Why on-the-job training is becoming the new college degree

Why on-the-job training is becoming the new college degree

Apprenticeships, once considered an “old-fashioned” training pathway limited to very specific trades, are gaining ground today as a highly effective and efficient route to a rewarding career.

According to a recent survey, 62 percent of Americans believe apprenticeships and other on-the-job training programs make workers more employable than a college degree.

About seven in 10 U.S. adults say learning a specific trade is better for finding a job than a bachelor’s degree (68 percent) and that college degrees aren’t worth as much as they used to be (69 percent).

A majority disagree that completing an apprenticeship will limit one’s future employment options (71 percent) and that earn-while-learning programs generally lead to a lower salary than occupations requiring a college degree (60 percent).

Today, the apprenticeship model is expanding to include a much wider range of career pathways.

Structured coaching relationships and mentor-ships in many corporate businesses embody the spirit of apprenticeship: an experienced worker passing on his or her knowledge, skills, and expertise to a worker new to the field.

What apprenticeships bring to workers—and companies

Most people would prefer to learn by actively doing something rather than by passively hearing it. (This is one shortcoming of the current learning model prevalent in America’s college culture, where 75-minute lectures and copious note-taking are often the order of the day.)

Today’s younger generations, whom I call the Why Generation due to their innately inquisitive nature, live for experiences.

To them, experience is everything. A learning-by-doing model plays to this strength and can engage Generations Y and Z at a much deeper level than lecture-driven methods.

Learning by doing isn’t a new concept. A quote sometimes attributed to Benjamin Franklin (himself once an apprentice to his brother in the printing trade) says: “Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.”

According to educator Edgar Dale, over a two-week period we remember only:

10 percent of what we read,

20 percent of what we hear,

30 percent of what we see,

50 percent of what we hear and see,

70 percent of what we say and write, and

90 percent of what we actually participate in.

Workers who don’t just learn, but actually experience their field will be infinitely better equipped to succeed in the work they’ve chosen. They will also benefit by completing their training at a fraction of the cost of many other post secondary training pathways.

Businesses that invest in apprenticeship training programs stand to reap the incalculable advantage of a carefully trained, skilled workforce that can deliver exactly what their ever-evolving market requires.

Apprenticeships also give firms the opportunity to start building a foundation of employee trust and loyalty in a world where 43 percent of millennial and 61 percent of Gen Z workers plan to leave their jobs within two years.

Making apprenticeship a path to the future

While recent survey results are encouraging, there is still much work to be done in high school guidance offices, in public awareness, and in legislative action to promote apprenticeships.

Apprenticeships are for anyone who wants to learn by doing, avoid significant educational debt, and get started in a rewarding, high-demand career. And with an increasing number of companies joining the apprenticeship movement, this once-old-fashioned training pathway is fast becoming a route to the future.

News Sources Commercial Real Estate Professionals Should Check Daily

News Sources Commercial Real Estate Professionals Should Check Daily

Information is king in commercial real estate. Each piece of data you consume may come in handy as you prospect new tenants or update your owners about recent leasing activity. But with so much information floating around, how do you prioritize what to read and what sources to trust?

Check out these Commercial Real Estate News Sources

Each offers great market insight, but they made our list for something unique:


Founded 15 years ago, GlobeSt.com specializes in doing in-depth interviews with thought leaders from around the industry. It’s a great way to keep a pulse on what individuals are thinking about different trends.


Bisnow made our list because it has a unique insight on trends thanks to its enormous event circuits. Subscribe to get updates for your specific market, or just peruse the national section. The Morning Digest pulls the biggest news of the last day or two from several different sources. It also doesn’t hurt that it’s written in a fun tone (almost never boring!).


To lump BizJournals into one publication is almost a disservice to this publication powerhouse. The media company fuels 42 different websites, 64 publications, and reaches over 10 million people a year. Bookmark your market-specific publication and get great insights about both the CRE industry and the overall market.

WSJ’s CRE Section:

The WSJ highlights large deals, changes by major players, and changing market dynamics. Although it might not help you lease any faster, it will definitely help you talk shop with owners.


National Real Estate Investors (NREI) does a particularly great job of synthesizing major trends (and fun listicles) into articles with effective takeaways.


Curbed offers a very bottoms-up perspective of major markets across the US by highlighting specific properties, spaces, and neighborhoods. Although it introduced a healthy dose of residential news into the mix, it can help you keep track of the overall trends of different cities and neighborhoods.

Commercial Property Executive:

CPE is an important read because it categorizes its articles by property type and business specialities, allowing you quickly find the insights you want.


