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Skimm Money: Nepo Homebuyers, Chocolate Inflation, and Charging Kids Rent

editor's note

I buy lotto tickets sometimes. Well, only when the jackpot is over a billion dollars. One extremely lucky person won the $1.13 Mega Millions jackpot this week, and it looks like the Powerball could hit over $1 billion if no one wins tomorrow. Now, of course, I know my chances of winning are a kajillion-to-one, but I like to spend $2 on the temporary fantasy. Then, when I lose (and come back down to earth), I can think more realistically about what *achievable* financial freedom means for me.

— AJ Cohen / Money Editor / Brooklyn, NY

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Get answers straight from the career and finance pros.

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We asked you to vote on a question you'd like answered. The winner was:

Should I be waiting to buy a house?


Bianca D’Alessio

Bianca D’Alessio

Licensed associate real estate broker

You should definitely not be waiting. There is so much pent-up activity in the market right now. It's expected that there's going to be a huge resurgence of buyers entering the market when interest rates eventually come down. That is surely going to drive prices up in an already very low-inventory environment, so it's just going to get even more competitive once rates come down.

It’s a frustrating market. The cost of living everywhere has gotten so expensive, and the real estate market is very high and hot right now. However, just looking at the macro trends that we're seeing, it's not in anyone's best interest to wait longer for some sort of correction or for rates to come down. Inventory levels are low. The cost of construction is still super high. As soon as rates start to come down, it's going to be far more frustrating and unaffordable for buyers. So if you're able to get into the market now, it's better to get in than to wait.

This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity. You can read an extended version here.

money win

An inside look at how women are building wealth.

“After moving to one of the most expensive cities in the country, I worked with my manager and HR to secure a cost of living adjustment to my salary. The first time I requested it last year, I was turned down. I was super frustrated, but I tried requesting the adjustment again this year and was given it!”

— Emily O (CA). Them: Cost of living isn’t a good reason to ask for a raise. [Bene Gesserit voice]: Wanna bet?

Scored a raise, saved up for a big purchase, or reached another money goal? Tell us about it here. Quotes are edited and condensed for clarity.

for the group chat

The money stories everyone’s talking about.

Who can afford to put 20% down on a house today? 

Spoiler: “Nepo homebuyers.”

A millennial mom charges her 6-year-old rent…

And personal finance experts say she might be onto something.

Adding items to your cart to get free shipping usually doesn’t save you $$$...

Plus, 25 other financial moves that just don’t math.

Nothing is safe from inflation…

Not even chocolate Easter bunnies.

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How to win at work, according to successful women.

Ashley Sumner action items headshot

As the founder and CEO of Liminal, a platform that matches people to mindset coaches, Ashley Sumner is passionate about helping others realize their potential. And as a leader, she knows a thing or two about dealing with workplace pressure and staying focused on big goals. Below, she shares her advice for giving difficult feedback, prepping (but not overprepping) for an important meeting, and paying it forward when you get your paycheck.

Advice for what to do when you…

Have to give difficult feedback…

Speak from your heart, and say the hardest thing first. Then allow for a silent moment while the feedback lands in the other person’s psyche. Offer reasons with a direct and compassionate tone. Allow questions, but also give them space to process for a day or two, and then follow up for an additional conversation to answer any questions and to also make sure they heard you clearly. 

Are prepping for an important meeting…

Be clear on the goal of the meeting. Ask yourself: What has to happen to make this a great meeting? Spend time considering what the motivations or needs are of each person in the meeting. Have a short list of points you want to hit, and allow for intuition to guide the rest. 


Failure only exists in the mind of someone who thinks they were in control of the outcome. Reframe a “fail” as a life experience designed for you to grow and evolve as a human, instead of overidentifying with it. Be grateful you got to experience something new and keep going.

Are asked your biggest weakness... 

Start with a light answer, like “chocolate.” Then, honestly answer with a weakness you've had in the past but with a clear example of how it is no longer something you are navigating and how you made that happen. Self-awareness develops trust.

Get your paycheck... 

Have a moment of deep gratitude and appreciation that you have one. Then buy someone else’s coffee.

This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity. You can read an extended version here.

theskimm: here's what's next

theSkimm helps you tackle your to-do lists, whether you're refinancing your loans or choosing a daycare for the first time. We talk to experts and real women to empower you to make decisions faster and with more confidence. Check out our guides to get started.

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