Transition Thursday: Baby Boomers in Job Transition – Get Real…and You’ll Get Back to Work Soon

Baby Boomer Entrepreneur

In the article Baby Boomers in Job Transition: Get Real…and You’ll Get Back to Work Soon, author Rick Gray writes about how seemingly out of touch many Baby Boomers are with today’s job market reality.

Here’s some of Rick’s no-holds-barred view and advice:

1. Park the career ego now. That means not pushing compensation requirements, title, reporting structure or common senior-level ‘perk’ considerations such as signing bonus, extra vacation days or severance package. These types of demands are likely to swiftly convince a prospective employer to go in another candidate direction, and leads me to my second point.

2. Your singular focus should be to get the job OFFER. It’s less about the specific job terms and more about seizing greater control of your situation to get back into the workforce. And at this stage of your career, you have very little of that until someone formally commits to hiring you. From there you may be able to negotiate some aspects of the offer package and, in the end, you always have the option of turning it down. But better to be employed in a less-than-ideal situation while you continue to search for a more attractive gig — your marketability is infinitely better if you’re already employed, particularly now.

3. Stay engaged. This advice may sound obvious, but I’m talking about a thoughtful, multi-dimensional strategy.

(a) First and foremost, secure a freelance consulting project or busy yourself with volunteer work that highlights competencies relevant to your job search. Though it’s clearly not a full-time job, you will leave a stronger impression by showing your skills are in demand if you can refer to existing projects. What if you’re not good at selling or marketing your capabilities for freelance projects? There are a growing number of online marketplaces like Upwork that make it remarkably simple to present, promote, price, procure and administratively process such work, both cross-function and industry.

(b) Second, stay regularly connected with your network of relationships: personal and professional, and any professional affiliations/memberships you may have. And while some email, LinkedIn and other social media exchange is efficient and necessary, the personal, face-to-face contact and exchange is strongest, and a better way to develop new relationships that may help you.

(c) Third, don’t dismiss networking events and organizations specifically targeting those in transition because everybody else there is unemployed and looking for a job just like you. Good ones, such as NSENG in the greater Chicago metro area, provide an incredible support group and platform for sharing experiences and expert tips about the job search process, exchanging senior-level contacts, and securing introductions to job leads from prior employer relationships of others. ”

Read more advice of Rick’s advice at Baby Boomers in Job Transition: Get Real…and You’ll Get Back to Work Soon.

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DAYNA WILSON: As a real estate agent I have been working with homebuyers and sellers throughout the East Bay communities of Layfayette, Moraga, Orinda and Walnut Creek since 2009. As a Certified Senior Housing Professional (CSHP) , I have special knowledge about everything from reverse mortgages to the importance of universal design. I can tap into my network and put you in touch with my team of qualified home inspectors, movers, attorneys, CPAs, organizers and other experts. I have all the resources and knowledge to simplify the transaction and eliminate the anxiety of selling your home.

Call me today to talk about your real estate concerns. I’m here to listen: 925.788.6582

Wellness Wednesday – Exercise As Medicine

Baby Boomer Couple on BicyclesIn the article Exercise As Medicine, author Jennifer Van Pelt, MA recommends fitness programs to boomers for their preventive qualities against disease, as well as socialization opportunities:

“According to U.S. Census data, there are currently more than 78 million baby boomers, and 58 million will still be alive in 2030. Such numbers indicate that current trends in older adult fitness driven by boomers will continue to evolve. While the size of the boomer population contributes to older adult fitness trends, recently published studies reporting the health and cost benefits of regular exercise for older adults are also spurring the development of new programs by care providers and reimbursement for exercise activities offered by insurance companies. And new technologies are providing new options to make older adult exercise both fun and functional.

‘There are many trends occurring in older adult fitness; however, probably the most significant one is the repackaging of exercise as a disease solution,’ says Colin Milner, CEO of the International Council on Active Aging (ICAA). Viewing exercise as medicine, as a tool to not only manage but also to prevent the health issues elders face, is becoming a commonplace way to promote regular exercise. The ICAA believes health plans will continue to pay for prevention because the fear of rising healthcare costs has forced health insurance companies to investigate the dollar value of exercise for prevention.