Travis Barrington recently started cre.tech with the basic assumption that: “Technology is changing the commercial real estate business.” With that in mind, he covers and compiles the major technology trends (and companies) that are contributing to these revolution.

The News Funnel:

The News Funnel is the largest news and blog aggregator for the real estate industry. Founded in 2011, the platform has become a fountain of both unique and aggregated content, all relevant to CRE professionals. You can specify your choice markets or just see what’s trending.

What Landlords Need To Know About Selling A Tenant Occupied-Property

What Landlords Need To Know About Selling A Tenant Occupied-Property

The time has come to sell your tenant-occupied property. As a landlord, you care about your tenants and want to show them respect. Although the house they are living in is yours to sell, you always want to keep their best interest in mind throughout the sales process, as an angry tenant could slow down the selling process significantly. It is also important that you abide by the terms of the lease and do not violate any tenant agreements you have made.

The Month-To-Month Tenant

Let’s start with a best-case scenario: the month-to-month lease. Depending on the city and state you live in, this is typically the most flexible rental situation because the renter only needs about 30 to 60 days’ notice before they need to move out. It is important that you provide adequate notice to your tenant and abide by the terms of the rental agreement detailing the day their lease will end.

Although you as the landlord do have the ability to end a month-to-month lease without explanation and are not required to tell your tenant that your home is on the market, I strongly advise keeping them in the loop on your plans to sell. Keeping the tenant informed will most likely make them more inclined to assist you in the selling process and will be far easier on them than being forced out of their living space with little or no notice at the last minute.

Here is how I recommend proceeding:

  1. First, send a letter to your tenant advising them on the exact date their lease will end.
  2. Inform the tenant that they must be completely moved out and return the keys on or before the date specified in the letter.
  3. Make the tenant aware that if they do not move out, the eviction process will, unfortunately, be the next step.

The Fixed-Term Lease

A fixed-term lease can make the selling process a little bit lengthier than you might like. Assuming your tenant pays rent on time and doesn’t violate any terms of the lease agreement, he or she has the right to live on the property until the lease expires — unless there is an early termination clause. Unless you are in extenuating circumstances, I advise waiting until your tenant’s lease has expired before selling your property.

The Difficult Tenant

If you find yourself in the unfortunate situation of having a challenging tenant, I recommend waiting until the lease has ended to put your home on the market, as he or she could make the sales process very difficult.

An uncooperative tenant might leave the home messy when prospective buyers come by to see it, or they might refuse to leave the home during open houses, making the situation uncomfortable for everyone involved.

However, if they go beyond merely being difficult and go as far as violating any lease terms, you may have the ability to terminate the lease before it ends. The lease can be terminated if your tenant commits any of the following:

  • Fails to pay rent altogether (or continuously pays rent significantly late).
  • Engages in illegal activities on your property.
  • Causes major damage to your property.
  • Includes false information on their application.
  • Becomes a nuisance to neighbors.
  • Violates a non-pet clause, if applicable.

Rent Concession

Whether you have an easy-going or challenging tenant, I advise offering a discount on rent (such as offering a full or half month free). In return, work out a deal with the tenant so that they agree to keep the house clean for open houses, take any pets out of the house when prospective buyers visit and accommodate last-minute showing requests (within reason).

What if my tenant doesn’t want to leave?

There are a few options available to you and your tenant if they feel attached to the property:

  1. Sell your home to your tenant: Your tenant could turn out to be the ideal buyer. They know the home well and are already completely moved in. If your tenant is unable to obtain a mortgage, seller financing could be a feasible option. If you decide to go that route, you would act as both the seller and the lender, thereby letting your tenant make payments to you. Although this might not be the most ideal situation, it will spare you from having to go through the lengthy process of finding a buyer and waiting for your tenant’s lease to end.


  1. Pay your tenant to leave: If you are under a time constraint and need to sell your property as quickly as possible, it might be necessary to pay your tenant to vacate. This can include paying for the cost of movers, paying their security deposit for their new apartment or paying for a month’s rent in their new space.


  1. Sell to an investor: Finding an investor can be challenging, but if you do find someone who is willing to purchase the property while your tenant’s lease is still active, the investor must allow the tenant to remain in the home until their lease expires. In nearly every state, the security deposit and fixed-term lease are transferred with the property when it is sold, making the investor the new landlord.

If you’re selling a tenant-occupied property, you’ll want to be sure you take everything into consideration as your tenants can make selling either super easy or a nightmare for you. Sometimes offering perks — whether it’s financial concessions or even baked goods — can go a long way in them working to help you get your home sold.

