MONEY

Germany vs. Argentina in 9 Numbers

When the World Cup ends on Sunday, we'll know whether Germany or Argentina can claim victory. In the meantime, here's a look at how the residents of Berlin and Buenos Aires win and lose financially.

MONEY

US vs. Germany in 9 Numbers

The American and German all-star soccer players share the World Cup stage today, but off the field their lives are far from uniform, particularly when it comes to money. Here's a look at how residents of each country win and lose financially. If this faceoff is any indication, today's game should be a nail-biter.

MONEY Kids and Money

10 Celebs (Besides Sting) Who Cut Their Kids Out of their Wills

The former Police frontman made headlines when he said his kids won't get trust funds; these other millionaires and billionaires have also decided that their offspring won't inherit 100%.

Musician Sting
Sting doesn’t want his money to be “albatrosses” around his kids’ necks. Carlo Allegri—Reuters

So much for fields of gold. Looks like the six children of pop singer Sting won’t be getting much out of their old man, whose estimated worth has been placed at around $300 million.

The 62-year-old musician didn’t put this message in a bottle: He told the press. In an interview published this past weekend in England’s Mail on Sunday newspaper, Sting—f.k.a. Gordon Sumner—explained that he wasn’t planning on leaving any trust funds for his progeny. “I told them there won’t be much money left because we are spending it,” the paper reported him saying.

Beyond explaining that much of his money is already committed, the former Police frontman also said he wouldn’t want an inheritance to be “albatrosses round their necks.”

“Obviously, if they were in trouble I would help them,” he added. “But I’ve never really had to do that. They have the work ethic that makes them want to succeed on their own merit.”

He’s not the only celebrity who has decided against giving his entire fortune to his kids. Below are 10 other boldface names who’ve either said they’ll write their kids out of their wills or give them only a small slice of their very big pies. (Many of these folks are disinheriting their kids for humanitarian reasons.)

Of course, you don’t have to have mega-bucks to be concerned about how your kids will handle an inheritance. A fairly recent survey from WealthCounsel found that 35% of people are crafting their estate plans to avoid mismanagement of money by their heirs. But if that’s your worry, keep in mind that there are things you can do to ensure that your kid doesn’t squander your hard-earned funds.

  • Bill Gates

    Bill Gates
    Bill Gates Lucas Jackson—Reuters

    Estimated net worth: $78.6 billion

    On a Reddit “Ask Me Anything,” the Microsoft founder said that he thinks leaving his kids massive amounts of money would be no favor to them. Inspired by Warren Buffett, he plans to leave the vast majority of his fortune to charity—he has his own, The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. With Buffett, he has has encouraged other billionaires to give away their wealth.

  • Warren Buffett

    Investor Warren Buffett
    Warren Buffett Lucas Jackson—Reuters

    Estimated net worth: $65.1 billion

    The Berkshire Hathaway boss man hasn’t been shy about his distaste for leaving an inheritance to his family members. “I’m not an enthusiast for dynastic wealth, particularly when 6 billion others have much poorer hands than we do in life,” he reportedly said at a 2006 event following his announcement to donate the vast majority of his fortune. Since then, Buffett has pledged to give away a full 99% of his money to charity, and has encouraged other billionaires to give away at least 50% of their wealth through The Giving Pledge.

  • Michael Bloomberg

    140623_FF_Sting_Bloomberg
    Michael Bloomberg Carlo Allegri—Reuters

    Estimated net worth: $34 billion

    The former Mayor of New York City, who made his fortune as owner of the financial information company that bears his name and who has two daughters in their 30s, signed Buffett’s and Gates’s Giving Pledge. In his letter, he said, “If you want to do something for your children and show how much you love them, the single best thing—by far—is to support organizations that will create a better world for them and their children.” The Bloomberg Philanthropic Foundation donates to various causes, ranging from health care to literacy.

  • Pierre Omdiyar

    EBay founder and chairman Pierre Omidyar
    Pierre Omidyar Tim Shaffer—Reuters

    Estimated net worth: $7.6 billion

    The eBay founder and father of three stated in 2001 that he and his wife would give away the vast majority of their wealth during their lives. “We have more money than our family will ever need,” he has written. “There’s no need to hold onto it when it can be put to use today, to help solve some of the world’s most intractable problems.” He and his wife started the Humanity United Foundation which supports anti-slavery nonprofits.