‘Many eyes opened when HealthPartners Research Foundation announced their study that showed adults aged 50-plus years who started exercising just 90 minutes a week saved, on average, $2,200 per year in medical costs,’ Milner says. According to Tricia Grayson, director of communications for Healthways’ SilverSneakers Fitness Program, Medicare claims costs in this study for SilverSneakers members were 30% lower than for nonparticipants.

Another study recently released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that Medicare recipients who participated for two years in the SilverSneakers health club exercise program had significantly lower healthcare costs overall, and older adults who visited health clubs at least twice per week had $1,252 less in healthcare costs than those who visited less than once per week. Combining those cost savings with baby boomers’ knowledge of the benefits of physical activity, health insurers take notice, Milner says.

In another nationwide study of more than 9,000 SilverSneakers members, 41% of members with diabetes reported having improved health after one or more years of participation and 46% reported improved body weight. High-risk sedentary behavior was reduced by 59% with SilverSneakers participation, Grayson notes.”

Read the rest: Exercise As Medicine.

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DAYNA WILSON: As a real estate agent I have been working with homebuyers and sellers throughout the East Bay communities of Layfayette, Moraga, Orinda and Walnut Creek since 2009. As a Certified Senior Housing Professional (CSHP) , I have special knowledge about everything from reverse mortgages to the importance of universal design. I can tap into my network and put you in touch with my team of qualified home inspectors, movers, attorneys, CPAs, organizers and other experts. I have all the resources and knowledge to simplify the transaction and eliminate the anxiety of selling your home.

Call me today to talk about your real estate concerns. I’m here to listen: 925.788.6582

Toss It Tuesday – From Downsizing Boomers, a Flood of Donated Art

Abstract Fine Art PaintingGot art? According to the New York Times article From Downsizing Boomers, a Flood of Donated Art, author John Hance writes about the upsurge in art donations, due to baby boomers downsizing:

“According to Brian Szott, head of collections and curator of art for the Minnesota Historical Society, there has been ‘a striking surge in the number of works that have been donated to the society over the last five years, from 22 in fiscal 2012 to 77 in the fiscal year that ended in June.’ Why the big increase? Mr. Szott says that works donated over the last five years have tended to come from older adults in the process of downsizing or decluttering. ‘It’s a huge shift in possession going on, and it’s going to affect the whole art world,’ he said.”

According to David J. Ekerdt, a sociologist and gerontologist at the University of Kansas, the trend is real.

“‘It makes perfect sense,’ said Dr. Ekerdt, who has studied the downsizing movement. ‘Baby boomers are offloading all kinds of things.’

While only 4 to 5 percent of people over 60 move to a smaller dwelling in a given year, about a third of the over-60 population will move over a 10-year interval, Dr. Ekerdt said. And that number is expected to increase over the next decade as the rest of the baby boom cohort moves into prime retirement age — now a quintessential time for decluttering and giving things away.

Donating to an institution is one of the easiest offloading strategies for possessions, he said. ‘You can, No. 1, give it to a family member or friend; 2, sell it; No. 3, donate; or No. 4 or 5, store it or trash it,” he said.'”

Read more here: From Downsizing Boomers, a Flood of Donated Art.

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DAYNA WILSON: As a real estate agent I have been working with homebuyers and sellers throughout the East Bay communities of Layfayette, Moraga, Orinda and Walnut Creek since 2009. As a Certified Senior Housing Professional (CSHP) , I have special knowledge about everything from reverse mortgages to the importance of universal design. I can tap into my network and put you in touch with my team of qualified home inspectors, movers, attorneys, CPAs, organizers and other experts. I have all the resources and knowledge to simplify the transaction and eliminate the anxiety of selling your home.

Call me today to talk about your real estate concerns. I’m here to listen: 925.788.6582

Moving Mom Monday: Should You Move To Be Closer To Your Aging Parents?

Elderly Man with Nurse in Assisted Living Setting

In the Next Avenue article Should You Move to Be Closer to Your Aging Parents?, author Deb Hipp offers the advice that long-distance caregiving is tough, but moving to be near parents is a big step. Consider these realities:

Aging Parents and Unrealistic Expectations. Caregivers who provide unpaid care for at least 21 hours per week report the highest stress of all caregiving groups, according to a 2015 report by the National Alliance for Caregiving and AARP. The typical high-hour caregiver provides care ‘for an average of five years and expects to continue care for another five years,’ the report found.

Moving Won’t Heal Old Wounds. Moving may be acceptable if you have a good relationship with your parents and time and resources to spend with your mom and dad – as long as they’re in favor of the move. However, don’t expect to heal a lifetime of conflict by swooping in to save the day.

