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Old 01-10-2018, 04:36 PM
1,316 posts, read 1,734,429 times
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We dreamed of moving to Colorado for many years. Though we would have preferred to stay where we were, rising costs were not sustainable in retirement so had to make a decision. Also were ready for a big change. We began getting serious about five years ago and made several week long visits to check out towns, neighborhoods etc. Lots of online research. We really could not afford to sell, rent for a year, and "try it out" so we made the leap. There are some regrets as the general vibe we knew from our many trips has changed over the last few years (Marijuana legalization has hastened a lot of unsavory folk to come here) and the food scene (which is important to us) is lackluster. But so far, things are very affordable and seeing the mountains everyday is wonderful. However, I believe it takes way more than a year to figure out the ins and outs of a place so we went ahead and bought a house here. For now, we are here but open to changing it up again or going back "home".
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Old 01-10-2018, 06:28 PM
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I've been thinking about the folks that lost their homes in California due to Fire and Flood, as Well as the ones in Texas to hurricanes this year. I'm from VERY Rural Alabama originally and have travelled all over. I've lived here, on the outskirts of Byhalia, MS for the last 12 years and will remain here for my retirement. Our property taxes on our 2500 sq foot house is under $500 year with Homestead exemption. I'm a Veteran so my health care facility is only 40 minutes away in Memphis, TN. We are in MARSHALL county which does not have the best school reputations which keeps land and home prices LOW. However, the schools have IMPROVED over the past decade or so, plus there is a Private School ($230 a month) about a mile from me. I have invested in a "Flip" house about a mile from me that is just about ready to sell, 1029 square foot, 3 bedroom ONE bath on 1.3 acres of land for just $65K, COMPLETELY REFURBISHED. I don't think you can buy an empty LOT in California for that! Low crime too
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Old 01-10-2018, 09:56 PM
Location: Northern California
436 posts, read 195,196 times
Reputation: 552
Originally Posted by otterhere View Post
Of course it's routinely recommended -- and even expected -- that one will personally visit any destination to which one considers retiring, but that's not always possible or feasible due to limited funds, family responsibilities, time constraints (especially if still working), etc.

How much and what kind of advance preparation did you make, how did you reach your decision, and what steps did you take to ensure that the plan at which you arrived was truly the best one for you -- or has anyone moved more or less "blindly" and just hoped for the best? If so, how did that go???

Share with us your experiences, good or bad.
We put our most important priorities first-clean air. Hoping for hubby to get off the nightly CPAP Machine. Moved 2 months ago. He's lost 10 lbs. Its winter so we aren't cycling as much as I'd hoped plus got sick but cannot argue with the progress made so far. I've lost 1/2 a pants size. So maybe around 6 lbs lost so far.

We chose to live 1 1/2 hrs away from my work but high enough in clean air. So the drive 2x per week (once there, once back) is alot worse than expected. But such is life. The house is so comfortable and homey. The people are wonderful though it's a small town of 200 regulars, otherwise tourists are up seasonally to hike the buttes, mtn bike ride in the nearby town, or snow-mobile if it's a good winter. I do wish this town was less expensive though.

We've joined the hiking club already. The only thing I didn't research is the medical care. So I drive 1.5 hrs. But the hospital is an hour away so that's probably not good as we get older.

We are not retired but it feels like it. He's semi-retired but has plenty of work in a town about an hour away. I work full time Wed-Friday each week. Keeping my eyes open for jobs in or near our town but there aren't alot of them. I researched for 1 year before visiting. There is no way we'd move anywhere without visiting first.

What i find odd is there are no crazies in our town. None whatsoever. Not one soul who ruins life for other people. There was one guy...but we bought his house so he's moved to Nevada.
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Old 01-11-2018, 05:26 AM
Location: Dayton, OH
600 posts, read 271,874 times
Reputation: 2607
Originally Posted by brightdoglover View Post
Humidity makes me crazy with misery and that would be true anywhere.
Boy, do I hear you. Sweat running through your hair and down your scalp. Mowing grass and pulling weeds as sweat drips off your nose. Peeling undergarments off your body at the end of the day. Sticking to your sheets. Ugh. Just no.

That's why I am strongly considering retiring to WY. From my research so far, the biggest drawbacks (for most people) seem to be the weather, the wind (which I consider to be part of the weather), and the social isolation. The lack of state income tax and drastically lower property taxes compared to where I live now are powerful draws.

I have visited in July; the hot summers in WY are so dry that you don't break a sweat, and I'll take freezing cold over miserably hot any day. My best friend lives in FL now, and she says she goes from her A/C house to her A/C car to her A/C office. So in WY, I will go from my heated house to my heated car to my heated public building of choice. :-)

As for the social isolation, I generally prefer my own company and that of my dogs to other people, and my favorite hobbies are solitary pursuits. I certainly won't miss the traffic jams, the lines, the crowds, or the suburban retail sprawl.

