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Old 06-14-2013, 05:38 AM
 
1,975 posts, read 2,728,461 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by artangel View Post
I've posted before in other threads and this one, too, I think.....about howutterly lonely I am, despite trying to do everything in my power to be social. Therein lies the rub, however, as I don't have the ability to get up and get out easily, as my health is compromised. I have tried to organise groups to meet, invited folks over to my house many times, provided meals, tried to host events etc. It is taking so long....much, much longer than I anticipated when moving here alone. One thing that complicates the issue is the distance to activities, as I live "in the boonies" and hate driving, especially in any kind of heavy traffic. I'd gladly pay for gas if I could find a willing companion to attend theatrical events, concerts etc in the closest city.....but, although I've asked many times and even posted in the community forum, I've had no luck. Honestly, I don't think I'm repulsive..... I get along with almost everyone, laugh easily, can converse on many subjects, take showers etc....but sometimes I rather dramatically feel I will die from loneliness! The scene you described in a prior post, of a resident being dead for 2 days before being found, has certainly occupied my thoughts/fears. My sons seldom call me or keep in touch (believe me I try so hard!!!!) so I can go days without seeing or hearing from someone. Yes, I do pick up the phone and call others. It's my doggone health that has limited me so much!!!

And that brings up another point....the question of sharing living space. Yes, I've thought of it. I am on such a fixed income....last year I only had $10,000 to live on after paying for all my health care expenses. I can't work. But half the time I'm unable to sleep. I get up very late, such as 1 pm, after a rough night. I stay up very late. I just don't think I could ever find anyone who could put up with me and my crazy hours. I also am frightened of being abused or taken advantage of, of having possessions or credit identity stolen.....so I usually discard the idea. I guess I keep hoping to be able to downsize drastically to maybe a one bedroom place eventually and manage on what I have. I'd love to be with someone, young or old, male or female who is compatible....but have very little hope of that happening. I did just join a club tonight that meets once a month for games. Unfortunately it's on the same day as my current support group meeting....hate it when that happens! But I'm still trying. Sent an email to someone else asking about a group she meets with....invited someone over for tommorrow....offered to host a games day and provided food 2 weeks ago to cries of "wonderful! Sounds like fun! Count me in!" and only one person showed up on the appointed day. *sigh* I really don't know what to do. I'm actually considering a move back across country again to NW IL, with it's miserable weather that causes me physical pain, because I can get around easily in my "home town", there are many activities, and I have a group of old friends I can count on. Decisions! Decisions! (financially, though, much tougher to survive there)

I've thought of an independent living facility where I'd have a room/rooms for privacy but with common facilities to share/enjoy. But I could never afford that. I never expected to be old (62) and alone, as I planned to stay married to the husband I'd been with since I was 15....but he had other plans, and here I am. What to do???? A younger (45) friend told me they do have referral services to match up roomates. Let's see...what would I ask for...someone quiet who doesn't mind odd hours? Someone physically able or willing to help me pay for work done? I'm intelligent, soft-spoken but funny, love to talk about many things, very neat and orderly unless feeling unwell...then all bets are off. And I must have at least one dog. What do I have to offer someone? I don't know.

Anyway, sorry to write so much. As you can tell, it's something I've been thinking a lot about and struggling with. Wish I had some answers........
My heart goes out to you. Altho' I am an introvert and I have no problems being alone (most of the time). So, fortunately and unfortunately, I think that makes it much easier to me. Most of the time. Not all of the time. I do understand.

I moved halfway across country from my home state, two weeks after I retired from the place where I had worked for almost 30 years. I was SO tired of my area (Southern CA). I just thought I'd like a more laid-back city/state and that COL would be less expensive (and it is, to an extent). But I didn't realize how much moving to a new place would cost emotionally.

It's very difficult to make friends when we're older, unless we attend a church or synagogue. And I don't. I do have two very good friends where I currently, but they are younger and they are still working FT (40+ hours a week). I do have a knitting group that meets 6 days a week, in a lovely yarn shop -- with a kitchen yet! LOL -- but I don't want to 'live' there, and I don't want to do anything 6 aftns a week. So --

My home is my home, my friends are there, I am so familiar with my home city, and there are lots of things to do there. I'm moving back home. So my totally unasked-for advice is: move back home. I know the winters in IL can be miserable -- so what? You're going to be miserable only a few months out of the year. Wherever you are now -- you're miserable all the time. You have friends at home. You don't have friends where you currently are. And if you're not miserably lonely -- you're going to be at least a little healthier than you are now.

