Making Christmas Work for You

Christmas can be a time of incredible expense for everyone. There are presents to be bought, festive meals to be made and family members to appease.  All of this costs money and for those who have not budgeted ahead of time, extra revenue needs to be made.

If you missed out this year, start  looking ahead for next, as in Sacramento there are events to guide on how to get through the festive period financially.  One example are the Personal Finance Workshops happening early next year for 5 Thursdays.  Topics discussed include: cash flow increase; asset accumulation; planning your retirement and saving for children’s education.  When ones regular finances are in order, putting aside extra needed cash for holiday seasons like Christmas becomes much more manageable.

One is never too young to start saving money.  That can be seen from one of our very dear local children, 5-year old Faye Segraves who heard about the death of Cal Fire engineer Cory Iverson who was struck down while battling Ventura County’s Thomas Fire.  Her response was that she wanted to give money to kids who had lost their fathers so that they could have extra toys for Christmas.  With her mother Kylee, they set up their own fundraiser in conjunction with the Wildland Fighter Foundation.

If a little girl can understand the value of getting money for crises, then all the more so should we as adults be able to plan (financially) for much of everyday life’s little extras.

Sacramento State Receives $6 Million Donation to Boost Entrepreneurship

Sacramento State recently received its largest cash donation in history from former Sleep Train owner Dale Carlsen. The $6 million donation was made in support of a new innovation and entrepreneurship center on campus.

After the announcement, Carlsen said: “Right now at Sacramento State and in our region, this is a transformative time. This is the time to grow more entrepreneurs, grow more businesses, grow more jobs in our area, and this is the way to do it. We have to do it through innovation. We’ve got to do it through creativity.”

“The old-school way doesn’t do it anymore” he added. “Changing the mindset at the campus will change the mindset in the region.”

The Dale and Katy Carlsen Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship will include classes and a curriculum from UC Berkley, and will take place in the library’s multimedia room. The university is looking for the right executive director to take over the project and build an appropriate program.

“Our vision is to provide the tools, resources and guidance to achieve it,” Carlsen said.

 

Sacramento Planning New Bridge

Sacramento is planning a new bridge across the river. If planned correctly, the new addition has the potential to boost traffic between the Bridge District and West Sacramento as well as enhance riverfront development by drawing cyclists and pedestrians.

The Sacramento community is going to be directly involved in the process, and the public has been invited to a meeting to participate in the discussion. The new bridge will redirect most of the traffic from the old I Street Bridge, which is over a century old and too narrow for many vehicles. The old bridge will remain available to carry commuter and freight train, and the viaducts will be demolished to open up the riverfront on both sides.

According to the Sacramento Bee, “The new span is planned just north and would be the first linking Sacramento and West Sacramento since the Tower Bridge was built in 1934.”

Plans are for it be used by “vehicles, bicyclists, pedestrians and a possible future streetcar line. It would be a direct route from the railyard, where a Kaiser Permanente hospital and a Major League Soccer stadium are planned, to the mixed-use Bridge District, which is already developing.”

Sacramento To Launch New Bike Lane Design

Sacramento is planning to implement a new street design to protect cyclists without affecting local drivers next year. Called “parking-protected bike lanes”, the approach is aimed at separating the two modes of transportation with the help of a parking lane.

The Sacramento Bee reports:

 

Lyft Launches Black Car Service in Sacramento

Due to increasing demand, Lyft, Inc. has begun offering its luxury service in Sacramento. Based in San Francisco, Lyft is a ride-sharing service which has swept across the United States since its launch in 2012.  Providing stylish “black car” transportation, Lyft’s new Lyft Lux and Lyft Lux SUV services are geared toward businessmen and other formal travelers. According to a Lyft spokesperson, the luxury drivers can earn up to five times the far of a regular Lyft driver.

“We’ve listened to our community and know that there is a need for a more premium ride. Our drivers who have high-end vehicles now have the opportunity to expand earnings and fulfill needs of their passengers,” spokewoman Darcy Nenni wrote in an email.

Lyfts new service will also be launched in numerous other cities across the country. Drivers who participate in the new venture will have to meet strict vehicle requirements: a 2011 or newer model car in excellent condition, black exterior and leather seats, and ratings of at least 4.7 of 5.

Sacramento Business Impacted by New Marijuana Grow Permits

Sacramento has approved 6 commercial grow permits, and dozen of other properties have also applied for permission to grow the plant on their properties. Real estate prices and local businesses are already being affected.

KCRA 3 reports that mall business owners throughout the city are concerned. The permit process has pushed commercial real estate prices up dramatically, and as leases expire, businesses are being forced to look for new locations.

Brian Bendix and his family run one such business. Their American Stripping Company, based in Sacramento, has been in business for over 30 years.  Now that marijuana grow licenses are bolstering the real estate prices in the area, they won’t be able to afford to stay once this year’s lease is up. They, like many other, anticipate having to leave the city to stay afloat.

 

Sacramento Resale Prices Reach Post-Crash High

Prices of homes in Sacramento County have been on the rise, and have recently hit the highest mark since before the crash in 2007.

According to CoreLogic, the average resale price of a family home in the area was $340,500 in July. In August 2005, when housing prices were at their peak, the average price was $374,000, whereas prices in October 2011 dropped as low as $155,000.

The latest increase in prices, which is 10% higher than last summer’s, has been driven by a small market and high demand.

“New home sales were on the rise in Sacramento County, with a 29 percent increase since July 2016,”  CoreLogic reported. “That’s partly the result of a resumption of construction in North Natomas, after federal authorities lifted a de facto building moratorium they’d imposed because of flood risks.”

Some experts believe the new developments in the resale market will make new homes a more viable option for buyers. As a result, housing construction may pick up; a critical improvement to the Sacramento economy.

Sneak Peek into Amazon’s New Sacramento Facility

Amazon has offered a sneak peek into its new Sacramento fulfillment center this week. According to County Supervisor Phil Serna, the construction is moving forward at a quick pace.

“I think it bodes well for the future of the business park and for other property owners here to see that this is not just going to be a very successful operation employing a lot of people, but that Sacramento County is very committed to making sure that the permits necessary to do something like this can be streamlined,” he said.