I am planning a trip to CO and WY this fall, and I do still need to visit in January or February to experience the worst of the winter weather. The relative higher cost of WY housing, coupled with the lack of transparency and public information regarding real estate transactions, continue to be off-putting, but I remind myself that the lower taxes and better quality of life should more than compensate for that.

After all, there is no perfect place.
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Old 01-11-2018, 05:51 AM
Location: Vermont
1,371 posts, read 461,009 times
Reputation: 2022
Great discussion. I started another thread about things to consider for retirement, things I might miss, or things you thought of afterwards that might have changed your trajectory.
I agree about relocating. Although I live in frigid Vermont, a very expensive place with high taxes and not much to offer for it, I'm taking my time about a future move. I would really like to get away from the long winter. Have looked in NC and TN and am going back to NC this summer.
Have been to WY and surprisingly just really didn't like the landscape much. Of course, we were near Jackson Hole, Cody, and then Dubois. Jackson Hole way too expensive, and not much going on in the other 2 cities, but that's not to say other locations such as Laramie might not fit someone's need. WY does not tax pensions, which is why we looked there.
I lived in Denver and Vail, CO for a number of years, but have not considered going back there mainly because of the marijuana situation, although I'm sure eventually it will be legal everywhere and there will be nowhere to hide from it Thanks for bringing that up!

My thought is figuring out the relocation part before retiring because it would probably be difficult to start spending a bunch of money to move once you have retired.
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Old 01-11-2018, 06:26 AM
Location: Dayton, OH
600 posts, read 271,874 times
Reputation: 2607
Originally Posted by LookingatFL View Post

Time causes change. My life is different now. This city has grown and is different. Crime is becoming a big factor here too. Real estate prices have risen very quickly. Most of the reasons that caused me to leave FL have arrived here.
And where, generally speaking, is "here"?
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Old 01-11-2018, 06:31 AM
Location: Dayton, OH
600 posts, read 271,874 times
Reputation: 2607
Originally Posted by tijlover View Post
Doing too much research can make you frustratingly indecisive. As the saying goes: choice is agony, choicelessness is freedom!
AKA analysis paralysis - a weakness of mine, I confess.
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Old 01-11-2018, 06:36 AM
Location: Dayton, OH
600 posts, read 271,874 times
Reputation: 2607
Originally Posted by nightbird47 View Post
it wasn't perfect and won't be, but i'm good. It's when you expect things to be perfect or you can't settle comfortably that you will have a hard time finding a place to land.
^^^ this!
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Old 01-11-2018, 06:55 AM
Location: Dayton, OH
600 posts, read 271,874 times
Reputation: 2607
Originally Posted by Happy in Wyoming View Post
If I wish to learn about a place, I visit its grocery stores. I'll see both the quality and the price (they are different) of the foods, the presence of ethnic of ingredients if any, and the sophistication of dining standards. I can also observe the level of cleanliness, always a response to the customer base, and the customers themselves. Everyone buys groceries. The customers reflect a cross section of the area's population.

It's easy enough to do more advanced research by visiting bakeries, delicatessens, and other specialty stores.
Funny you should mention this...

My sons and I recently took a short vacation to Mammoth Caves National Park in KY. This is a beautiful park with astonishing cave tours and wildlife everywhere. We hiked, toured caves and generally had a fabulous time. The location, I might add, is VERY rural.

One night, we went looking for some breakfast groceries to eat in our lodge room the next day. The nearest town (20-30 minutes drive) had a tiny IGA. It wasn't the cleanest. The cashier was very friendly and welcoming, but the selection was limited, the fresh produce was practically non-existent and not in good shape, and the prices all seemed high.

Both of my kiddos commented on how different this little grocery was compared to the Kroger Superstore we shop in at home. "Imagine having to buy all of your groceries here all the time," my oldest said.

Now, I have been thinking about relocating to WY, and the IGA in the small town I am considering may be my most convenient shopping spot if I do. I am no foodie snob by any means, but I do wonder if I will too much miss the variety, relatively low cost, and quality of the groceries I have ready access to now?

Definitely something to consider, and not something a person would necessarily take note of if you are on a one-week scouting trip and eating at restaurants the whole time.
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Old 01-11-2018, 07:06 AM
7,790 posts, read 4,378,976 times
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I must say, the suggestion that a person who wishes to relocate must be running away from something or will never be happy or is searching for an unattainable perfection gets old... I encounter that a lot in my small Midwestern town where no one leaves for generations on end. Some of us just want a change. It's not necessarily symptomatic of some spiritual or emotional malaise...
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