Multifamily Borrowers Will Continue to Have Access to Multiple Capital Sources in 2019

Multifamily Borrowers Will Continue to Have Access to Multiple Capital Sources in 2019

Multifamily borrowers will have lots of choices on where to get permanent loans in the new year—despite worries about rising interest rates, high property prices and overbuilding.

“There is nothing out there that is going to create a lack of liquidity,” says Gerard Sansosti, executive managing director with capital markets services provider HFF.

Multifamily investors can get permanent loans from a growing list of lenders, including Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae lenders, banks and life companies. Many private equity fund managers have also created debt funds to provide loans on apartment properties.

“Rising rates aside, 2019 should feel the same as 2018 in terms of liquidity,” says Peter Donovan, executive managing director with CBRE’s capital markets multifamily group.

Debt funds provide ready money

Even developers whose new projects are taking too long to lease up can find loans to take out their construction loans. Many private equity fund managers have created debt funds that now provide bridge financing on apartment properties. “There are out there in force,” says Donovan. “They are the new unregulated lenders.”

These loans can cover up to 85 percent of the value of a property, with interest rates often floating at 275 to 300 basis points over the 30-day LIBOR.

Once the property has fully leased, the borrower can find convention permanent financing to take out most of the bridge loan, so the remainder of the bridge loans from the debt fund functions as a much smaller mezzanine loan. Value-add investors also use these debt funds to secure bridge financing for their properties.

Interest rates still low

The interest rates are still relatively low for permanent loans, despite two years of rate hikes from the Federal Reserve.

At the end of 2018, lenders offered all-in interest rates from 4.25 percent to 4.50 percent, for permanent loans from Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac programs that cover up to 75 percent of the value of a stabilized, fully-leased property. That’s up roughly half a percentage point from the end of 2017.

That increase is far below the rate hikes from Federal Reserve officials, who have been pushing their benchmark Fed funds rate higher by 25 basis points at a time for the last two years—from close to zero to well over 2.0 percent. The Fed is expected to raise its rates several more times in 2019.

To keep their all-in interest rates low, permanent lenders have cut their spreads—the amount that they add to their interest rates. The current interest rates from Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae work out to a spread over the yield on 10-year Treasury bonds of about 150 to 160 basis points.

The yields on Treasury bonds have also stayed low. The yield on 10-year Treasury bonds was about 2.7 percent in the last trading days of 2018. That’s only a little higher than in 2017 when the yield hovered in the mid-2-percent range. The Treasury bond yield has risen to over 3.0 percent for much of the fall but fell back as the stocks markets grew volatile at the end of the year.

Eventually, Treasury bond yields are likely to rise again. That will eventually push interest rates higher for permanent loans. “Rising rates start to pinch at 3.25 percent. Certainly, at 3.5 percent you are going to start to feel it in loan proceeds,” says CBRE’s Donovan.

New overseer for Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae

All the biggest lenders are expected to stay busy in 2019. Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae were still the biggest sources of capital for apartment loans in 2018, and are likely to hold onto that spot in 2019, despite having a new federal overseer in 2019.

Mel Watt will step down in 2019 as the leader of the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), the federal agency that regulates Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The new director of FHFA could hypothetically impose tighter restrictions on how much Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac can lend.

However, industry experts are positive about the nominee, Mark Calabria, who is currently an economic advisor to Vice President Mike Pence. “He absolutely understands the finance world for single-family and multifamily. He comes with great experience,” says Donovan.

Other leading capital sources, from banks to life insurance companies, remain active. Life companies continue to compete to make loans on the most desirable, class-A apartment properties, offering interest rates as low as 105 to 110 basis points over the yield on Treasury bonds for low-leverage loans. “They don’t seem to have any less capital available,” says Sansosti.

Conduits lenders and lenders that provide Federal Housing Administration loans also continue to be active.

Credit Reporting and Tenant Performance

Credit Reporting and Tenant Performance

One increasingly common question you will hear from prospective tenants is, “Do you report our payments to the credit bureau?” Sometimes this question is asked because the tenants are interested in building a good credit rating.

Other times, the tenants don’t want you to report because they are used to enjoying the benefits of paying the rent late without any derogatory feedback on their credit report.

It’s found that when a prospective tenant is warned that the landlord reports positive and negative information affecting the tenant’s credit, the rent becomes a priority.

Let all applicants know that if they value their good or clean credit, they must make the rent a top priority.

Ask the tenant not to sign a lease with us unless he or she is absolutely sure that paying the rent in a timely manner will be no problem.

Tell him that we would not want to see him ruin his excellent credit standing and damage his future creditworthiness when it comes to applying for a mortgage or other credit.

Once a tenant knows that his own actions will determine what information will go on his permanent record, the importance of paying the rent and honoring the agreement will be seen in a whole new light.

