U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Retirement
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 10-22-2011, 05:46 AM
 
Location: SW MO
23,605 posts, read 31,475,774 times
Reputation: 29071

Advertisements

We purposely left "sunny" California and moved to and purchased a home in a land of four seasons but none of them particularly harsh if you don't count tornadoes (think Joplin), a fair amount of humidity in summer and some snow, possible ice storms and straight-line winds in winter.

When my wife and I married 15 years ago we were both renters. I was "coming down" from the end of a lengthy (25 years) marriage and family law in CA was not friendly to men almost 20 years ago - "family" being defines as wives and children; fathers and husbands need not apply. Precisely half my gross income was going to child and spousal support and the former didn't end until five years ago. My wife had just finished raising her two daughters for 16 years with absolutely no support from her former husband so she was on financial edge as well. Neither of us had the proverbial pot to **** in.

Fast forward to 2008: our incomes dropped significantly in retirement, we made a 2,000 mile move to an area we both already loved, bought a home, totally outfitted, furnished and appointed it and we're very comfortable - financially as well. Having been a former home owner I knew what a money pit a house could be and my wife, for whom this is the first house she's ever owned has certainly figured it out. Yet there was never any question in either of our minds that purchasing a single-family dwelling was the way to go for us.

We do have a POA but it's not intrusive in the least. Our annual assessment is a walloping $205 a YEAR, not a month, and that helps maintain 15 community-owned lots, a community center with a pool, two parks, a lighted helipad for emergency medical evacuation (we're 22 miles from the nearest hospital) and a boat launch. It also covers our road maintenance and snow clearing when needed. We maintain the home and our property. The community association also maintains two wells that provide all our water for which we pay a base rate of $10 a month. It takes a lot of watering to have to pay a few dollars more and we do our own water usage readings. Our total housing costs, even with mortgage, taxes and insurance are a bit less than we had been paying in rent and we have over twice the space and a nice, manageable bit of land.

What, where and how to live in retirement is obviously a very personal choice and certainly nothing that should be entered into lightly and then, only after a great deal of research. Too, one must carefully weigh and consider their preferences and, of course, their means and abilities. Ours were to live out our lives on our own, owned property instead of someone else's. The "American Dream" of home ownership has become out of reach for all too many and may never be a reality, but for a relative few, for succeeding generations. We're old enough to remember it and we worked hard to achieve it post age 60. Money pit considerations notwithstanding, we were not to be denied it. But check back with me in 20 years (I'll be 85) and I might be reconsidering.

As Yoda said, "Try not. Do or do not. There is no try!"
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 10-22-2011, 06:25 AM
 
Location: Near a river
16,042 posts, read 18,971,705 times
Reputation: 15649
Quote:
Originally Posted by mathjak107 View Post
my first house i kind of didnt keep on top of everything. it wasnt to much work or a money pit because i let things slide until they became real issues or i just didnt deal with them at all. same thing with my wifes mom. when we went to sell the house after she died there was a ton of stuff that had to be taken care of , her mom just chose not to deal with it so the house was trouble free to her.
this house we have now i deal with every little thing. since we dont live there full time i never know what will suddenly become an issue and when. its a very high maintaince area as well . being in a forest with trees and leaves, harsh winters,bugs and insects and high winds at times as we are 1500 ft up make for constant maintaince.

nothing really breaks,its just constant preventative stuff mostly that makes it a little money pit.
If I had the good fortune to live in NYC, I would use any extra money to travel, a different destination every time. I would never saddle myself with another property esp out of state. I feel for you, going into the harsh Pocono winter. Maybe you could put it on the market now with the hope of attracting some skiers? If you have summer pics you could post those. I bet it's a beautiful place, but I take it that this area is not on our "recommended" list?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-22-2011, 06:39 AM
 
Location: Near a river
16,042 posts, read 18,971,705 times
Reputation: 15649
Quote:
Originally Posted by Curmudgeon View Post
What, where and how to live in retirement is obviously a very personal choice and certainly nothing that should be entered into lightly and then, only after a great deal of research. Too, one must carefully weigh and consider their preferences and, of course, their means and abilities. Ours were to live out our lives on our own, owned property instead of someone else's. The "American Dream" of home ownership has become out of reach for all too many and may never be a reality, but for a relative few, for succeeding generations. We're old enough to remember it and we worked hard to achieve it post age 60. Money pit considerations notwithstanding, we were not to be denied it. But check back with me in 20 years (I'll be 85) and I might be reconsidering.

As Yoda said, "Try not. Do or do not. There is no try!"
No doubt you've read about Helen and Scott Nearing...who, if you can put aside any political leanings they were said to have, really epitomized what you are talking about. They went to the extreme, but that was their nature. They left their city jobs at the height of the Great Depression and started homesteading in Vermont, and I think it was in their mid-sixties that they decided to start all over again at a beautiful place on the coast of Maine. They did did it all, including putting up their own food, etc. I've read their story and found it fascinating. I think he lived to 100, she till at least 90. You can see their story on Wikipedia.

