Today's Headlines - Realty Times

A man who had served in four tours of duty for the US Military, received three Purple Hearts, experienced extreme difficulty integrating back into society due to PTSD, anxiety, and having nearly been killed multiple times in war.

Once back home, veteran Joseph Serna was on probation for his alcohol struggles, which he used to fight the demons of his mind.

Sadly, the Judge had to sentence the decorated serviceman to one night in the county jail.

Shockingly, Judge Lou Olivera, after driving Serna to the jail, joined the fellow military man in the jail cell for the night so his comrade could make it through and have someone there to talk to, as the Judge too had served in the military in the Gulf War.

The article from WRAL says:

“A judge’s act of compassion has a former Fort Bragg soldier promising to get his life back on track.”

This is the ultimate Promise story – a Judge following through on the accountability of sentencing someone who had broken the rules, while equally doing what he felt was right in order to help the man make it through one more ordeal.

This is an older story, but a timeless example, of what a Leader can do to become Legendary, sharing a Signature Move of compassion, which any of us can cultivate, and keeping The Promise to serve another in need.

Do you have a story like this you would like to share?  I love receiving them, and extra thanks to my friend and longtime advocate of the Signature Moves brand, the great Thomas Cantrell, for sending this to me to pass along to our readers.

Posted On Wednesday, 23 February 2022 00:00 Written by

 

Posted On Wednesday, 23 February 2022 00:00 Written by
Posted On Tuesday, 22 February 2022 19:46
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Posted On Tuesday, 22 February 2022 19:30

How many of you reading this right now cringe at the thought of going to your general healthcare practitioner for your yearly physical, your dentist for a simple cleaning, or your optometrist for a vision screening?

If so, you’re not alone. Many individuals sit in the waiting room of whichever doctor they’re visiting at the moment, wishing this could be done in any simpler way possible. They imagine what it would be like if, just like your job, you could do this remotely: log in to a computer and meet with your doctor from afar.

Well, this fantasy has always been a reality in some ways, but as of recently, it is absolutely authentic and attainable by the masses! Telemedicine is here en masse, and has staying power in ways never before seen. Now, thanks to the emergence of COVID-19 in 2020, telemedicine is almost as common as remote work, online education, and family gatherings over Zoom.

Using my Hard Trend Methodology, where we identify future certainties that will happen and separate them from Soft Trends, or future maybes that are open to influence, I accurately predicted as far back as the early nineties that eventually, telemedicine would undoubtedly help cut healthcare costs, coining this industry as a “virtual hospital” of sorts.

But before I discuss how this was a fully predictable Hard Trend and how telemedicine will now bring with it even more Hard Trend future certainties sure to disrupt many working in healthcare if they don’t use my Anticipatory Leader System to leverage it to their advantage, let’s explore a brief history of telemedicine and define what it is exactly.

An Evolving Remote Science

If we were to literally travel back in time to the early nineteen hundreds, confront a doctor and tell them that one day, we would conduct physical exams of patients via video phone calls on devices called computers, they would likely inspect your head for contusions from a fall!

However, little did they know, many were building the foundation for this concept of telemedicine at the time! While computers and video conferencing certainly did not exist, many doctors are known to have conducted medical examinations via radio to sailors on ships!

Even predating that, if the telephone has been around, doctors of all practices have been known to have to cut down on office visits by calling patients with results, or patients calling them to come to their home, known as “house calls.”

Too often, we define “telemedicine” or “telehealth” as being done via video communication on a computer alone and base our understanding solely on that. This is because we are in a visually digitally disruptive era, whereas the disruptive technology of yesterday involved more audio- or mechanical-based disruptions. But it is important to remember that this difference in devices does not make them any less disruptive; identifying a Hard Trend as such is identifying technological advancements, whatever those may be.

Today’s Telemedicine Is Visual

So where is telemedicine today, and what exactly defines “telemedicine” for us? Even prior to the coronavirus pandemic of 2020, there were many other reasons doctors of all fields implemented digital technology of today to conduct remote evaluations of patients.

For instance, the field of ophthalmology, which involves the diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the eyes, is more critical than most realize. Around the year 2014, many ophthalmologists began leveraging the Hard Trend of telemedicine by having technicians bring digital vision screening machines to community centers in underprivileged areas to scan for glaucoma and other eye diseases.

This was to aid those who cannot afford high insurance costs or simply do not have convenient access to ophthalmologists’ offices. In using these machines, an ophthalmologist has the ability to inspect the patient’s eye remotely from their office, watching either a live broadcast or pre-recorded capture of the inspection. Immediately, they can detect dangerous eye disease, potentially saving the patient’s vision or their life altogether.

Long before COVID-19, telemedicine was implemented in any way possible to serve these underprivileged areas, as well as rural areas that are hours from the nearest clinic. But the crux of what telemedicine is for us today is visual: meeting with your doctor over video communication technology.

Also around the years 2013 and 2014, when I last wrote about this topic, there was an influx of non-emergency visits to the emergency room, clogging up the queue and causing chaos. Now, there are specialists who answer non-emergency virtual visits by concerned parents who aren’t sure if their child’s ailment merits rushing them to the ER, while on-hand and in-person physicians handle emergencies that most definitely need in-person care.

A Disruptive Future

The coronavirus pandemic of 2020 was a digital accelerator in and of itself; everyone needed to stay home or go virtual with their jobs and schooling. Telemedicine may have already been on an upward trajectory; this accelerated it even faster. Now that we are on the other side of the pandemic, many assumed the virtualization of many fields would subside back to pre-pandemic stats.