  • George Lucas

    Director George Lucas
    George Lucas Jean-Paul Pelissier—Reuters

    Estimated net worth: $4.9 billion

    After selling the Star Wars franchise to Disney for $4.5 billion in 2012, George Lucas—father to four—said that the proceeds from the sale would be donated towards improving education. That echoed his commitment to give up the majority of his wealth in his 2012 Giving Pledge letter: “As long as I have the resources at my disposal, I will seek to raise the bar for future generations of students of all ages.”

  • Ted Turner

    Turner Enterprises Inc. Chairman Ted Turner
    Ted Turner Phil McCarten—Reuters

    Estimated net worth: $2.2 billion

    In 1990, Turner set up the Turner Foundation, which gives grants on environmental causes, as a family foundation so that his children could also be involved in charitable work. He then launched the United Nations Foundation with an initial pledge of $1 billion back in 1997. The media mogul writes, “At the time of my death, virtually all my wealth will have gone to charity.”

  • Simon Cowell

    Judge Simon Cowell
    Simon Cowell Mario Anzuoni—Reuters

    Estimated net worth: $500 million

    Last year, the X Factor judge and music mogul, who has a 16-month-old son, told the press that he doesn’t believe in passing on wealth from one generation to another. Rather, he plans to leave his money to charity, likely benefiting “kids and dogs.”

  • Kevin O’Leary

    Television personality and businessman Kevin O'Leary
    Kevin O'Leary Gus Ruelas—Reuters

    Estimated net worth: $300 million

    The Canadian businessman and investor, known for being a judge on the ABC series Shark Tank, said in an interview that he isn’t planning on passing any wealth on to his kids. “If you don’t start out your life with the fear of not being able to feed yourself and your family, then what motivates you to go get a job?” he said. “Fear motivated me, and it will motivate them.” He said that once they’re educated, he’ll kick his kids out of the nest, though he says he will set up generation-skipping trusts for his grandkids and great grandkids.

  • Jackie Chan

    Actor Jackie Chan
    Jackie Chan Eric Gaillard—Reuters

    Estimated net worth: $140 million

    The 60-year-old actor has said that he will leave his wealth to charity, and none of it to his son. “He can make his own money,” he reportedly told the press. Chan is a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, campaigns against animal abuse and started the Jackie Chan Charitable Foundation, which supports education and disaster relief.

  • Nigella Lawson

    Nigella Lawson
    Nigella Lawson Stefan Wermuth—Reuters

    Estimated net worth: $15 million

    The celebrity chef, who divorced advertising tycoon Charles Saatchi last year, reportedly told the British magazine My Weekly that once her kids finish college, they will have to work and support themselves. “I am determined that my children should have no financial security,” she was quoted as saying. “It ruins people not having to earn money.” But she denies that they’ll be cut out of her will entirely, saying she has no plans to leave them destitute and starving.

MONEY house hunt

‘It Took 3 Years To Find a Home in a Good School District:’ A Buyer’s Story

Paul and Cassie Wilcoxes' new home in the Morningside neighborhood of Atlanta. Courtesy: Zillow

The Wilcoxes struggled with the classic parents' dilemma: Move to an expensive home in a great school district, or stay put and pay for private school?

All Paul and Cassie Wilcox wanted was a home in a good school district in Atlanta. Three years, numerous house hunting drives and an emotional appeal later, the Wilcox family is finally ready to move into their new home in the Morningside neighborhood of Atlanta. This is the story of their House Hunt.

They grappled with a classic dilemma: staying in an affordable neighborhood with poor schools or moving to a good school district with pricier homes.

The neighborhood we lived in didn’t have a a great public school system. So, as soon as our son, Connor was born, we started looking for homes in neighborhoods with good public schools. There aren’t a whole lot of those in Atlanta. We considered staying where we were but private schools are expensive as college. So we decided to move out.