The Credit Reporting Disclosure Notice informs the tenants that you intend to report positive and negative payment history to the credit and tenant reporting bureaus.

You are not obligated to report, but you may. The form points out that the tenants’ history will be affected by their rent payment record, cleanliness and upkeep of the rental and the tenant’s overall performance.

That’s why you show them the Credit Reporting Disclosure Notice when I begin our lease signing session. A quality tenant normally sees it as an opportunity to maintain a great rent record.

Why the U.S. Economy Won’t Fail

Why the U.S. Economy Won’t Fail

In fact, the U.S. economy is doing fine. Here are the top 10 reasons why it won’t collapse. Included are rebuttals to the negativists’ claims.

The U.S. debt is $21 trillion, more than the economy produces in a year, but although the debt-to-GDP ratio is in the danger zone, it’s not enough to cause a collapse. First, the United States prints its money. That means it is in control of its currency.

Lenders feel safe that the U.S. government will pay them back. In fact, the United States could run a much higher debt-to-GDP ratio than it does now and still not face economic collapse. Japan is another strong economy that controls its currency. It has had a debt-to-GDP ratio above 200 percent for years. Its economy is sluggish but in no danger of collapse.

The United States won’t default on its debt. Most members of Congress realize a debt default would destroy America’s credibility in the financial markets. The tea party Republicans in Congress were a minority that threatened to default during the 2011 debt ceiling crisis and in 2013.

China and Japan are the biggest owners of the U.S. debt, but they have no incentive to create a collapse. The United States is their largest market. If it fails, so do their economies. Furthermore, China is not selling all of its dollar holdings. It has remained above $1 trillion since 2013. For more, see U.S. Debt to China.

If anything, the dollar would slowly decline instead of collapse. It fell 40 percent between 2002 and 2008. It has gotten stronger since then because of the financial crisis. Investors flock to ultra-safe U.S. Treasury’s and the U.S. dollar as a safe haven.

The dollar won’t be replaced as the world’s global currency. The doomsayers point to gold, the euro, or Bitcoin as a replacement for the dollar.

China has said it would like the yuan to replace the dollar. It’s true that the dollar’s value is supported by its role, but none of these other alternatives have enough circulation to replace the dollar.

The Fed’s quantitative easing program and low fed funds rate won’t cause hyperinflation. If anything, these programs have created a liquidity trap.

That’s when people, businesses, and banks hoard the extra cash instead of spending or lending it. The real cause of hyperinflation has been debt repayments to fund wars.

The stock market hit new highs in 2018. Stock prices are based on corporate earnings, so that’s a sign of business prosperity.

Consumer confidence hit an 18-year high in 2018. Consumer spending drives almost 70 percent of the economy.

Economic growth is slow but stable. Since the Great Recession, the economy has grown between 1.5 – 2.7 percent per year. According to business cycle theory, a bust only occurs after a boom. That’s when GDP is more than 3 percent. It hasn’t been that high since 2005 according to a review of GDP by year.

President Obama added to the debt to get us out of recession, not send us into collapse. Many of these doomsters accuse Obama of deliberately increasing the debt to destroy the United States.

What It Means to You

Before you run out to buy gold or stock up on canned goods, do two things. First, read the articles linked in the 10 points above. They will give you the facts the naysayers ignore. Or read “How the U.S. Economy Works.”

Second, see what a real economic collapse looks like. On September 17, 2008, the U.S. economy almost collapsed. That’s when companies pulled out trillions of dollars from money market accounts. It would have created a severe cash crunch had it continued.

The nation’s trucking industry would have ground to a halt. Gas stations would have gone dry. Grocery stores shelves would have gone empty. But those things didn’t happen because the Federal Reserve prevented the collapse. It guaranteed money market accounts and restored confidence.

Iceland’s economy collapsed in 2008. Its banks had defaulted on $62 billion of foreign debt. They had used the debt to finance foreign acquisitions. But Iceland’s entire gross domestic product was only $14 billion. When the banks defaulted, foreign investors fled. Within a week, the krona lost half its value. The stock market dropped 95 percent. That’s when almost every business in Iceland went bankrupt.

Although the Great Depression wasn’t a collapse, it was close. GDP fell by half. Global trade dropped almost two-thirds. Unemployment was 25 percent. What caused it? Government actions turned a recession into a depression.

First, the Fed used contractionary monetary policy like raising the fed funds rate to protect the gold standard. Congress cut back on spending as soon as the New Deal got the economy back on its feet and that contractionary fiscal policy brought back the depression in 1937. It didn’t end until the military build-up to World War II, but we aren’t headed for a second Great Depression.