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  1. #61
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
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    Boise Idaho
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    As someone who qualifies for the category I can type this, Have you looked at 55 and older neighborhoods ~ We don't live in one but we do live above our bike shop in a small retail/residential area so am extremely spoiled.
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  2. #62
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    IL/FL
    Posts
    3,863
    I would definitely look at one if they existed in our town, I like little kids but prefer not to live amongst them. There are areas that appeal to retirees so we'll look there.

    Electra Townie 7D

  3. #63
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Indianapolis, Indiana
    Posts
    10,956
    I think it's cool that you're getting back into your old place. Wishing you the best as you consider what might come next. Personally I've never owned, and at this stage in my life I don't see that happening, but I can certainly see the attraction. The next time I move it may well be to a complex that caters to the >55 crowd, I'm certainly there. I find that I appreciate the quiet much more than I once did, though where I currently live is quiet 99% of the time.

  4. #64
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    IL/FL
    Posts
    3,863
    We keep looking at the math, trying to decide if we want to bother buying. In our market it's a wash monthly cost wise between owning and renting. The two differing points come from a) in 20 years you'll have good equity, and b) in 20 years you won't have paid a cent for maintenance. So we go back and forth.

    Electra Townie 7D

  5. #65
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    northern Virginia
    Posts
    5,845
    Financially, buying a condo was not a good decision for me. I didn't realize it when I bought 12 years ago but it was a terrible time for me to buy a place. It was such a seller's market, I ended up with a real fixer-upper because I was outbid on everything else. If I'd known how much it was going to cost to renovate I think I would have continued to rent, at least for a few years if not longer. If I tried to sell it now I would end up getting the same price I paid back then. I don't even have all that much equity, due to having to refinance with an FHA loan and mortgage insurance to get rid of the original adjustable rate mortgage.

    However there are other reasons why I like owning my place instead of renting. And around here rents do seem to increase significantly from year to year, so maybe owning a fixer-upper is not the worst investment.

    It's just a complicated decision.

    As for retirement communities, I think I would at least consider living in one at some point. But yes it would have to be quiet -- solidly built like the pre-war apartments where I lived in NY and Chicago (she types after turning up the TV volume to the max to drown out the clomp-clomp-clomp of the elephant upstairs...).

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  6. #66
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
    Posts
    13,129
    In my opinion, it's always better to buy, unless you are buying something that is going to require a lot of repairs that can break the bank. And sometimes, you never know what is going to come up, with home ownership. Personally, although I live in a very small, cut-de-sac townhouse development, I don't like having to see my neighbors come and go, knowing their daily routines, etc. I know, it's weird, but after 25 years of living in somewhat secluded neighborhoods, it is different. It's not noisy at all and everyone behaves, but I haven't lived this close to neighbors since I left AZ in 1990. I guess that's why all the houses there have block walls around the backyards. I truly only knew the people on either side of me.
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  7. #67
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Western Canada-prairies, mountain & ocean
    Posts
    6,982
    I do know a good close friend in her late 70's, who sold her condo about 15 years ago. She's had to move into an apartment about 5 years ago that's cheaper rent and she likes less because she's running out of money... She has been single for most of her life..in so far she never owned real estate jointly with anyone else.

    I live in a building that has had children..no more than 1-2 small children since the units are smaller. Probably less than 5 families out of 30 units. So the bldg. itself is reasonably quiet. But then there's only 3 units per floor ...so all I have to "worry" about is upstairs which is very rare that there's much noise.
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  8. #68
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    IL/FL
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    3,863
    We watched our 75 year old neighbor get tossed out of the condo she was renting. The owner died and her son put it on the market as fast as he could, so here she is, 75, living on social security, and trying to find an affordable place (subsidized senior places are very rare here). She can't afford to move back to NY, and her daughter is a poor single mom, she can't move in with her because of the subsidy her daughter gets... she is in a terrible spot. She's hoping to find a roommate situation.

    That's the sort of thing that gives me pause, we have money now so perhaps owning would keep the wolf from the door as we age. A paid for place and some money in the bank could go a long way towards peace of mind.

    Electra Townie 7D

  9. #69
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    northern Virginia
    Posts
    5,845
    I've rented condos twice and there are definitely aspects of it that I prefer to regular rental apartments. But yes there is always the risk that the owner will want you gone so they can sell. I got the feeling that the last renter of the place above mine had to leave before she wanted, because the place was put on the market just after she left.

    I think you're generally right about keeping the wolf from the door. Owning a place seems to give more control over expenses. Of course there will be some things that need to be fixed or replaced, and property taxes can be very high in some areas. But the mortgage doesn't increase like rent does, if you have a fixed rate mortgage.

    To Crankin's point, I know when my neighbors come and go and have a general sense of their schedules -- who leaves early for work and when then they typically get home. I know where they're from or where they went to school, from seeing their license plates and car decals. And I see who has dogs and who gets visits from kids who are probably nephews. But I don't know them personally, don't even know what a few of them look like. (I wish I knew which ones are breaking condo policy by putting out garbage at night, because it's getting out of hand. But I digress.)

