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Old 10-23-2007, 01:35 PM
 
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I currently live in New York City and lam living on Social Security and a small pension. NYC is getting much too expensive to live and I'm researching cities to move to where you don't need a car (I don't drive, have never driven and don't intend to learn now).

I am looking to rent, not buy (a studio, or a one bedroom) for not more than $900 a month (preferably a little less) within walking distance of supermarkets, or grocery stores, libraries, drugstores, etc.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 10-24-2007, 12:08 AM
 
Location: Monterey Bay, California -- watching the sea lions, whales and otters! :D
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Which area of the country are you focusing on??
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Old 10-24-2007, 12:44 AM
 
Location: WA
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On a tight budget it will be a challenge to find the ideal place but there are a good number of options. I know people that manage without a car in San Francisco, Chicago, and Portland, and with a bit more effort in Dallas, and Atlanta.
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Old 10-24-2007, 07:02 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carolgre View Post
I currently live in New York City and lam living on Social Security and a small pension. NYC is getting much too expensive to live and I'm researching cities to move to where you don't need a car (I don't drive, have never driven and don't intend to learn now).

I am looking to rent, not buy (a studio, or a one bedroom) for not more than $900 a month (preferably a little less) within walking distance of supermarkets, or grocery stores, libraries, drugstores, etc.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Is there an area you are interested in ....staying in the east or is moving elsewhere okay??

What about weather concerns?? Do you have any preferences?
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Old 10-24-2007, 08:44 AM
 
68 posts, read 341,644 times
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Default Retiring without a car

I don't have any particular part of the country in mind. I'm open to any and all suggestions. I have looked into Portland but I'm a little apprehensive because they don't have any type of rent stabilization and it seems that the entire area is being gentrified with subsequent increases in rents. I would love to live in San Francisco, but, again, the rents would be far above what I could afford.
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Old 10-24-2007, 09:33 AM
 
Location: Monterey Bay, California -- watching the sea lions, whales and otters! :D
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If you're not concerned about the area of the country, or a particular state, and since you're already in New York State, you might want to look at Upstate New York or Western New York (Buffalo/Rochester), or even Syracuse. The rents in those cities would be affordable, you're already used to the culture there, and although there is snow, being retired, you wouldn't have to go out in the middle of a snowstorm.

Buffalo has hit on hard times, but there are many beautiful old Victorians that have been made into apartments. I, personally, would probably pick Syracuse, if I were moving back that way, because it's smaller, but not too small, it's pretty, near lots of natural beauty, and many neighborhoods are very walkable. If you would take a driving tour through New York State, you'd probably find lots of really nice towns that could work and are still affordable. By renting, you'll avoid those awful property taxes, and you should be able to make it.

Good luck!
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Old 10-24-2007, 09:54 AM
 
Location: Oxygen Ln. AZ
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I would check out Chico CA. The downtown section that surrounds Chico State is a wonderful, bike and pedestrian friendly town. It is historic and the restaurants and shops a treat. If you go to Craigs List you can see some of the rental possiblities there. You can get a room or small studio that may be in line with your budget. There are also co-op housing developments in Chico. Best of luck to you. That is where I would go.
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Old 10-24-2007, 11:29 AM
 
Location: Northern California
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Check out Salt Lake City which has a good transit system including light rail streetcars and commuter trains to nearby cities. There are things to do there (except not much "nightlife" as in clubs, etc.). SLC is good if you like outdoor activities. There are also casino bus day trips to the casinos in Wendover on the Nevada/Utah border. Welcome to UTA
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Old 10-24-2007, 02:09 PM
 
Location: North Adams, MA
746 posts, read 3,178,689 times
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I have been living without a car in the Berkshires of Massachusetts since I am retired and have to exist on social security alone. But there is a bus system (BRTA) which runs Mon-Sat from about 6am to 6 pm. I am in North Adams, and within walking distance of the post office, supermarket and many small stores, including a bakery. Everything is near.

There is also a Senior Center nearby and shuttle buses to take me to the more distant supermarkets, the Mall and various social outings. I still have my drivers license and rent a car one weekend every two months and have a whirlwind of shopping and stocking up that I do. The Senior Center van even takes me to a couple of organic farms and almost anywhere in the northern half of the county I want to go for $1-4 dollars each way. Tere are discount taxi tickets available too and two hot lunch programs within walking distance. One is free, one is $2 a meal.

Rents here start about $400 for a one bedroom, though to get something decent you probably have to think $600 or more. As a former mill town making a comeback as a cultural destination, there are a lot of possibilities here. I rented when I first arrived, and eventually bought the little cottage I was in for $50,000. It needed work, and still does, but slowly but surely it is becoming quite a lovely little home.

I found the internet a great way to check out a variety of places, and narrowed my choices down to half a dozen before finally deciding. They were in Gainesville, FL, Charlottsville, VA, Bisbee, AZ, and Hot Springs, AR.

That was five years ago, and the relative costs and amenities of each are likely to have changed in that time. At the time, all 5 met my criteria which included a low crime rate, good library, senior center, cultural attractions, lots of nature, a college or two nearby for continued learning, and public transportation. A low cost of renting was also essential.

I did get a bit obsessive about the research, but in the end I feel I made a superb choice. Lately, I am writing again, mostly reviews of area performances and get tickets to some great events for free. With a spare ticket, I can often find someone with a car to entice into driving me.

Good luck with your search. I had to be pretty creative with my solution, but with some luck, you should do well!
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Old 10-24-2007, 03:17 PM
 
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Lately Madison, WI has been getting a lot of hype and top as one of the top walking, bicycling and most livable cities. Being in the Midwest I would imagine that rents would be cheap compared to NYC. Might be worth looking into.
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