You Give Up Your Whole Self. Even though Sara Tapscott knows that she didn’t have the resources and physical ability to move and take on full-time care giving for her parents, she’ll always struggle with her decision.
‘If I had a dollar for every tear I shed in guilt, I could have hired 15 caregivers,’ says Tapscott. She and her sister alternated visits to Des Moines until her mother Mary died in 2004. Tapscott even bought a handicapped-accessible van to transport her dad when she visited. In 2006, she moved Leo into a nursing home in Kansas City near her home. ‘He only lasted three weeks,’ says Tapscott. ‘There’s so much guilt if you don’t do it. But you also realize you give up your whole self to move, and in the long run, I didn’t think my parents would have wanted that. I went back and forth about it until they died,’ says Tapscott. ‘I still do.’”

Read more at Should You Move to Be Closer to Your Aging Parents?.

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DAYNA WILSON: As a real estate agent I have been working with homebuyers and sellers throughout the East Bay communities of Layfayette, Moraga, Orinda and Walnut Creek since 2009. As a Certified Senior Housing Professional (CSHP) , I have special knowledge about everything from reverse mortgages to the importance of universal design. I can tap into my network and put you in touch with my team of qualified home inspectors, movers, attorneys, CPAs, organizers and other experts. I have all the resources and knowledge to simplify the transaction and eliminate the anxiety of selling your home.

Call me today to talk about your real estate concerns. I’m here to listen: 925.788.6582

Freedom Friday: Should You Apply for Social Security Now or Later?

Part of Social Security Card

In the article Should You Apply for Social Security Now or Later?, author Giancarlo Diaz-Munio writes:

“When it comes to the question of Social Security income, the choice looms large. Should you apply now to get earlier payments? Or wait for a few years to get larger checks?”

Consider this:

How much smaller will your check be if you start receiving benefits at 62? The answer varies. As an example, let’s take someone born in 1955. For this baby boomer, the full retirement age is 66 years and 2 months. If that boomer decides to retire in 2017 at 62, his or her monthly Social Security benefit will be reduced about 26%. That boomer’s spouse would see a 30% reduction in monthly benefits. Should that boomer elect to work past full retirement age, his or her benefit checks will increase by 8.0% for every additional full year spent in the workforce. So, it really may pay to work longer.

Remember the earnings limit. Let’s put our hypothetical baby boomer through another example. Our boomer decides to apply for Social Security at age 62 in 2017, yet stays in the workforce. If he/she earns more than $16,920 in 2017, the Social Security Administration will withhold $1 of every $2 earned over that amount.”

Read more at Should You Apply for Social Security Now or Later?.

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DAYNA WILSON: As a real estate agent I have been working with homebuyers and sellers throughout the East Bay communities of Layfayette, Moraga, Orinda and Walnut Creek since 2009. As a Certified Senior Housing Professional (CSHP) , I have special knowledge about everything from reverse mortgages to the importance of universal design. I can tap into my network and put you in touch with my team of qualified home inspectors, movers, attorneys, CPAs, organizers and other experts. I have all the resources and knowledge to simplify the transaction and eliminate the anxiety of selling your home.

Call me today to talk about your real estate concerns. I’m here to listen: 925.788.6582

5 To-Do’s for Every Homeowner in October

Repairman with Tool Belt#1 Insulate exposed pipes with foam or heat tape. A burst pipe, like we have had in the past, is a wet disaster that can be avoided.

#2 Clean your chimney by hiring a professional chimney sweep to ensure your wood-burning fireplace burns more efficiently. This will also help to prevent chimney fires and carbon monoxide poisoning during the winter. So yeah, it’s pretty important.

#3 Get your furnace unit serviced. Call now. As temps drop the service companies get busier. Your technician will clean corrosion, replace filters and check the sytems for leaks, clogs or damage.

#4 Switch the direction of your ceiling fans. Most have a switch to allow the ceiling fan blades to rotate either clockwise or counterclockwise — one way pushes air down to create a nice breeze and the other sucks air up, helping to distribute the heat. Think counterclockwise when it’s warm and clockwise when it’s cool.

#5 Buy appliances. Manufacturers bring out their latest models during the fall, and stores offer big sales on appliances they want to move out to make room for newer inventory. This month there is still plenty of selection and retailers may be willing to wheel and deal. (refrigerators ar the exception with most new models coming out in the springtime.)