Also -- I don't know what your health problems are and I'm not asking you to divulge anything private like that. What I can say to you is that I was sick for over three years. On the advice of a new friend, I started seeing a Doctor of Oriental Medicine about a month ago. After just two acupuncture treatments, I was out of pain -- totally -- for the first time in 3+ years. I see her once a week now, sometimes twice, and I haven't felt this good IN YEARS. I sleep well and wake up feeling refreshed. And the only med she has me on is thyroid. If you can find a good DOM who practices Japanese acupuncture (a little different than Chinese acupuncture), it's certainly worth going a few times to see if you can be helped.

I do realize that some women must move, when they retire, to a less expensive place. But for those of us who want to go back home and can afford to go back home -- just do it. (No, I'm not looking forward to the hassle of the move -- after all, who actually loves moving?? -- LOL -- particularly from one state to another -- but at least it's the last big move, for me.)

I really wish you the very best.

 
Old 06-15-2013, 03:34 PM
 
1,953 posts, read 4,623,750 times
Reputation: 1381
Quote:
Originally Posted by loveautumn View Post
MoveNOn....would you mind sharing where you did move to (I see SE) but more specifically. You don't have to reveal the exact city if you don't want to but the state and more information about how you misread the culture. I'm thinking about moving to NC, but just don't think I would fit into a southern culture. Although I know triangle area isn't really very "southern" any more. I too do "alone" pretty well, mostly out of necessity, but I appreciate your comments on just how hard it is to fit in. An older woman without kids/grandkids around is not comfortable for alot of people, as far as socializing. I live in city (that was once just a suburb) outside of a bigger city now and being around a big city, can sort of blend in.

It seems that most of us on this particular thread know we don't want to/or can't stay where we are, but really struggle to find another "home".
Just a note about NC: I've been researching NC for possible retirement as well, but there are HUGE changes in the works at the state level re: taxes. Not senior friendly, including the possibility of taxing SS benefits at the same levels as the feds. Other possible changes include increases in taxes on groceries, etc. I don't know the final result, as the final votes haven't been taken, but it's worth following if NC is still on your list of possible retirement locations.

Some recent articles:
RALEIGH: Senate GOP debuts far-reaching tax overhaul | State Politics | NewsObserver.com
North Carolina Considers Impressive Tax Reform Options | Tax Foundation

Asheville has pretty high taxes at present:
groceries are taxed at 4.25%
presc drugs at 2.25%
non presc drugs at 2.25%
prepared food at 10.5%
clothing and other items at 7%

Big changes are coming and I'm not sure what the overall impact would be on a retiree, but taxing SS benefits is something that most states are not doing (35 states don't tax SS), so NC may be less retiree friendly than in the past depending on what happens.

Taxes on groceries is also something I'd like to avoid in retirement.
 
Old 06-15-2013, 03:36 PM
 
1,953 posts, read 4,623,750 times
Reputation: 1381
Quote:
Originally Posted by MoveNOn View Post
xz2y, great post. I started looking at states with no income tax and when I started checking what they taxed in lieu of the state sales tax, I realized some would hurt more. Great reminders and suggestions. Thank you.
Thanks for the nice feedback!
 
Old 06-15-2013, 05:20 PM
 
Location: Edina, MN, USA
6,955 posts, read 7,401,444 times
Reputation: 16294
Quote:
Originally Posted by xz2y View Post
Just a note about NC: I've been researching NC for possible retirement as well, but there are HUGE changes in the works at the state level re: taxes. Not senior friendly, including the possibility of taxing SS benefits at the same levels as the feds. Other possible changes include increases in taxes on groceries, etc. I don't know the final result, as the final votes haven't been taken, but it's worth following if NC is still on your list of possible retirement locations.

Some recent articles:
RALEIGH: Senate GOP debuts far-reaching tax overhaul | State Politics | NewsObserver.com
North Carolina Considers Impressive Tax Reform Options | Tax Foundation

Asheville has pretty high taxes at present:
groceries are taxed at 4.25%
presc drugs at 2.25%
non presc drugs at 2.25%
prepared food at 10.5%
clothing and other items at 7%

Big changes are coming and I'm not sure what the overall impact would be on a retiree, but taxing SS benefits is something that most states are not doing (35 states don't tax SS), so NC may be less retiree friendly than in the past depending on what happens.

Taxes on groceries is also something I'd like to avoid in retirement.
This really sucks. Right now, it's the only place I want to retire to.
 
