marshalltimes february 2014
HOME STYLES THROUGH THE YEARS Winter of 1935-36
Mike Tupper: Combating identity theft
Bruce Wirin: Manage retirement income
A SPECIAL PUBLICATION OF THE
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marshalltimes Publisher ..............................Mike Schlesinger Managing Editor ..........................Abigail Pelzer Marshalltimes Writer ..................Mike Donahey Marshalltimes Columnists...........Debra Oetker, Kileen Rezac, Bruce Wirin, Mike Tupper Marshalltimes is a monthly magazine published by the Times-Republican, Marshalltown, with offices located at 135 W. Main St., Marshalltown, Iowa 50158. Marshalltimes is inserted into the Times-Republican monthly. For more information, please call or write:
Marshalltimes c/o Times-Republican 135 W. Main St. P.O. Box 1300 Marshalltown, IA 50158 641-753-6611 All articles and information contained herein are the property of the Times-Republican. Permission for use or reproduction must have prior approval in writing from the publisher.
THE PULSE hotels and hospitals. Farmers were caught in town and could not get to their homes. The Veterans Memorial Coliseum was opened as a refuge to families without coal. When summer came it too, was cruel. MARSHALLTIMES STAFF WRITER An all-time high of 112 degrees was registered on July 15 that same Since Punxsatawney into April, or later, as wit- the June 6, 1949 Times- year. Crops, of course, were Phil predicted six more nessed by the freak Republican, in its “50 weeks of winter on Feb. snowstorm which hit Mar- Years of Progress in Mar- badly damaged by the intense heat. 2, the weather has been, shalltown early last May. shalltown.” More research and continues to be, a Enough snow fell to There was a period of frequent topic of conver- bring out boots, shovels, 133 consecutive hours revealed that the summer sation. snow-blowers and city that winter when it of 1901 established some “Iʼm getting tired of plows. remained below zero. records as well. daytime highs of 5 above Area seniors and Railroad lines were There were 31 conzero,” said Pete Rogers Times-Republican blocked with snow drifts secutive days the therof Marshalltown recently. archives though, remind and freight trains could mometer registered Rogers has plenty of us that this winter has not get make it into town above 100 degrees and company, and even the been mild compared to with coal, then the heatno rain fell. hardiest of central the record-setting one of ing fuel of choice for The top reading was Iowans must be looking 1935-36. many a Marshalltown 108 degrees, the highest forward to March 20, the On Feb. 5, 1936, the household. ever known to Marshallfirst day of spring. thermometer nose-dived The Lennox Furnace town at that time. But anyone who has to 32 degrees below Co. closed its factory ——— lived in Iowa knows winzero, an all time low for down for one week to Contact Mike Donahey at 641-753ter can pack a punch well Marshalltown, reported make coal available to 6611 or email@example.com
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TUPPER MARSHALLTOWN POLICE CHIEF
How you can protect yourself from identity theft Identity theft is one of those crimes that most people donʼt think about until they become a victim. It is one of the easiest crimes for offenders to get away with and one of the toughest crimes for police to solve. Identity thieves quickly learn that stealing identities is not only easy to do, but can also be very profitable.
you did not buy.
Preventing Identity Theft
To protect you from identity theft, the Federal Trade Commission and other identity security experts suggest Americans follow these general guidelines: • Keep your confidential information private. Your bank or credit card company wonʼt call or e-mail to ask for your account information. They already have it. Signs of Identity Theft • Donʼt give out your What are the signs of personal information over having your identity the telephone, through the stolen? These are several mail or via the Internet the Federal Trade Comunless you have initiated mission said to look for: contact. • Unexplained charges • Secure personal inforor withdrawals from your mation in your home. financial accounts. • Utilize passwords for • Failure to receive bills your credit card, bank, or other mail. This could and phone accounts – mean an identity thief has avoid using easily availsubmitted a change of able information like your address for your accounts motherʼs maiden name, or perhaps even stolen your own birth date, some mail from your mail- the last four digits of your box. Social Security number, or • Receiving credit cards your phone number. for which you did not • Ask about the inforapply. mation security proce• Denial of credit for no dures at the places that apparent reason. collect personal • Receiving calls from identifying information debt collectors or compa- about you – like your nies about merchandise or employer, doctorʼs offices, services and other
businesses. Find out who has access to your information and verify that it is handled securely. • Keep an inventory of everything you store in your wallet or purse including bank or credit account numbers. • Monitor your bank and credit card transactions for unauthorized use. • If you conduct business online, use your own computer. A public computer is less secure, as is wireless Internet. • Donʼt store credit card numbers and other financial information on your cell phone. If you think you have been a victim of identity theft, you should immediately notify your bank, credit card companies and any other creditor you believe may be impacted. It is also vitally important that you report these crimes to the police immediately. The Marshalltown Police Department has helpful resources available that will assist you as you navigate through this complicated event. If you have any questions about identity theft, please feel free to contact me at 641754-5771 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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C O V E R
S T O R Y
The Adams family residence, 2804 Jessup Ave., near Melbourne, is an example of a pre-cut home.