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DAYNA WILSON: As a real estate agent I have been working with homebuyers and sellers throughout the East Bay communities of Layfayette, Moraga, Orinda and Walnut Creek since 2009. As a Certified Senior Housing Professional (CSHP) , I have special knowledge about everything from reverse mortgages to the importance of universal design. I can tap into my network and put you in touch with my team of qualified home inspectors, movers, attorneys, CPAs, organizers and other experts. I have all the resources and knowledge to simplify the transaction and eliminate the anxiety of selling your home.

Call me today to talk about your real estate concerns. I’m here to listen: 925.788.6582

Transition Thursday: Your 10-Step Checklist to Retire in 2018

Retirement Checklist

In the US News & World Report article Your 10-Step Checklist to Retire in 2018 , author Maryalene LaPonsie writes about the things you need to do if you want to walk away from your job next year:

Calculate your retirement expenses. Joseph Roseman, managing partner of financial planning firm O’Dell, Winkfield, Roseman and Shipp in Charlotte, NC, says old planning models assumed people could live on 70 percent of their pre-retirement income. However, he finds that most new retirees have significantly greater expenses. ‘For the first five years, you pay as much or more,’ Roseman says.

Determine your guaranteed income. Roseman recommends 90 to 100 percent of expenses be covered by guaranteed income sources.

Pay down debt and build savings. Focus on eliminating debt that can drag down your retirement budget. Consider refinancing high-interest loans or variable interest rate mortgages now. Getting bank approval may be difficult for retirees without a regular paycheck.”

Read more advice at Your 10-Step Checklist to Retire in 2018 .

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DAYNA WILSON: As a real estate agent I have been working with homebuyers and sellers throughout the East Bay communities of Layfayette, Moraga, Orinda and Walnut Creek since 2009. As a Certified Senior Housing Professional (CSHP) , I have special knowledge about everything from reverse mortgages to the importance of universal design. I can tap into my network and put you in touch with my team of qualified home inspectors, movers, attorneys, CPAs, organizers and other experts. I have all the resources and knowledge to simplify the transaction and eliminate the anxiety of selling your home.

Call me today to talk about your real estate concerns. I’m here to listen: 925.788.6582

Wellness Wednesday – 8 Ways for Baby Boomers to Maintain Their Agility

Baby Boomer Couple MeditatingIn the US News & World Report slideshow 8 Ways for Baby Boomers to Maintain Their Agility, author Ruben Castaneda shares eight agility-maintaining strategies for baby boomers:

Get up. To improve your circulation and avoid stiffness, get up from your desk and take a short walk every hour.

Stretch gently. If you have a problem area, such as a tight Achilles tendon or hamstring, stretch in the morning after a warm shower, before you play a sport and again after to avoid post-activity tightness.

Walk efficiently. As you walk, keep your weight striking near the middle part of the heel, crossing the arch of your foot and continuing to your big toe. This also improves agility.

Sit correctly. If you have to sit on soft furniture, sit on your sitting bones, also known as sit bones or sitz bones. To find your sit bones, take a firm kitchen or dining room chair, slide you hands under your posterior with the palms up. The bony bits you feel are your sitting bones.

Discover more advice at 8 Ways for Baby Boomers to Maintain Their Agility.

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DAYNA WILSON: As a real estate agent I have been working with homebuyers and sellers throughout the East Bay communities of Layfayette, Moraga, Orinda and Walnut Creek since 2009. As a Certified Senior Housing Professional (CSHP) , I have special knowledge about everything from reverse mortgages to the importance of universal design. I can tap into my network and put you in touch with my team of qualified home inspectors, movers, attorneys, CPAs, organizers and other experts. I have all the resources and knowledge to simplify the transaction and eliminate the anxiety of selling your home.

Call me today to talk about your real estate concerns. I’m here to listen: 925.788.6582

Toss It Tuesday – 3 Reasons Why Downsizing Isn’t Just for Empty-Nesters

Large Home Downsized to Small HomeIn the USA Today article 3 reasons why downsizing isn’t just for empty-nesters, author Deborah Kearn writes:

“Downsizing into a smaller home has been a rite of passage almost exclusively for empty-nesters and retirees. But as home prices and mortgage rates rise and the inventory of homes for sale shrinks, younger generations might find upsides to downsizing earlier in life. If you don’t need a bigger home, downsizing earlier could work in your favor.”

