you can take your tax refund and go bid on some properties.

If you go this route be sure you show up with a set of properties that you already know, from the provided list, to assure you have clear goals and budgets for bidding. You don’t want to come home broke with a new property either! So you have to do some research and set hard limits on your purchase amount.

Researching your Land

Probably the most important part of this whole process is the research you do before contacting an owner or before attending an auction. You have to know what you’re after or else you are just shooting in the dark. Don’t wind up thinking you got a great deal and finding out you bought 5 acres of mosquito-infested swampland abnormally high in radon.

Property Type


If you are in the market for true raw land you are going to be looking for residential/agricultural land or just agricultural. These are the tracts of raw land that you want to buy and will be listed among other types of properties like residential and commercial.

Property Size and Lines


While the paper might say 15 acres you need to what the property lines look like. What is the shape of the property? What if its 15 acres but its only 50 yards wide. Just a pencil-shaped property that is very hard to take advantage of.

Some properties have no road frontage either or access! I know that sounds crazy but it’s true. You have to be aware of that or you might wind up owning one and having to invest in an easement to even get to your property.

Flood Zone


Is your property in the flood plain? A very important and very simple question to answer.

Location


Be sure that your location matches up with your needs. While you might get a great deal on a property that is 200 miles from your home, can you get there in an emergency?

Owner


This is one of the trickiest parts of the process and you might need to call the city or county to get more information on a property. A property location is not going to give you the address of a property owner. As we mentioned the property could be in Virginia and the owner might live in California

However, having a direct mailing address to them means you can send an offer for that land.

Conclusion


A piece of property gives you lots of options. Most preppers dream of having a piece of land to call their own. Whether that be the beginnings of a homestead or just a secure place to bugout is up to that person. I think we can all agree that some land is better than no land.

If you find that piece of land and you are closing a deal, remember, without a deed you have nothing. Be sure that when money changes hands there is a deed for that property present, or you trust that it’s coming to you. Without a deed on that property, you don’t own anything.

Contracts can be a big help when you are dealing with property owners. The state will have the proper paperwork if you go the route of tax deeds but buying from individuals will mean that you cover all your basis. Consult a realtor or lawyer to be sure you don’t get taken advantage of.

I hope you are inspired to use this information in this article to get your own piece of heaven. Remember, there are few resources that cannot be reproduced. Raw land is the most precious of them all.

Author’s Bio

James Walton is the host of the I AM Liberty Show (www.iamlibertyshow.com) a podcast about 21st-century freedom. He is a freelance writer in the prepping and survival niche and likes to keep a healthy balance between prepping and enjoying life.

NOTE:  My wife and bought and sold several properties over the years using creative financing methods which often included seller financing or land-contract deals and lease-option which were very lucrative to buyers in depressed areas in which we sold. I’m sure you can find examples of contracts for such financing online.




Here’s my idea for a new bill

 
Since term limits never seems to gain any traction perhaps we should entertain the idea of zero pay for elected officials after their third term in office…give them their office, expenses, health insurance while in office and a living allowance only=much like our Founding Fathers and see how many decide to remain in office.

 

Yours for a more secure future,

Bruce ‘the Poor Man!’


Final Notes…

Contributors and subscribers enable the Poor Man Survivor to post 150+ free essays annually. It is for this reason they are Heroes and Heroines of New Media. Without your financial support, the free content would disappear for the simple reason that I cannot keep body and soul together on my meager book sales & ecommerce alone.

 


This past November, the state of Washington did a foolish thing: It placed a matter of civil rights in the hands of voters. The voting public is very possibly the worst custodian of any human right, simply because it’s mob rule. In other words, whatever most voters select is forced upon everyone else.

 

Free:  Economics in One Lesson - Something the ‘new’ Democrats should read!


 


As you plan your finances, don’t forget about tax breaks. With the right approach, it’s possible to make the most of your money by including tax planning in your financial picture. Here's how to find out what tax benefits for individuals are available for you, and then use them to keep more of your money.


As fraudsters get sneakier about stealing personal data it's important that you protect your personal information. Enter FICO’s latest innovation, the Family Ultimate 3B plan. With this plan, you can stay up-to-date on credit data for your whole family.

People need to become more self-reliant, not more dependent on government.

How to Survive the War on the Middle Class

 Download here:

http://1drv.ms/1d9kfiU

 



Have Outstanding Medical Debt? You're Not Alone: Americans of all ages have medical bills they've yet to cover. Here's how to manage those payments and avoid a similar fate going forward. The Motley Fool

 

Finally, grab an emergency power cell!

Having the Patriot Power Cell on-hand for emergencies keeps your essential electronics up and running in case you need to call for help. 

“The Cell is a workhorse of power — it’ll charge your phone soup to nuts 3 to 8 times… I think of the Patriot Power Cell as “everyday prepared.” Awesome for travel or avoiding inconveniences while saving your bacon in an outage. It’s a MUST HAVE for your survival lineup."

10,000 mAh Battery/Water Resistant/2 LED Flashlight/1.5 Watt Solar Panel/6-Hour Charge Time

Back in stock soon!

Support our efforts by shopping my storefront…


 

Additional Resources

 



 


 


 

Social Chaos Survival Guide: Savvy Precautions To Make You Self-Reliant


 
 

A Smoking Frog Feature, Shallow Planet Production