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Old 24-08-2008, 16:18   #1
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starting the life

hello cruisers,

This is my first post though I've been reading this site for months. I'm hoping to start cruising in about five years and am in the beginng stages of somewhat of a plan! I'm looking for cruisers in the 30-35 year range or people who started cruising around that age. I'm 25 and plan on setting sail in about five years starting on the east coast and heading south towards the Caribbean. Any tips or pointers from people who have done the same long before retirement is what I'm looking for. Nothing against the retired cruisers here I'd love to hear from u as well just want to sort of see what type of obstacles I'm up against leaving at such a young age. A little background, I do have a good job I'm trying to pay off my house so I have rental income, will pay cash for my boat and upgrades, like the looks of cape dory's 27-30' singlehanded... Any input on the boat would be good, want a kitty big enough for a minimum of 5 years then maybe find work at US territories or maybe I'll have enough not sure. I'd love to hear stories and tips.
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Old 24-08-2008, 19:38   #2
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help tips or similar. Stories

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Originally Posted by rydstn View Post
hello cruisers,

This is my first post though I've been reading this site for months. I'm hoping to start cruising in about five years and am in the beginng stages of somewhat of a plan! I'm looking for cruisers in the 30-35 year range or people who started cruising around that age. I'm 25 and plan on setting sail in about five years starting on the east coast and heading south towards the Caribbean. Any tips or pointers from people who have done the same long before retirement is what I'm looking for. Nothing against the retired cruisers here I'd love to hear from u as well just want to sort of see what type of obstacles I'm up against leaving at such a young age. A little background, I do have a good job I'm trying to pay off my house so I have rental income, will pay cash for my boat and upgrades, like the looks of cape dory's 27-30' singlehanded... Any input on the boat would be good, want a kitty big enough for a minimum of 5 years then maybe find work at US territories or maybe I'll have enough not sure. I'd love to hear stories and tips.
any help tips or similar stories
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Old 25-08-2008, 13:23   #3
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rydstn,

You may have limited the potential responses by asking for input from cruisers 30-35 years old.
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Old 25-08-2008, 13:52   #4
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Rydstn,

First, GOOD ON YA!!

You sound like you have a good general plan together.

I am not one of the younger set you directed your question to, but I thought I would drop you my 2 cents worth
.

First, from the looking back department. Don't "pay off" the house. DO KEEP IT! Rent it out and use a GOOD management company to take care of it for you. We had to go through 3 companies before we got a good one. Now it is working VERY well and gives us extra $ every month! As long as you are still making payments (less than the rents you get) the interest, upkeep, and all is tax deductible as you now own a business. I can tell you that a good management company WILL save you a LOT of $$ and make you more money than trying to do it yourself or having a friend do it for you.

Second, you might want to consider a Nor'Sea 27 as your cruising boat. It can take you anyplace in the world, yet sit on it's trailer in the back yard when not cruising!

Hope this gives you something to think about....

Greg
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Old 27-08-2008, 10:15   #5
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rydstn,
Let me think back... I first sailed away to the Caribbean on a 32 foot Westsail at age 35 with my wife and young son. We were out for about 2 years. We sold our house and used the money to cruise, along with our savings. We came back with just enough money to carry us through finding jobs again (she is a nurse and I am in the oil business).

We both quit our jobs when we left without any safety net. Scary? Of course! All the older cruisers gave us the same advice when we met them in the anchorages - They all wished they had sailed away when they were younger too!

Being that young we knew we had to return some day and re-integrate into a structured society. My wife was able to get a job within a month after we returned. That helped out while I searched for a job. Finding myself a job was very difficult at the time so I took a low paying job for a year before getting something in my line of work. But it all worked out in the long term.

Before you sail away save as much money as you can and keep a reserve for when you return - that is essential. Then outfit your boat before you leave to whatever level you are comfortable with - but make sure that the important systems work (engine, sails, rigging, etc.). Finally, have the courage to LEAVE! The naysayers will come out of the woodwork (friends and even family) but live your dream - you will never regret it!!!

Hope this helps.
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Old 27-08-2008, 10:35   #6
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Hi there rydstn,

Im 26 and we're setting off next year! whooohoooo! Im so excited!
We bought our boat about 5 years ago and have slowly built her up into something we are happy living on. We've now lived aboard for 18 months.
I guess we're a little unique because although I am going to give up work (8 months and counting) my fiance can continue his job from the boat. He's worked hard to cut his role down so he can monitor the company from abroad and only make the odd trip home.
My biggest advice for you is to just go for it. I know it sounds corny, but we have met so many people who 'wish they could do that'. However, my mother is completely against the idea. She strongly believes that I should work until I'm 60 to pay off a mortgage on a house I dont want, upgrade my car and buy the latest in high tech televisions. She has worked hard her entire life to do that, and I understand that these things are important to HER, but not to me. You need to work out what is important to you and then stick to your guns.
Its not all sitting in the cockpit drinking cocktails. There was a night a few years ago where we had to stay up all night in our underwear trying to hold our boat still as she bounced off rocks that shouldn't have been there (we were told the harbour was deep enough for us- it wasn't!) It was such a horrible night, listening to the rocks scraping against our hull (see brixham to bridport on www.sailingmissmoneypenny.com) but by contrast the days before it had been some of our best sailing to date. Its a funny life like that.
Paying off your house for rental is a good plan, but remember that you will have occassions where people need to contact you- perhaps if the heating breaks or there is a leak etc. I imagine this is fairly easy to deal with, but its something to consider.
The only other advice I can offer boatwise is go as small as you possibly can live with. The bigger the boat, the higher the marina fees, maintenance costs and general upkeep. If you want to live on your rental income, a smaller boat will help enormously. Read lots of books and this forum contains an incredible amount of info. Ask questions, figure out what you want and then go get it.
Hope some of this gets your head thinking along the right lines and best of luck... its exciting escaping the 'box' isn't it!?!
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Old 27-08-2008, 11:10   #7
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rydstn,

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Originally Posted by miss-m View Post
Paying off your house for rental is a good plan, but remember that you will have occassions where people need to contact you- perhaps if the heating breaks or there is a leak etc.
EXACTLY!
That is why we have a rental company watch the house for us! From the first few months rent they keep (in our account) an amount of $$. If the renter has a problem, they call the agent NOT US! The agent has a group of people/companies that work for him and the problem gets fixed FAST and at far less cost to me (the owner) than it would be if I was calling for help! It's a sweet deal and they deposit our funds directly to our account.

We don't live on only the income, but it helps a lot! If we had departed with just one bag of $$ it would make that bag last a lot longer.

Greg
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Old 01-09-2008, 17:24   #8
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I'm really glad to hear all the encouragment, I thought I might be crazy with this plan. Although returning to my house is not something I think I'll ever do that's part of why I want to pay it off. I figure if I ever want to come back I'll have it if not I'll sell it after time. In the mean time I actually have relatives who own quite a few rental properties and am planning to have them manage it while I'm gone. Also I have a good enough job and benefits now that I think I can set up to roll over a 401k into an IRA for later in life and hopefully live off income from stocks I will sell prior to leaving. It looks like I'll have to live off that for quite a few years beore retirement kicks in so any suggestions on amount of money I'd need to gain sufficent interest to live off would be good, I have some ideas but opioniins or experiences would be great. Not sure where I'll go start east coast US and head south as I gain more experience keep going and wouldn't throw out ideas of circumnavigation.
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