Home styles through the years By MIKE DONAHEY
If possible, Nancy Adams of rural Melbourne would go back in time nearly 114 years ago and have a conversation with the late James A. Easley, a Virginia land speculator who first owned the lot her house was built upon. Easley not only owned neighboring parcels, he held title to thousands of acres throughout the Untied States, according to Adams. She would also welcome the opportunity to talk to the homeʼs first owner, and watch the house being built. What makes Adamsʼ home unique is that the two story wood frame house was pre-cut, perhaps in a factory east of the Mississippi, and delivered by rail, as was
the custom then. But history aside, Adams said she was first attracted to the home 18 years ago. And the love affair has continued. “Initially, and still, itʼs the aesthetics of the place,” she said. “Then, thereʼs the quality. From the doorknobs to the heating registers to the baseboards, itʼs all good stuff. And itʼs a strong house. Sure, sometimes it sways a bit with the wind, like the trees of which itʼs built, but thatʼs why she still stands.” Currently, the house is home to Adams and her husband, a dog and two cats. Her son grew up there but lives on his own now. “And lastly, itʼs what weʼve learned from living here,” she said. “Iʼd never considered how Iowa, a native prairie
state could have so many frame houses, nor how homes in the country, and indeed, many in the suburbs of Chicago that I hail from were built. But now I know.” From pre-cut houses ordered from catalogs to Lustronʼs pre-fabricated metal homes back to traditional stickbuilt, Marshall Countyʼs housing trends since the 1900s has been dictated by population shifts westward, World War II and consumer demands. Richard Warren Sears, founder of Sears, Roebuck & Co., of Chicago, was skilled at understanding consumer needs, and the company was one of a number who sold pre-cut homes not only to urban dwellers, but especially to those west of the Mississippi. It stood to reason. In 1861, only 14 percent of the popu-
lation lived west of the Mississippi River; by 1890 it had increased to 27 percent, according to Rebecca Hunter and Dale Wolicki. The two wrote the preface to “Sears, Roebuck Book of Barns: A Reprint of the 1919 Catalog.” Hunter and Wolicki wrote: “These well designed, practical homes were made of top quality materials. Lumber and hardware were purchased in bulk, and the structural elements were cut to exact size at the mill and shipped to the customer by rail.” A burgeoning rail industry made delivery of pre-cut homes possible to towns large and small, and to remote rural areas throughout the United States. “Parts of a typical home filled two boxcars, and included approximately 10,000 numbered pieces of lumber, kegs of
S T O R Y
T-R PHOTO BY MIKE DONAHEY
Shown is a home in the second Lennox addition, a large tract initiated by the late D.W. Norris.
the completion of the Lennox addition. Consequently, D.W. Norris, desiring to do something special for his hometown, planned a second Lennox addition, south of the first, and to be built by the T-R. He planned 110 high quality houses of frame construction to be sold at cost. Work was started in the summer of 1948 on 57 houses, on the east half of the addition, between 14th and 18th Avenues. Prices of the first 57 houses ranged from $11,000 to $13,100. Another 50 houses were planned for the west edition. At approximately 114 years, the Adams pre-cut is the oldest of the three styles, and she admits it is “a lot of house for just us, but gratefully, we have a steady stream of friends and family who, over the years, have built their own connection to the place and we are happy about that,” she said. “Itʼs a place to be shared. Seriously, I regularly hug the door jambs upon leaving. I canʼt help it. We are lucky to be stewards of this place.” ——— Contact Mike Donahey at 641-7536611 or email@example.com
Marshalltown Chamber of Commerce established a trailer camp east of Anson Park in March 1946. It was still in use more than three years later. Lennox Furnace Co., as it was known then, responded to the call and announced a new addition to the south and east of T-R PHOTO BY MIKE DONAHEY the companyʼs plant, Pictured is one of the many homes in the original Lennox Addition, built after World War II by the Lennox Fur- where they proposed to erect more than 50 housnace Co., now Lennox Industries. The Lennox Industries Marshalltown plant is in the background. es, which were to be offered for sale, first to nails and other hardware, until after World War II, and erection of a Lustron throughout Marshalltown. company employees, vetroofing tar and shingles, when government regulahouse, which contained The Lustron homes are erans and then to the pubpaint and varnish, and tions, tract housing conover 3,300 parts. readily identifiable, practi- lic. blueprints and instructions. struction methods, and The homes were discal one story designs with The plan called for Manufacturers claimed the increased popularity of tributed through a network distinctive yellow steel mass building on a 12pre-cut system would save prefabricated and mobile of Lustron builder-dealers panels. acre tract east of South the builder up to 30 perhousing meant that most franchised to erect houses The onset of World War 12th Avenue, with the plat cent compared to the cost pre-cut housing companies within a geographical II and the demand for mili- showing 59 lots, on which of standard building meth- could no longer survive. area. tary supplies and civilian 52 houses were to be ods. In the day before In the 1950s, seven The