I think that for many, choosing where to move to is also choosing where, hopefully, to draw one's last breath. That's why I won't move to a city or certain other kinds of locations, as that "setting" wouldn't suit me. Of course the best-laid plans....
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-22-2011, 06:53 AM
 
Location: Near a river
16,042 posts, read 18,971,705 times
Reputation: 15649
Retire on a cruise ship:

Retirement Cruise Ship Nearing Launch


I've been saying for years that it would be cheaper to do this than to go into assisted living, or into a nursing home. My friend's father pays something like $375/day to live in his somewhat posh assisted living facility, but they don't even provide escorted service to his medical appointments. Retiring on a cruise ship, going from independent living to assisted to a nursing home to demise (just throw me overboard, think of how cheap!) sounds good to me.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-22-2011, 07:07 AM
 
Location: SW MO
23,605 posts, read 31,475,774 times
Reputation: 29071
Quote:
Originally Posted by newenglandgirl View Post
No doubt you've read about Helen and Scott Nearing...who, if you can put aside any political leanings they were said to have, really epitomized what you are talking about. They went to the extreme, but that was their nature. They left their city jobs at the height of the Great Depression and started homesteading in Vermont, and I think it was in their mid-sixties that they decided to start all over again at a beautiful place on the coast of Maine. They did did it all, including putting up their own food, etc. I've read their story and found it fascinating. I think he lived to 100, she till at least 90. You can see their story on Wikipedia.

I think that for many, choosing where to move to is also choosing where, hopefully, to draw one's last breath. That's why I won't move to a city or certain other kinds of locations, as that "setting" wouldn't suit me. Of course the best-laid plans....
What I love are the true stories of Wall Street executives, attorneys and others in very lucrative careers who leave their "establishment" jobs, buy a news stand or hot dog wagon and are at peace with themselves and life in general.

They call it the rat race for a reason!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-22-2011, 08:12 AM
 
Location: Las Flores, Orange County, CA
26,346 posts, read 82,985,331 times
Reputation: 17509
Quote:
Originally Posted by Curmudgeon View Post
Just curious about the issue of home ownership for retirees. How many have sold or consider selling single-dwelling houses and looked into apartments, condos or self contained retirement communities specifically to relieve themselves of the "burden" of upkeep and maintenance, including yard care, that goes along with home ownership?

As a homeowner of a certain age, I know how labor intensive and costly such things can be. Is it worth it to give up that facet of "The American Dream" - put in quotes because it's become so far outside the reach of so many - for the "comfort" of not having to worry about or pay for those things?

What say you, and why?

As much as your home upkeep is costing/working you, it still may be the cheapest/easiest of all your options (at the same quality of life). Have you analyzed the costs of the other alternatives? Gardners aren't that expensive. Occaisional plumbing & electrical work isn't that expensive (unless you have a major problem like broken pipe under the slab in which case you'd have to call in the pros anyway.) All the things I do around the house now (I'm 50) wouldn't cost that much to pay for but I enjoy doing them.

My 88 year old mom doesn't drive and still lives in her home. She uses an LA County Access (for like $5) to drive her to doctors and shopping. My 90 year dad is in a board and care because my mom can't physically take care of him but he has LTC insurance. We've analyzed it and there are no cheaper/easier options plus the value of living in her own home is an incalculable benefit.

I think you'll find you'll want to (and find it cheaper and easier) live in your own home until you physically (or mentally) can't do it any more. This is the conclusion that most people have reached.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-22-2011, 08:39 AM
 
Location: delaware
688 posts, read 864,170 times
Reputation: 2367
i have been living in my current location for over five years, and although it was not what i would have chosen for retirement when i used to think and plan for it twenty years ago, it is a pragmatic choice, a quasi-compromise decision with the significant other. i have a 1900 sq. ft. townhouse end unit which is very light, bright, near town of pop. 15000- stores, banks, some shopping, restaurants, library, art center, and large senior center. the town is 80 miles from two large cities ( airports ) and is an hour from the ocean beaches. it is twenty miles to major hospital and less distance to a smaller medical facility. the neighborhood is adjacent to a park with walking trails and there are a mixture of people in the development- single, retired, gay,small families.

it is a pleasant place, although, disappointingly, i do not find it a soulful place, but i have expended a great deal of time and energy to make friends and find a niche here. there is no hoa but maintenance is not major as it has been on many of the larger, older homes i've lived in over the years. the neighbor's son cuts my lawn, i and SO usually do the snow, sometimes hiring a teen to do it, and sometimes having help from neighbor's snowblower. i hire someone for spring and fall cleanup for the small yard which i have.

