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Old 03-12-2018, 04:05 PM
 
Location: Saint John, IN
10,638 posts, read 3,308,346 times
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We will be empty nesters and retired in about 12 years (give or take) and have already started thinking of where we want to move to and the type of house we would want. Originally thought about a condo or townhouse, but the more we thought about it I think we're leaning towards a ranch SF home. This way we don't need to deal with shared walls and noise, plus still have a decent yard. We are also used to a large home, so going into a condo would probably not work for us.
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Old 03-12-2018, 04:15 PM
 
4,825 posts, read 2,138,910 times
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One level. Garage. Small yard .and no fire hazard row home (aka townhouse).

Economically feasible ...(tax,water...maintenance)

While some are upsizing...less is more manageable as objects just aren't as important as the people we welcome into our humble abode.
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Old 03-12-2018, 05:24 PM
Status: "I am in preparation mode!" (set 3 days ago)
 
5,513 posts, read 5,494,602 times
Reputation: 4210
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nypafl4u View Post
Interesting topic here. I am not single but am middle aged. I can think of all the times (including now) that I think about moving and what would make sense. I do know my needs changed dramatically at different stages of life and they still are changing now.
Going back to my single days, my needs were simple. I never rented in my life, so buying something was the only way for me.
My first mortgage was for a very low cost (market was such too) co-op studio, about 500 sq. feet and L shaped that allowed me to build a 3/4 high wall with he upper part made of glass block. This allowed privacy, yet air flow into what I built into a sleeping alcove. It fit a twin bed and had a closet. It worked great when I was single but become noticeably small when I met my now wife who had two young kids. I liked minimal maintenance, close proximity to mass transit and very low cost which allowed going out a lot.
Once I settled in with my new family, we needed a house on a budget. We shopped for 3 beds and 2 baths and found a home with a finished basement apartment that I ended up renting to a family member. This helped with our new higher cost house. Once the kids got older, we realized the importance a good school district and spent the next two years searching where we are today, now approaching 13 years. We chose a 4 bedroom, 2 1/2 bath 2500 sq. foot home in a great neighborhood with A rated schools, safe and fairly quiet. It was large enough to house my in laws who needed a place to stay until they could find a place. It was a stretch, but we did a lot of updating ourselves, little by little and watched our pennies carefully. When my son was born, my in laws moved out and we spread out. Thankfully we were doing better at work and could afford this. Eventually one of the step kids moved out and now we are really thinking of moving again, downsizing a bit and take it a slower.
So once again, needs dictate still great schools, quiet, safe neighborhood, but I need lower cost of living. Wife wants the dream kitchen we never put into our current house. She hates clutter, so a larger garage and a spare room would be nice. She also prefers a ranch as we get older. My dream is to be by the water. Hers is to be where there is warmer weather and less stress. We have invested into central eastern Florida (5 to 6 years ago post crash) when my mom passed away and are thinking of taking over one of my rental properties. There will always be a compromise but I really think the days of finding "the" home are over. Life changes as you go on and with it, your living needs. So I think we will always be thinking, what next.
Go with what will make you happy now, but don't focus entirely on the future. Change can happen fast. Pick what will hopefully go up in value and be desirable if you need to sell. Sometimes that means something a bit larger than planned for (3 bedrooms vs. 2 will always be more desirable when selling). When investing down south, I chose different homes, one on a canal, one with a pool, one a condo on the ocean and another that was real cheap and cheap to maintain. I was fortunate to have this flexibility, but I choose what I did to hedge my bets and hopefully have something ready for us, regardless of economic situations, that we can make our home. It's still a tough choice and now 5 or 6 years after investing, we may decide none of those properties meet our current needs exactly. But we have choices. Enjoy life and be happy. It goes by too fast.
Thanks for sharing. The goal is to live a full and maintenance free lifestyle.
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Old 03-12-2018, 05:37 PM
Status: "I am in preparation mode!" (set 3 days ago)
 
5,513 posts, read 5,494,602 times
Reputation: 4210
Quote:
Originally Posted by runswithscissors View Post
People probably didn't want to set off another marathon super-thread of HOA bashing. But someone already mentioned it.

PLENTY Of middle aged AND SINGLE people buy condos and townhouses. But you already ruled them out so not sure what the right answer would be.

How about buy a duplex and rent half out to some ideal single tenant then you can evict annoying people if necessary. But remember the IRS sees that as a business.
I have not ruled it out. I am just thinking out loud. When I visited, I really liked this townhouse development. It was not your typical townhouse development. They are Victorian Style twin homes. (Semidetached) I loved the grounds. It was sparse and the price was right.

I did not like the detached housing development. Too many houses that looked the same. It was boring and a lot more expensive.