Old 06-15-2013, 05:54 PM
 
1,953 posts, read 4,623,750 times
Reputation: 1381
Quote:
Originally Posted by Umbria View Post
This really sucks. Right now, it's the only place I want to retire to.
Yes it does. Asheville is on my short list for retirement. I'm glad I ran across these articles, but this is scary. Higher taxes on food and presc drugs as well as taxing SS the same as the feds is not a good recipe for retirement. Based on my analysis of various tax situations in several states for my income, I'd be paying more taxes in Asheville than Portland, OR, which is known for high income taxes, though no sales taxes.

Vermont taxes SS the same way as the feds, but they have huge deductions to income for their personal exemption and standard deduction, and no sales taxes on groceries. And in VT, the tax brackets are very different than NC, for example: in VT, the first tax bracket of 3.55% tax goes from $0 - $34,500, compared with the first bracket in NC, which is 6% on $0 - $12,500. Big difference.

There are lots of other considerations beyond state taxes, such as housing and health insurance costs, but this was not good news. I'll be watching the local NC papers to find out the final results after June 30.

So far housing costs are somewhat lower in NC compared to places like Oregon or the northeast, but that could change as a consequence of the new tax changes, if property taxes rise. Several states are moving away from income taxes (lowering them) to "consumption" taxes (i.e., higher sales taxes on more services and goods, including groceries), which helps the wealthy with lower income taxes, but hurts the middle and lower classes since they spend more of their income on food and necessities. And several states are changing their exemptions for retiree income (Michigan did that last year) and Kentucky is also doing it. Not good news for retirees.

Good website to keep up with changes in tax laws around the country.

http://www.ctj.org/taxjusticedigest/...orth_carolina/

Last edited by xz2y; 06-15-2013 at 06:06 PM..
 
Old 06-15-2013, 06:05 PM
 
967 posts, read 920,321 times
Reputation: 1890
Fran,
Thanks for your reply....I repp'd you before I thought to add a comment to it.

I have fibromyalgia and arthritis. Both are exacerbated by humidity, cold, dampness, and change in barometric pressure. NW IL changes a lot and is very damp, even in the summer. Overcast 75% of the time. If it weren't for the weather I'd move in a heartbeat....uh, but also, too expensive. When I retire in 3 or so years I'll have about 850 a mo to live on(after medicare costs), so will have to use savings or a job (yeah, right!) to supplement income. Property taxes very high there, plus would ned to pay for snow removal/yard upkeep. I've never lived in an apt for more than a few months...thought I'd go nuts, then. I'm very quiet.

I'm still thinking about it. I go back for a visit in Sept. Usually wind up in pain. Will have to consider it again.......Thanks for your response---I appreciate it! Good luck to you!
 
Old 06-15-2013, 07:48 PM
 
985 posts, read 2,212,535 times
Reputation: 780
Quote:
Originally Posted by xz2y View Post
Yes it does. Asheville is on my short list for retirement. I'm glad I ran across these articles, but this is scary. Higher taxes on food and presc drugs as well as taxing SS the same as the feds is not a good recipe for retirement. Based on my analysis of various tax situations in several states for my income, I'd be paying more taxes in Asheville than Portland, OR, which is known for high income taxes, though no sales taxes.

Vermont taxes SS the same way as the feds, but they have huge deductions to income for their personal exemption and standard deduction, and no sales taxes on groceries. And in VT, the tax brackets are very different than NC, for example: in VT, the first tax bracket of 3.55% tax goes from $0 - $34,500, compared with the first bracket in NC, which is 6% on $0 - $12,500. Big difference.

There are lots of other considerations beyond state taxes, such as housing and health insurance costs, but this was not good news. I'll be watching the local NC papers to find out the final results after June 30.

So far housing costs are somewhat lower in NC compared to places like Oregon or the northeast, but that could change as a consequence of the new tax changes, if property taxes rise. Several states are moving away from income taxes (lowering them) to "consumption" taxes (i.e., higher sales taxes on more services and goods, including groceries), which helps the wealthy with lower income taxes, but hurts the middle and lower classes since they spend more of their income on food and necessities. And several states are changing their exemptions for retiree income (Michigan did that last year) and Kentucky is also doing it. Not good news for retirees.

Good website to keep up with changes in tax laws around the country.

Tax Justice Blog

Hello from NC.
I have a retired friend who swears that if they start taxing here SS here, she's selling her house and moving! I'm trying to make a decision myself about where to go in the next few yrs. when I want to quit working, and after being here for 17 yrs., I cannot stand the summers here. I'm from the Midwest originally. Over all, I prefer cold and snow and a definite four season climate. Never thought I would miss seeing snow outside as much as I do. Going back north eventually.

This year isn't quite so bad..... yet.