They settled on their neighborhood, but it took a year to find a home that suited their budget.

We would drive out to Morningside often, surveying the place and just looking at houses. Finally we figured that being in the car all the time wasn’t going to work out and we had to make up our mind. (Notes their agent Danielle Coats, “It usually takes only three to four months to find a house.”)

Be Featured Here: Tell Us Your Home Buying Story!

Financially, things came together, though it’s a stretch.

My software business took off right about the time we planned to move. That gave us the confidence that we could do it. I now work two jobs — one as a systems architect at a financial services firm and my own firm.

Then they had to win the actual house.

It’s a very competitive area. We knew we had to make an aggressive offer and offered full price only to find out that we were up against four all-cash offers. We decided to write a nice letter to the seller, who was a kind, elderly woman. We told her that we wanted our son to go a good school and make the home special and raise our family there. And, it worked. We got a response in 10 days and another two weeks to close.

The list price was $469,900 and I was able to put down 28% of that.

They actually sold their house in October (for $245,000) and had to rent for three months while working on the new home.

Properties in Morningside have a good resale value. I know that if I were to sell my house tomorrow, I’ll make a profit.

More House Hunts:
‘At 27, I’m the First of My Friends to Own a Home’
‘I Have $1M in Investments and I Couldn’t Get a Mortgage’

MONEY Housing Market

The Future’s Most Walkable Cities: Prepare to Be Surprised

061417_REA_boston
Urbanization of next-door neighbor Cambridge is one of the chief reasons Boston's walkability is on the rise. Boston Harbor Association—Boston Harbor Association

Walkable urban places are the cities of the future, a new study says. And where will those be? New York, Boston? Try Miami and Phoenix. No, we're not kidding.

If you live in Washington D.C., New York City or Boston and your legs are your main mode of transport, this won’t be news to you: These three cities rank among the country’s most walkable large cities, and they are destined to remain so.

After those top three, watch out: Cities known more for suburban sprawl and traffic jams have new development planned that will shoot them up into the top scores as “walkable urban place,” or, WalkUPs, as researchers at George Washington University and advocacy group Smart Growth America call them.

Miami, Detroit, Denver, and Tampa will vault into the new Top 10 large WalkUPs, according to a new study released today. Atlanta, Los Angeles and Phoenix will also take a big leap forward. Future rankings are based on things like planned investment in public transportation and commercial clusters.

jefferson memorial
D.C. ranks No. 1. Its suburbs are as walkable as the central city. Destination DC—Destination DC

“The WalkUPs are witnessing the end of sprawl,” said Christopher Leinberger, a professor of urban real estate at George Washington University School of Business. “This is a change in how we built the country in the 20th century.” Suburban sprawl, he argues, has constrained the country’s economic growth.

Walkable urban places, sometimes referred to as urban burbs, have high concentrations of college-educated adults and demonstrate a strong correlation between urban development, education and economic growth. Office rents in urbanized areas, for example, command a 74% premium over suburban. (Researchers focused on the 30 largest metropolitan areas because they comprise 46% of the U.S. population and 58% of the country’s GDP.)

And homeowners, take note: Walkability and proximity to shopping, restaurants and work are becoming increasingly important to buyers, especially young buyers. Research has shown that increases in measures of walkability such as WalkScore translate into increased property values.

Today’s Top 15 Walkable Cities

1. Washington, D.C.
2. New York City
3. Boston
4. San Francisco
5. Chicago
6. Seattle
7. Portland, Ore.
8. Atlanta
9. Pittsburgh
10. Cleveland
11. Baltimore
12. Miami
13. Philadelphia
14. Denver
15. Houston
Least Walkable: Tampa, Phoenix, Orlando

The Future’s Most Walkable Cities

1. Boston
2. Washington, D.C.
3. New York City
4. Miami
5. Atlanta
6. Seattle
7. San Francisco
8. Detroit
9. Denver
10. Tampa
11. Los Angeles
12. Phoenix
13. Houston
14. Portland
15. Chicago
Least Walkable: San Diego, Kansas City, San Antonio

MONEY house hunt

‘At 27, I’m the First of My Friends to Own a Home:’ A Buyer’s Story

Nathan Davenport's condo in the Buckhead neighborhood of Atlanta. Courtesy of Zillow

At 27, Nathan Davenport seems to have most of what he wants -- a steady job, a girlfriend and even his own home.