I love to walk locally. The outside is just as important as the inside.
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Old 03-12-2018, 05:39 PM
Status: "I am in preparation mode!" (set 3 days ago)
 
5,513 posts, read 5,494,602 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by N.Cal View Post
Mid-50s when I bought and a first time home buyer at that.

Townhome - 3 story - 3,100 sf

Location location location

Most important was having some place that had dedicated space for my five bicycles inside the house. But that was actually secondary to location. If I couldn’t find something within the urban core that I could afford, I would have remained renting. I was very specific about the exact area I wanted to buy in.

No, or I would be living in one of the swank downtown high-rises. I bought within the urban core in a gentrifying area at $82 sf and my townhouse is now around $200 sf. Well, what I did under estimate was the cost of everything else, like going from a 700 sf apt to a house and the furniture needed, the cost of a refrigerator, repainting the entire house, changing out every single light fixture, etc.
Congratulations!

Yes, furniture and upgrades are expensive. Location is paramount.
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Old 03-12-2018, 05:44 PM
Status: "I am in preparation mode!" (set 3 days ago)
 
5,513 posts, read 5,494,602 times
Reputation: 4210
Quote:
Originally Posted by MillennialUrbanist View Post
I'm getting close to middle age (I'm 34), also single and childfree. I'm looking for a condominium in a suburban downtown. At this point, I'm too old for a hipster lifestyle in a gentrified city neighborhood, plus I can't afford it. But I also don't want to live in a remote, car-centric area where you have to drive to pick up a loaf of bread. I want to be able to walk to a grocery store, as well as to a neighborhood bar on a Friday night. So, suburban downtowns seem to meet my requirements pretty well. Plus, I don't care about school districts, so I can keep costs down by buying in an area with subpar schools.

I want a condominium for sure; I don't want to bother with shoveling snow in the winter and mowing the lawn in the summer. Plus, a building entrance where only residents and guests can get past adds a layer of security. One bedroom is plenty enough for me, but a second bedroom can be helpful if I have relatives in town. Otherwise, they can crash on my living room couch, college-style.
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Old 03-12-2018, 05:57 PM
 
Location: Crook County, Illinois
3,000 posts, read 1,253,787 times
Reputation: 3664
Quote:
Originally Posted by CGab View Post
We will be empty nesters and retired in about 12 years (give or take) and have already started thinking of where we want to move to and the type of house we would want. Originally thought about a condo or townhouse, but the more we thought about it I think we're leaning towards a ranch SF home. This way we don't need to deal with shared walls and noise, plus still have a decent yard. We are also used to a large home, so going into a condo would probably not work for us.
I can understand that; my parents say the same thing. The like the peace and quiet of a single family home. I lived in houses all my formative years. But when I moved into an apartment as an adult, I liked it so much, that I could never go back to a house. I like seeing and hearing signs of life around me, even during the occasional times when someone cranks up a stereo at 11:00 PM. Plus, many condominiums are located in neighborhood that developed before the Automobile Age, which means that most everyday conveniences (like grocery stores) are within walking distance.
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Old 03-12-2018, 07:57 PM
 
Location: West Madison^WMHT
3,173 posts, read 2,740,271 times
Reputation: 3822
I ended up with a 3-bedroom house in order to also get a big kitchen, 3-car garage. I work from home most of the time, so commute wasn't important.

Spent way less than my "budget", but then put a lot into landscaping and other upgrades in the first couple of years.

I wish I'd bought more acreage, if I move again it'll be custom built on +100 acres of woodland.
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Old 03-12-2018, 07:58 PM
 
8,089 posts, read 4,446,122 times
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i got a 1200 sq ft house on 1/2 acre, 2 bedroom, 2 bath. smallest i could fine.

if i had my way, it be a one bedroom, one bath 800 sq ft on 1/4 acre.
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Old 03-13-2018, 09:02 AM
 
Location: West Madison^WMHT
3,173 posts, read 2,740,271 times
Reputation: 3822
Talking After I moved in I eliminated about half the lawn, that much less to mow.

Quote:
Originally Posted by brownbagg View Post
i got a 1200 sq ft house on 1/2 acre, 2 bedroom, 2 bath. smallest i could fine.
if i had my way, it be a one bedroom, one bath 800 sq ft on 1/4 acre.
Why less acreage? Or do you just want less lawn; that I can get behind.

Of course, only about a tenth of an acre is house+lawn, the rest of my acres are unmanaged second-growth beech and evergreen forest -- not exactly maintenance intensive, and great hunting habitat for turkey, deer, and great horned owls (I don't hunt the owls; sometimes they seem interested in hunting me).
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