Meadowbrook and goods caught Marshallerected of brick, with eight home power tools, pre-cut Marshalltown homeowners Newport models were town with every abode lots reserved for parking. homes represented an saw value in the prefabripriced at approximately filled and an urgent The first 16 houses were enormous saving in labor cated styles manufactured $2,000 to attract then mid- demand for workerʼs living built in 1946 and the initial and materials for the home by the Lustron Co., a dle-class and lower midquarters, reported the 10 were quickly sold to builder. Columbus, Ohio firm. dle-class customers. The “Fifty Years of Progress in company employees at Catalog prices typically The skeleton of the higher-end Westchester Marshalltown,” published cost under Federal Housincluded only the building house is made of steel model included dishwash- by the Times-Republican, ing Administration terms. materials; cost of the finframing, factory-welded er/clothes washer and June 6, 1949. Streets were laid out, ished house, including the into wall sections and roof built-in vanity, bookcase Property values had curbs, gutters and sidelot, the foundation, and trusses. Porcelain finish and china-cabinet passsoared and rentals kept walks constructed, and construction labor was steel panels cover the through. pace with the upturn until water, sewer and gas usually double the catalog roof, exterior and interior Mike Vogt, former the advent of federal rent mains installed. price. Heating, plumbing walls. director at the Historical control. Shanties that had In 1947 the balance of and electric systems were The straightforward Society of Marshall Coun- not been lived in for years the 52 houses were built available at additional description, however, ty, initially researched the were turned into living and occupied. cost.” belied the complexity trend locally and identified quarters and trailer camps The demand for housPre-cut housing thrived behind the manufacture seven homes located were established. The ing was still strong despite
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C O V E R
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INVESTMENT CORNER traditional IRA or 401(k) might be a better choice, due to the cumulative tax deductions you took at a higher tax rate. But if your tax bracket will be the same, or higher, during retirement, then the value of tax-free distributions FINANCIAL ADVISOR from a Roth IRA or 401(k) EDWARD JONES INVESTMENTS may outweigh the benefits of the tax deductions cept of tax diversification, potentially be tax-free, youʼll need to be familiar provided you meet certain youʼd get from a traditional with how two of the most conditions. (Keep in mind, IRA or 401(k). So making the choice important retirement-sav- though, that to contribute between “traditional” and ings vehicles — an IRA to a Roth IRA, you canʼt “Roth” could be tricky. But and a 401(k) — are taxed. exceed designated hereʼs the good news: Essentially, these income limits. Also, not all You donʼt necessarily accounts can be classified employers offer the Roth have to choose, at least as either “traditional” or option for 401(k) plans.) not with your IRA. Thatʼs “Roth.” Of course, “tax free” because you may be able When you invest in a sounds better than “tax to contribute to both a tratraditional IRA or 401(k), deferred,” so you might your contributions may be think that a Roth option is ditional IRA and a Roth tax-deductible and your always going to be prefer- IRA, assuming you meet earnings can grow tax able. But thatʼs not neces- the Rothʼs income guidedeferred. With a Roth IRA sarily the case. If you think lines. This allows you to benefit from both the tax or 401(k), your contribuyour tax bracket will be deductions of the traditiontions are not deductible, lower in retirement than but your distributions can when you were working, a
Use tax diversification to manage retirement income You need to save and invest as much as possible to pay for the retirement lifestyle youʼve envisioned. But your retirement income also depends, to a certain degree, on how your retirement funds are taxed. And thatʼs why you may be interested in tax diversification. To understand the con-
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al IRA and the potential tax-free distributions of the Roth IRA. And once you retire, this “tax diversification” can be especially valuable. Why? Because when you have money in different types of accounts, you gain flexibility in how you structure your withdrawals — and this flexibility can help you potentially increase the amount of your after-tax disposable income. If you have a variety of accounts, with different tax treatments, you could decide to first make your required withdrawals (from a traditional IRA and 401(k) or other employersponsored plan), followed, in order, by withdrawals from your taxable investment accounts, your taxdeferred accounts and, finally, your tax-free
accounts. Keep in mind, though, that you may need to vary your actual sequence of withdrawals from year to year, depending on your tax situation. For example, it might make sense to change the order of withdrawals, or take withdrawals from multiple accounts, to help reduce taxes and avoid moving into a different tax bracket. Clearly, tax diversification can be beneficial. So after consulting with your tax and financial advisors, consider ways of allocating your retirement plan contributions to provide the flexibility you need to maximize your income during your retirement years. This article was written by Edward Jones for use by your local Edward Jones Financial Advisor.
