Too expensive to live in this state; if you make less than 60K, you’re finished.

I am wondering how it got to  be so expensive to live in our state.

If you are single with no dependents and you make well under 60K, how do you get by and survive?

Who do we pin this on? The teachers making far too much, incentives for projects that went bad? What’s the cause of it?

We were stupid enough to give Revel 300M to build a casino and hotel — we know how that turned out. And we were dumb enough to lend a Catholic healthcare network 275M to buy a hospital in Newark.

The deal for the hospital’s gone bad and now we are stuck picking up the tab. We will be stuck with the tab for Revel too.

There are other deals that went bad, like a meadowlands project and we have a shell of a building that is supposed to be a brand new mall.

We have a mess of a hospital system. A good 10 have closed in the last 10 years.  There may be more to come if the investors that are getting involved blank up the entire deal.

We had other deals that went bad; all of them involved incentives and loans — it is hospitals and more. We are on the hook for everything.

I say all of that was parceled over to the taxpayer.

And now we are expected to be a lifeboat for Honduran youth. What a mess.

We also have too many school districts. We need consolidation and in a hurry.

I have seen rents go off the charts — it was not that expensive 10 years ago to live here — the average rent is at least $1800 for a one bedroom apartment. How do you afford it if you do not make a decent salary?

I am wondering where I am going, both literally and figuratively — where will I be living? I don’t even know if this house will sell (but there is a home up the block that was razed and now evidently a bigger house is being accommodated: who is building the house, I don’t know and I am going to find out and blast the town counsel on Tuesday…that is another story.  I am pretty sure somebody  bought that house and if the owners who currently own that home are building new and have plans on living in the brand new house, it’s very doubtful.

Around here you build a gargantuan home with the hopes of charging at least 800K for the home. The house is in a one family zone and the houses themselves were build somewhere around the mid-50s.

This is a mess.

I never saw any of this coming down the pike, including how expensive it is to live in this state: We do not have ammenites and to spend the day down the shore in peak season is costly. Take your family of 4 and you will spend at least $200 on a day trip, factoring in tolls and gas and beach passes ($10!) and eating somewhere during the day.  And the per-night charge for a room in a tiny little hotel is at least $275 a night!

How did everything get so expensive?

We will be stuck with the tab for the out of work casino employees in more ways than one. ATlantic City is nowhere near a state college — there might be a community college there, or over in the next county — you are  given  $4,000 for training and that money has to be spent at a county community college or at a state run college.

That money will not take you far for retraining for anything. And you are not even guaranteed a job once you’re finished with your coursework; who is hiring??? — what a mess.

Where are you planning on sending over 10,000 to retrain??? These are service people with not much of a background and I am sure that there are many in the bunch that would up with a casino job…. because the “real” job they had is now history.

How can I even afford to live here? THis mess with Bro is one thing — the cost of living is skyrocketing and because of that alone, the day was coming when the house would have to be sold.

I never expected any of this to happen. In the wrong place at the wrong time — I can’t see how many of my neighbors are going to make it.  Maybe they have kids who are fiunancially aiding them — I can only guess.

(I say to take Revel and turn it into a VA hospital: they badly need one in that area.)

As for me, I am hoping for the best. I never saw any of this coming, economy wise and job wise. And your job means everything.


6 thoughts on “Too expensive to live in this state; if you make less than 60K, you’re finished.”

  1. Same thing here in ‘Amish Country’. Big houses are built, but I do not know who lives in them. The whole country is now divided between ‘haves, and have nots’! 20% of people are ‘haves’ while 80% of people are ‘have nots’. If you read the article, I recommended in my most recent post, you will know why this is. If you have not read it yet, please do. As for your house, find out its value as a tear down. You may be blessed by rising real estate values in your area. It is always good to be fully informed when selling a house.

    1. The job combining that your acquaintance writes about is just the end result of the push of clerical work and other support tasks onto professional and technical staff that I’ve watched my entire career. For an employer, this has two benefits: it depresses the pay of the skilled worker due to the presence of the clerical/support work and it eliminates a job. The downside is that it prepares the person for a better job that they cannot get by internal promotion at their current employer, so they will eventually lose that person. As long as there is an excess or perceived excess of employees, this situation is sustainable at the cost of relatively high turnover.

      Unless you live in an area where there is decent mobility between jobs, the cost to change jobs is considerable when relocation costs are considered. A downside of living in such an area is that it is usually urban, with the higher cost of living that living in an urban area usually entails, so the pay increase may not go as far as expected.

  2. The $300M that you cite, $261.4M of which comes from the state economic development agency, was to be disbursed over a 20-year period. I don’t know the schedule, but itis probable that the amount that the state has sunk into Revel in the name of economic development is nowhere near the total amount that you cite.

    Most of the financing for Revel came from investors other than the state. It is the bondholders who stand to lose in a default, not the state. The type of bond matters. If they were sold strictly for the purchase of the hospitals or construction of Revel, without recourse to state revenues, then the bondholders lose and will recover only a little of the principal of the bonds when the assets are liquidated in bankruptcy.

    In Revel’s first bankruptcy, the bondholders got a substantial ownership interest in exchange for discharging a portion of the debt. This is fairly common in bankrupticies.

  3. How long could you last — if you work for some little company that isn’t crazy about giving employees a yearly raise — and how long do you last in this game if you are not being paid a competitive wage to begin with.

    Sooner or later, it’s all going to hit you over the head.

    You have to have a big money job to even be able to own the smallest of homes in this state. The cost of living seems to be increasing monthly — how long is “the little guy” supposed to keep up with the price of everything?

  4. When I started in the working world, the minimum wage was $2.90 an hour. My first job paid a little over $4/hour to start, more then 30% over minimum, and increased from there.

    At the time (1979) the practical minimum wage, at least in New York City, was somewhat higher than the Federal minimum wage. For most employers, the Federal minimum didn’t matter because they couldn’t find employees if they only offered the minimum.

    And if you worked full time for twice the minimum wage, you could think about getting your own apartment. I moved out from my parents during my last year of engineering school, when I had a job paying about 2.5 times the minimum wage. I had a 1-bedroom apartment in a decent part of town, with no roommates, and had no trouble paying the rent with occasional overtime.

    But now, wages have been driven down so that the Federal minimum wage represents a real constraint. And if you want a place for yourself, you need maybe 4x minimum wage to live as comfortably as I did in 1983 for 2.5x minimum wage.

    1. There was a house across the street from ours that sold for 60K in 1983.

      That house has undergone a subdivision and has at least 3 families living in it — it was supposed to be a one family home and this is another story in itself — I can imagine what it is worth now.

      I will guess if it sold right now as is it would go for about 600K.

      The house I am speaking of burned in a fire 8 years ago. The guy who owns it wanted to demolish it and build a megamansion on its property — the bunch of us in this neighborhood banded together and had it stopped. We spoke up at every variance meeting and counsel meeting where this house was the topic du jour.

      He rebult it “as it was” and yes, he subdivided it — you can tell by the number of people comng and going and by how many cars are on that property that there are more than 2 families living in that home.

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