i am 68 and at this point in time, think i will probably remain in this house for another 7-8 years. i do not plan to buy any more real estate, but can envision entering a retirement community ( with an assisted living component ) in an independent condo/apartment on a rental basis. i have looked at a few which would probably work for me and there will be, in coming years, more such rental communities to meet the needs of baby boomers with limited money to invest, such as a CCRC would require.

i am grateful for the life i have, the supports i have, and the income, though moderate, to fund it. although it is not the life and the place i would have chosen years ago,it fits the re-invented life i have made after my husband's death; i intend to make it work.


catsy girl
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-22-2011, 08:39 AM
 
Location: SW MO
23,605 posts, read 31,475,774 times
Reputation: 29071
Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles View Post
As much as your home upkeep is costing/working you, it still may be the cheapest/easiest of all your options (at the same quality of life). Have you analyzed the costs of the other alternatives? Gardners aren't that expensive. Occaisional plumbing & electrical work isn't that expensive (unless you have a major problem like broken pipe under the slab in which case you'd have to call in the pros anyway.) All the things I do around the house now (I'm 50) wouldn't cost that much to pay for but I enjoy doing them.

My 88 year old mom doesn't drive and still lives in her home. She uses an LA County Access (for like $5) to drive her to doctors and shopping. My 90 year dad is in a board and care because my mom can't physically take care of him but he has LTC insurance. We've analyzed it and there are no cheaper/easier options plus the value of living in her own home is an incalculable benefit.

I think you'll find you'll want to (and find it cheaper and easier) live in your own home until you physically (or mentally) can't do it any more. This is the conclusion that most people have reached.
I quite agree. I currently do all the home repairs, painting and upgrades, maintenance and yard work. I recently suffered a torn rotator cuff that has resulted in a decreased range of motion in one arm but that has not (I won't permit it to) significantly degraded my abilities to maintain the "estate."

Thankfully, the costs of having the yard work and other repairs done by others in the area in which we live are reasonable and can be absorbed if, or more likely when, that ultimately becomes necessary. We're decidedly here to stay!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-22-2011, 09:38 AM
 
8,191 posts, read 11,905,691 times
Reputation: 17964
Quote:
Originally Posted by newenglandgirl View Post
Retire on a cruise ship:

Retirement Cruise Ship Nearing Launch


I've been saying for years that it would be cheaper to do this than to go into assisted living, or into a nursing home. My friend's father pays something like $375/day to live in his somewhat posh assisted living facility, but they don't even provide escorted service to his medical appointments. Retiring on a cruise ship, going from independent living to assisted to a nursing home to demise (just throw me overboard, think of how cheap!) sounds good to me.
Apparently that cruise ship never launched. That link is from 2009 and I could find no other info on the company other than their LLC is apparently now inactive.

Notwithstanding the above, I agree with you about retiring on a cruise ship. I guess I'm actually doing so on a part-time basis anyway. This year alone my wife and I will spend 2 1/2 months on cruise ships: 30 days cruising around South America from LA to Brazil; 16 days from Ft. Lauderdale to Spain & Italy; 14 days from Barcelona to New Orleans; and, 14 days from Rome to Ft. Lauderdale.

And the prices are definitely cheaper than $375/day. In fact, for our upcoming 14-day cruise from Barcelona to New Orleans, my wife and I are only paying $499pp for the entire cruise. Of course, there will be a few other charges (tips, drinks, etc.), but we're even getting an onboard credit of $250 to help offset the incidental expenses because we are shareholders.

The one downside to trying to actually retire on a cruise ship is that the onboard medical services are pretty limited. In fact, just a week or so ago, an elderly gentleman on a cruise ship became ill and ship personnel basically dumped him in Cartegena, Columbia.

Norwegian Cruise Lines responds after sick, elderly couple is left in Colombia | wtsp.com
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-22-2011, 09:49 AM
 
8,191 posts, read 11,905,691 times
Reputation: 17964
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cattknap View Post
"No severe weather" in Las Vegas?? You've got to be kidding! I've been to Las Vegas in the summer - miserable!
Quote:
Originally Posted by yellowsnow View Post
Hot, yes. But nothing like hurricanes, tornados, snow, blizzards, extreme cold, severe thunderstorms, excessive rain, gloom, etc. That kind of stuff. Yes, it's too hot for 8 weeks in the summer...but you don't have to shovel it and the rest of the year is almost perfect!
Exactly! Hot and sunny with endless blue skies is not my idea of severe weather, lol. And if we want a change of scenery and weather, we take a short 20-25 minute drive up to Mt. Charleston where the scenery changes from desert to forest and the temperature drops from 100 to 80.

Spring Mountains - Mount Charleston - Lovell Canyon
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Retirement
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top