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Financial New Year’s resolution This year, more than half of Americans will make New Yearʼs resolutions affecting heir financial lives. That is an increase of 54 percent since 2009. When it comes to New Yearʼs resolutions, more Americans are including financial goals. The annual Fidelity New Year Financial Resolutions Study found that although long-term financial goals are still the top financial priority of Americans, short-term goals gained significant traction among survey respondents this year. In general, more than half (54 percent) of Americans said they typically consider making resolutions that affect their finance — up from 35 percent who reported this in 2009. And, for the third year in a row, the top three financial resolutions among those who are considering making a financial resolution for 2014 are saving more (54 percent) paying off debt (24 percent), and spending less (19 percent). Among those who indicated that saving more was one of their goals for 2014, long-term financial goals continued to lead short-term goals, however the gap between the two narrowed considerably this year (53 percent versus 39 percent). The top long-term savings goals was saving for retirement in a tax-deferred account (55 percent), followed by saving for college (35 percent) and saving for retiree health care costs (28 percent). The top short term savings goals included building an emergency fund (57 percent) and paying down debt
(46 percent), while saving for luxury items such as a boat or a vehicle has dropped dramatically over the past few years from 19 percent in 2010 to 6 percent this year. Nearly half of Americans said that ongoing uncertainty around the economy, the debt ceiling battles, and the potential of higher interest rates may deter their efforts to keep their 2014 financial resolutions. And, 39 percent of those polled believe that financial resolutions are easier to keep than other common resolutions such as stopping smoking, weight loss or finding a new job — up from 28 percent in 2012. Among other notable survey findings, 48 percent of Americans feel their taxes will be higher in 2014 as a result of the fiscal cliff tax law that was passed last year. And just as many are concerned about health care costs going forward. The comment of health care most widely relayed was the “uncertainty.” As with any resolution, keeping true to that resolution goal is key. You may want to consider setting up a systematic purchase into an investment account from a checking or savings account on a monthly basis. This way you know your investment will happen and you are taking advantage of dollar cost averaging. Our website address is rezaccfp.finlsite.com (Sage-Point Financial, Inc.). It has information from life event articles and financial calculators to market summaries and Eseminars. Please visit it and donʼt forget to add your favorites, If you have comments, suggestions, or accolades, please let us know.
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Often investors find that a significant portion of their assets may have accumulated in one particular stock. Perhaps you have a long career working for the same company, or you may have acquired stock through inheritance. If this is the case, it is easy to reach the point where this single holding is sizable enough that you may want to evaluate your situation and consider a range of strategies around the stock. There are several alternatives for managing concentrated stock positions. However, such recommendations really depend on your individual circumstances and the particulars of your financial and tax situations. Another variable is whether you are an employee or a corporate insider. If you are a corporate insider – if in doubt, contact your corporate counsel – you may be subject to certain legal and company considerations for disposing of your company stock. You and your Financial Advisor should work with your legal and tax professionals to help evaluate possible strategies. The list of tools or alternatives for managing a concentrated equity position may include: — Gradually selling and repositioning. — Hedging alternatives for managing risk. — Estate planning and charitable techniques. Borrowing against your stock? Often a combination of strategies is an optimal solution. You can earmark a certain portion to sell, to hedge, and to help meet your tax and philanthropic goals. Sometimes the simplest solution is
best. You can gradually sell shares and reinvest the proceeds into other investments. Selling over time may help you spread your gain or loss over time as well as the attendant tax impacts and help diversify and better control your financial situation. Other strategies, such as hedging or establishing a charitable remainder trust, can be combined with this strategy. Your Financial Advisor can help you evaluate the variations of this approach. Certain hedging strategies let you control your exposure to any one stock and help you control downside risk. With a substantial position in one stock, you may look for strategies that will help reduce your overall income and estate tax liabilities and help you achieve your philanthropic goals. There are charitable giving strategies that can provide you with a current income tax deduction, create a continuing source of income for you or possibly your heirs, and provide a way to avoid paying current capital gains tax on appreciated assets. A simple tax-efficient way to benefit the charitable organizations you support is to consider making your annual charitable gifts or pledges with appreciated stock instead of cash. You will conserve your cash while avoiding the taxable capital gains you would create by selling the stock. Determining which of these solutions is appropriate for your circumstances requires an in-depth evaluation of the stock you own, any restrictions you may be subject to, your financial position, and your objectives. Consult with your Financial Advisor, who can consult the team of professionals at his or her firm to help evaluate your situation and provide you with a range of strategies to consider in view of your financial goals.
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