I'm curious about your comment about Michigan changing their exemptions last year. Do they now tax SS income? I thought they didn't. Traverse City is on my list.

The tax changes in NC are not definite yet, as I see you know. And believe me there are people out protesting every week at the Capitol. These things still have to go through the NC house and senate. If they take away the mortgage interest deduction, start taxing SS, take away our property tax deduction like they're talking about, that would make lots of people want to get the heck out, including me.

Any questions about the Raleigh area, glad to help.
best,
toodie
 
Old 06-15-2013, 08:19 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by toodie View Post
Hello from NC.
I have a retired friend who swears that if they start taxing here SS here, she's selling her house and moving! I'm trying to make a decision myself about where to go in the next few yrs. when I want to quit working, and after being here for 17 yrs., I cannot stand the summers here. I'm from the Midwest originally. Over all, I prefer cold and snow and a definite four season climate. Never thought I would miss seeing snow outside as much as I do. Going back north eventually.

This year isn't quite so bad..... yet.

I'm curious about your comment about Michigan changing their exemptions last year. Do they now tax SS income? I thought they didn't. Traverse City is on my list.

The tax changes in NC are not definite yet, as I see you know. And believe me there are people out protesting every week at the Capitol. These things still have to go through the NC house and senate. If they take away the mortgage interest deduction, start taxing SS, take away our property tax deduction like they're talking about, that would make lots of people want to get the heck out, including me.

Any questions about the Raleigh area, glad to help.
best,
toodie
Thank you so much for your comments! Traverse City was on my list too, (I'm in SE MI), but the winters are quite harsh and the Great Lakes levels are way down, like 15 to 20 feet lower than they should be, due to evaporation and lack of sea ice, due to global warming. This is creating huge problems for shipping lanes, and beaches are huge (not a good thing, since farther out there are logs, tree stumps, debris, etc). People's boat docks are high and dry. Very bad news for shoreline residents. The lake levels won't come back given the continued warming climate. There are big controversies over dredging shipping lanes for barge traffic.

The tax situation changed last year. Good links to explain it are below. MI does not tax SS.

http://www.michigan.gov/documents/ta...x_359807_7.pdf

http://www.michigan.gov/documents/ta...s_359799_7.pdf

If you were born before 1946, the retiree exemptions are a good deal. Anyone born after that gets hit, especially those born after 1952.

Sorry to hear that the summers are too hot for you in NC. Are they any better in Asheville due to the higher elevations? I have friends in the Charlotte area who love the hot, sticky weather, but that's not for me.

Traverse City is quite small, and housing is somewhat hard to find given limited options, but it is a charming town. Keep me posted and ask me anything about TC!
 
Old 06-16-2013, 07:56 AM
 
1,975 posts, read 2,728,461 times
Reputation: 3507
Quote:
Originally Posted by artangel View Post
Fran,
Thanks for your reply....I repp'd you before I thought to add a comment to it.

I have fibromyalgia and arthritis. Both are exacerbated by humidity, cold, dampness, and change in barometric pressure. NW IL changes a lot and is very damp, even in the summer. Overcast 75% of the time. If it weren't for the weather I'd move in a heartbeat....uh, but also, too expensive. When I retire in 3 or so years I'll have about 850 a mo to live on(after medicare costs), so will have to use savings or a job (yeah, right!) to supplement income. Property taxes very high there, plus would ned to pay for snow removal/yard upkeep. I've never lived in an apt for more than a few months...thought I'd go nuts, then. I'm very quiet.

I'm still thinking about it. I go back for a visit in Sept. Usually wind up in pain. Will have to consider it again.......Thanks for your response---I appreciate it! Good luck to you!
I'm so sorry you have fibromyalgia and arthritis. I know I must sound like a 'know-it-all" sometimes, but have you thought of seeing a Japanese acupuncturist? I see one here (she's also a DOM), and she keeps me out of pain.

I'm going to state the obvious: no matter where we live, there's is going to be at least one major thing we don't like. The weather, the effects of climate change, the high cost of living, taxes, loneliness.

I think there are less expensive places to live in comparison to other places, but the reality is that, these days, every place is expensive. The days of a cheap place to live are pretty much gone, and I don't think they're coming back. Ever.

The bottom line is: we can't have everything. We have to decide what we can't live without and what we can't stand, and go from there.

And then there are just some unpleasant things we have to accept.

This search for happiness, that so many of us are on, is an illusion.
 
Old 06-16-2013, 01:17 PM
 
Location: SW US
2,223 posts, read 2,040,423 times
Reputation: 3834
I would add that we can no longer look at climate history to find the "ideal" place to live.
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