But the reality is, virtualization of everything will only increase. The benefits of telemedicine play a role in this, as previously mentioned in this blog; underprivileged and rural areas now have access to expert medical professionals by simply logging in to their computers or apps.

We are only moving forward, and disruptive digital technology is only going to accelerate faster every year thanks to the Three Digital Accelerators — computing/processing power, bandwidth, and storage. The world of telemedicine is directly to the benefit of the patients first and foremost, which means it can be disruptive for healthcare workers of all levels, especially if they are used to their own personal status quo.

How can these healthcare workers avoid being permanently displaced by telemedicine?

An Anticipatory Mindset as a Healthcare Professional

Much like any professional working or running a business in any industry, implementing an Anticipatory mindset is key in staying ahead of disruption. In medicine, becoming the positive disruptor and moving from success to significance is the best place to start. How can these disruptions better the patient experience?

Whether you’re a top-tier neurosurgeon or a certified nursing assistant (CNA), an Anticipatory Leader in your area of practice will accept that as technology evolves, your role and duties will evolve with it. Consider the following when anticipating how your role will change:

• What disruptive digital technology can you identify that has the potential to disrupt your specific duties? Remember: this is a Hard Trend that you cannot change.

• What can you learn about said disruptive digital technology and how can you leverage it to your advantage? Conversely, this is a Soft Trend that you can influence.

It is also of value to note that we live in a Both/And world, especially in medicine. While just as many doctor visits can be made remote, there are other instances, such as the event of a broken bone, that cannot yet be remedied remotely.

Additionally, there is an art and science to everything. The human touch is always needed in medicine; you are the human in the equation, and your specific skills are irreplaceable like that of fine art. The technology is a mere tool that you can adapt to using, just as we’ve adapted to using a hammer and nails to help build a home as opposed to mud and sticks.

Posted On Tuesday, 22 February 2022 00:00 Written by
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My grandfather could read the weather patterns very accurately on his daily walk from the farmhouse to the barn. He knew if it would rain or snow the next day just from the look of the clouds and the feel of the air. He knew when to plant and work on the fence or tend the animals. I wish I could read the financial weather patterns as precisely as my grandfather could read the clouds. 

History is a good meteorologist.

No one has a crystal ball, but the next best thing to forecasting the future is to look back to see how these same weather patterns affected our real estate and financial markets in times past. Where are real estate values headed? Where are mortgage rates headed? What about our economy in general? Is this a good time to buy real estate? Here are some weather systems moving in our financial markets right now. 

Inflation

Inflation occurs when there is too much money chasing too few goods. The rule of supply and demand pushes the prices of goods and services higher, eating away at the value of money you have in savings. Mortgage rates tend to increase when inflation moves up because mortgage rates are tied closely to the yield on the 10-year bonds. 

When inflation is high, bond yields normally move higher to attract more buyers. Today inflation is at around 7.5%, which is higher than it has been since 1982.

The Federal Reserve

The job of the Federal Reserve is to keep inflation in check –somewhere around 2 percent. To bring inflation back down to a normal level, the Federal Reserve can implement some tools. One of their tools is to raise their Federal Reserve rate to banks. As they increase the cost of borrowing, this slows the economy and ratchets down inflation. Historically when the Federal Reserve makes aggressive hikes in their rate over a short time, it throws the economy into a recession. A recession affects the stock markets and also encourages lower mortgage rates.   

The other tool used by the Federal Reserve is their practice of buying bonds. For the last two years, the Federal Reserve has been buying around $70 billion in mortgage-backed securities per month to keep the mortgage rates low and protect the housing market during the pandemic. Today the Fed holds nine trillion dollars on their balance sheet. They have decided to taper off buying for a while. If they stop making new purchases but keep reinvesting their monthly profits into new purchases, mortgage rates will continue to stay moderately low. If the Federal Reserve stops reinvesting the profits into new purchases and starts selling off their balance sheet, mortgage rates will go higher much faster.

Housing Inventory

We are experiencing a crucial shortage of homes for sale, which pressures prices up on houses. We have approximately 910,000 homes listed for sale compared to 3.7 million homes in 2006. Added to the pain, today, we have 12 million additional households competing for the meager number of homes for sale. Builders are trying to increase the number of homes available to buy but are fighting shortages in labor and rising material costs. Based on birth rates and immigration, we expect a healthy number of home buyers waiting in line to buy their homes, with demand pushing into the next couple of years. These numbers indicate the value of real estate should continue to increase.

Mortgage Rates

Mortgage rates are expected to rise but only moderately unless inflation continues to rage. The quality of mortgages and the homes that secure them is much higher than we saw in 2007. In 2006 approximately a third of mortgages were originated using Alt-A and subprime loan products. Today, borrowers are stronger, and loan products offer more stability. The mortgage quality is much better. Low inventory of homes and high demand from homebuyers seems to indicate we are not in a real estate bubble. 

Wages

Wages have been on the rise, keeping homes more affordable even though home prices and rates have increased.  

Rents

Renters should expect to see market rents increase approximately 8% to 12% per year. If renters can purchase a home today and lock in a fixed-rate mortgage, they could avoid the landlord’s annual hike in rent payments. But, as prices on homes increase and mortgage rates rise, the margin is narrowing on the difference between a rent payment and mortgage payments. 

Search for other forecasts and compare to determine for yourself where the market is moving. Corelogic publishes their opinions. Freddie Mac’s economists offer their projections. 

You can also get opinions from National Association of Realtors and Mortgage Bankers Association.  

 

Find more tools and resources for overcoming common barriers to mortgage approval from the book by Jo Garner Choosing the Best Mortgage: The Quickest Way to the Life You Want, on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

Posted On Monday, 21 February 2022 00:00 Written by
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