Here’s why:

1. You’ll free up money for other financial goals. If you have a bigger home, much of your income is tied up in monthly mortgage payments. By getting a smaller, more affordable place, you could free up cash to put to work toward other goals such as college savings or retirement, says Tyler Whitman, a real estate agent with TripleMint in New York City.

2. You could move into a better neighborhood. Most homeowners (whether they have kids or not) want to live in a desirable neighborhood where they can put down roots, says Jessica Lautz, managing director of survey research and communications with the National Association of Realtors based in Washington, D.C. Choosing a smaller place in a sought-after area over more space elsewhere is a trade-off with a lot of potential upside: better schools, increased walkability, more charm or lower crime, Lautz says.”

Read the third reason here: 3 reasons why downsizing isn’t just for empty-nesters.

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DAYNA WILSON: As a real estate agent I have been working with homebuyers and sellers throughout the East Bay communities of Layfayette, Moraga, Orinda and Walnut Creek since 2009. As a Certified Senior Housing Professional (CSHP) , I have special knowledge about everything from reverse mortgages to the importance of universal design. I can tap into my network and put you in touch with my team of qualified home inspectors, movers, attorneys, CPAs, organizers and other experts. I have all the resources and knowledge to simplify the transaction and eliminate the anxiety of selling your home.

Call me today to talk about your real estate concerns. I’m here to listen: 925.788.6582

Moving Mom Monday: Moving a Parent to Assisted Living – 12 Strategies to Ease the Transition

Mother and Daughter at Assisted Living Facility

In the article Moving a Parent to Assisted Living: 12 Strategies to Ease the Transition, author Liz O’Donnell writes that moving a parent, even a willing one, into assisted living, or any senior living facility, is fraught with emotion:

“Your parents may mourn the loss of their younger years, their independence, the home they built. They could be scared about aging, making new friends, finding their way in a new place.

You may be mourning all of those things too. You may second-guess your decision. Did we act too quickly? Overreact? Wait too long? And you will feel guilt. Guilt is inevitable. Know that all of these feelings are normal and don’t need to last forever.”

12 strategies to keep in mind as you make the transition:

1. Give it time. Senior living experts say it typically takes between three and six months for someone to adjust to assisted living. That’s an average. It might be quicker; it may take longer. Stay focused on the reasons you made the decision (safety, health, security, sanity). Keeping the big picture in mind will help you through the rough patches.

2. Visit often, or not for two weeks. Only you know your parent, so only you can decide how best to assist them through the early weeks of the move. Many experts will tell you to visit as often as possible. Frequent visits can ease any stress your parent may have that they will be abandoned or lonely. It might be easier for them to meet people at activities or in the dining room if they have a companion with them. But if your parent is calling you several times a day, staying in their room, and waiting for you to show up and keep them company, you may need to give them some space in order to encourage them to branch out. When I went to college my parents wouldn’t let me come home to visit for the first few weeks. By forcing me to stay at school on the weekends, they forced me to make friends. Tough love – it can work both ways.

3. It takes a village. Mobilize yours. When we first moved my mother into assisted living, my sisters and I could not visit for a week or two. We had been staying with her before the move and needed to get back to work. Plus, our father was in the hospital. So I called my relatives and asked them to visit in our absence. Just as parenting takes a village, so does daughtering.

4. Expect setbacks. Just when you think you are over the hump and your parent is settling in, things will change. They will tell you they are lonely. They will decide they don’t like their new dining hall friends. They will ask to go home. These moments are heart wrenching but knowing that they are normal and that they will pass, can help get you through them.

Read more strategies at Moving a Parent to Assisted Living: 12 Strategies to Ease the Transition.

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DAYNA WILSON: As a real estate agent I have been working with homebuyers and sellers throughout the East Bay communities of Layfayette, Moraga, Orinda and Walnut Creek since 2009. As a Certified Senior Housing Professional (CSHP) , I have special knowledge about everything from reverse mortgages to the importance of universal design. I can tap into my network and put you in touch with my team of qualified home inspectors, movers, attorneys, CPAs, organizers and other experts. I have all the resources and knowledge to simplify the transaction and eliminate the anxiety of selling your home.

Call me today to talk about your real estate concerns. I’m here to listen: 925.788.6582