When Nathan Davenport moved from Birmingham to Atlanta three years ago, he was fairly certain he wanted to make Atlanta his home for at least a while. So the sales associate with AT&T recently closed on a condo in the Buckhead neighborhood of Atlanta, two blocks from a new mega-development bringing 80 high-end retailers to the area by the end of the year. Just shy of 27 and single, Davenport is the first among his friends to own a home. This is the story of his House Hunt.

He knew exactly what he wanted.

I knew that I am not going to change my job anytime soon. I knew that I wanted to be around people and have stuff to do. Buckhead seemed really attractive with all the stores coming for the first time. I wanted grocery stores and restaurants within walking distance, like in New York. And, I knew that I did not need a lot of space.

I figured property rates will go up, which also motivated me to buy a condo in the neighborhood. And the commute to work is an ideal 15 minutes.

Although he was looking at condos, he did not want to compromise on amenities.

I wanted hardwood floors and granite kitchen tops. And, this might sound weird coming from a guy — but a walk-in closet. I definitely wanted one. I did not like the modern open bedroom, loft-like apartments that I saw.

Once he found his ideal condo, he waited five months for the exact unit to become available.

I started looking at places in August last year and purchased the place in April this year. The unit with the floor plan I wanted had just sold out, and it took five months for another one to get on the market. As soon as it did, I put in my bid, even without actually looking at the unit.

He bid the asking price of $205,000. But then …

The appraisal valued it at $190,000. I changed my bid to $195,000 and closed the deal. I put down 5%, most of what I had saved and the rest is financed through a mortgage.

I wouldn’t say I want to live here long-term. When I get married, I might want to move out. I will rent out this place then. I might think of buying my next house in five to eight years. But I definitely want to stay in Atlanta, preferably in this neighborhood.

MONEY Savings

Millennials Are Saving, But Men Are Saving More. Here’s Why.

Among young adults, a savings gender gap is starting early. Are you ahead or behind?

You’ve probably heard that Millennials are doing better than previous generations in saving for retirement—those who landed jobs, anyway. But here’s something you may not have heard so much about: young men are saving significantly more than young women.

That’s the finding from a new Wells Fargo survey on Millennial savings habits, which found that overall 55% of young adults are saving for retirement. But that number disguises a wide gender gap. More than 60% of men are stashing money away, compared with just 50% of women.

“We were surprised to see the gap in this generation, when they have such similar profiles,” said Karen Wimbish, director of retail retirement at Wells Fargo. She points to the relatively few number of women in high-paying positions as a key reason for the disparity. For college-educated Millennial men, the median household income is $77,000, according to the survey; for women, it’s $63,000. (Those figures are similar to 2012 data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which found that women ages 20 to 24 earn just 89% the median earnings of their male counterparts.)

Given that difference in pay, it’s not that surprising that 26% of young men manage to save more than 10% of their incomes, compared with just 9% of women. The majority of women surveyed (53%) put away only 1% to 5% of their pay.

For both men and women, debt loads are making it more difficult to save. Some 40% of Millennials say they feel overwhelmed by debt. Nearly half say more than 50% of their pay is going toward debt repayment, and 56% “live from paycheck to paycheck,” the survey reported. The largest payments were owed to credit cards (16% of debt), followed by mortgages (15%), student loans (12%), auto loans (9%), and medical bills (5%).

Still, paying off debt, especially high-interest credit-card balances, can be a smart move, even if it delays saving, says Dan Weeks, a financial planner at Sound Stewardship in Overland Park, Kansas. But for many Millennials, those payments are likely to slow their ability to buy a house and start a family.

One bright spot: Millennials are becoming less risk averse—nearly one-third are invested in the stock market. Among college-educated young men, median financial assets, including stocks and bonds, were $58,500; for women, $31,400. And more than two-thirds of Millennial expect their life after retirement to be better than that of their parents. They could be right about that.

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