    I can see the benefits of living in a secluded area but I think I would be creaped out at night any time I heard a strange noise.
    Last edited by ny biker; 07-25-2016 at 07:18 AM.

    - Gray Trek Madone 4.7 road bike, mystery crack in top tube repaired by Calfee, Bontrager Affinity RXL saddle
    - Red Trek 6000 mountain bike, Bontrager Evoke WSD saddle

    Gone but not forgotten:
    - Silver Trek 2000 road bike
    - Two awesome and worn out Juliana saddles

  10. #70
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    IL/FL
    Posts
    3,863
    NY, fortunately for us, home (Central IL where the University of Illinois is) is super affordable, you can still buy a nice home in the $95,000 to $110,000 range, and a newer fancier home in the $135,000 to $165,000 range. We'll be able to pay cash for a place once the FL condo sells; I'd rather have a big fat bank account, but watching it dwindle as we age, and being at the mercy of a landlord's whims doesn't appeal much.

    Electra Townie 7D

  11. #71
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
    Posts
    13,129
    That is really cheap for nice housing....
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  12. #72
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    IL/FL
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crankin View Post
    That is really cheap for nice housing....
    Flyover states (outside of big cities) have some seriously affordable housing. Best kept secret of the Midwest; here it's a combo of a college town and very hard winters, equals a lot of movement in and out of town; tends to keep prices down.

    Electra Townie 7D

  13. #73
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Western Canada-prairies, mountain & ocean
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    6,982
    Quote Originally Posted by ny biker View Post
    To Crankin's point, I know when my neighbors come and go and have a general sense of their schedules -- who leaves early for work and when then they typically get home. I know where they're from or where they went to school, from seeing their license plates and car decals. And I see who has dogs and who gets visits from kids who are probably nephews. But I don't know them personally, don't even know what a few of them look like. (I wish I knew which ones are breaking condo policy by putting out garbage at night, because it's getting out of hand. But I digress.)

    I can see the benefits of living in a secluded area but I think I would be creaped out at night any time I heard a strange noise.
    I actually don't quite understand a profound desire to live in a secluded/isolated area (ie. single detached home) as one becomes a lot older. ie. living far from people. Unless you make sure you have a dog /security system. It does help to have general distant idea of your neighbours.

    I had an employee whose elderly father suffered brain damage after he was beaten by an intruder in his single detached home. The dog prevented further injury... by barking at the intruder..

    My partner's daughter's dog also stopped a thief who broke into her apartment suite...
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  14. #74
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    468
    I think that depends where you live. I live in the middle of nowhere and I prefer it that way. I have a clear view of the mountains from my back deck and no noise from the neighbors who are very far away. I live quite a way down a dirt road up a 17% grade hill. People have to be here as a destination. It's also a dead end. Thieves etc don't seem to like dead end roads -- there's only one way out. I feel completely safe here. I don't feel safe at any time of day or night in the city. It's all what you are used to I guess.

    Quote Originally Posted by shootingstar View Post
    I actually don't quite understand a profound desire to live in a secluded/isolated area (ie. single detached home) as one becomes a lot older. ie. living far from people. Unless you make sure you have a dog /security system. It does help to have general distant idea of your neighbours.

    I had an employee whose elderly father suffered brain damage after he was beaten by an intruder in his single detached home. The dog prevented further injury... by barking at the intruder..

    My partner's daughter's dog also stopped a thief who broke into her apartment suite...
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  15. #75
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
    Posts
    13,129
    I wouldn't call where my last house was as isolated. Just a street on a huge hill (which thieves ignore), with houses on 2 acre lots of woods. I could see the houses of both my neighbors, but I was not close. The house before was in a typical cul de sac newer home neighborhood. The lots were also 1.5 to 2 acres, but mostly lawn and not as big as my last house. It was in a more rural suburb than Concord, but neither of these places qualify as isolated or "country" to me. I don't worry about intruders, etc., maybe because the crime rate is low here. Some think it's weird, because there's a medium security prison in my town, but, it's like part of the fabric of life here, it's on the highway, and has been here since the 1800s. There's also a minimum security prison, here, a farm, where prisoners are trained in various trades. This is right behind the hill and conservation trails of my former neighborhood. We could hear the softball games in the prison yard in the summer. Only once do I remember someone breaking out, and they did not run up the hill to escape... so, what Shooting Star mentions is not even in my thoughts in thinking about where I will live as I age. I certainly don't want to live someplace really rural, as we enjoy the amenities of small town life, with being able to walk to restaurants, shops, etc.
    But the prices that Pax mentions, well, the last time I saw that was when we sold our house in Tempe, AZ, in 1990. I don't think there is anywhere in MA where you can buy for 95K.
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