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Old 21-09-2009, 06:16   #31
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So any comments on where to start this new adventure are greatly welcome. Maybe with some help from you, we can narrow down one or two destinations to call home. I guess what I would also like to know is what hasn't worked for some of you. If you had a 'do-over' what would it be?

Seeing as how we are all being so darned honest...

43 isn't old. It's barely mid-life. You've done extremely well so far but figure you guys go well into your 80s, 2 million just doesn't go that far.

Acquiring several rental properties, sticking with something you know spreads your risk and creates a cash flow. Stick some in long term fixed deposits and you have your escape parachute.

With 3 kids not yet through college you still have lots of things to pay for.

However, you have great lattitude to restructure your life to something more like you want. A lot of it is personal choice.

You have at least an honesty about your lifestyle that is realistic. Nothing wrong with stating you don't want to live on a lesser budget and we shouldn't judge.

One thing is clear. You should get near the water. Vegas is great weather wise but not entirely conducive to a nautical life.

All things considered I would do Florida or PNW. Southern California cruising would get stale for me simply because there doesn't seem to be enough destinations.
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Old 21-09-2009, 07:49   #32
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get the boat of your dreams, hire an on-board crew and nanny and hit the water. The boat will be taken care of when you're not there and when you are, you won't have to do anything.
just sit around and compare.
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Old 21-09-2009, 07:51   #33
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What would I do?

1. I'd investigate fractional ownership options offered by the charter companies to see if they gave me the 3 months or so desired to sail at the time I wanted. As someone who currently has one boat in charter and one I own normally, it really makes me appreciate, just showing up and having the boat ready and at the same time not having to pay many of the costs of normal ownership. If that worked, I'd do it, if not I'd buy a used cat 5-10 years old and probably keep it in Florida, convenient to the Bahamas.

2. I'd investigate nice areas to live that have good education and the opportunity to work part time balanced against cost of living. I probably would not pick Florida. I'd be sailing Florida/Bahamas/Caribbean in the winter. I don't need to live in Florida in the summer. I'd look for a more northern climate and escape the winter to sail. I'd buy a small affordable second boat for weekend/evening sails.

3. I'd seek professional advice on how to invest my money given my current and future goals. Do you wish to fully retire in a few more years or keep working part time? Does your part-time income meet your day to day living expenses? The answer to these questions will likely influence what risk should be taken with your investments.

Question: How does the 4 or so months of sailing work with kids who are school age? Will you be spending time sailing without them? Home schooling?
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Old 21-09-2009, 08:30   #34
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I worked out a deal to move into this condo and sold my fancy car and most of my possessions, because I realized it wasn't the possessions that brought me happiness, and then I bought the boat and now I plan on living there and maybe taking off in a year for a 6 month sabbatical.

I totally agree..if there is one thing I have learned in my 55yrs from having lots of toys over the years (airplanes, cars, boats).... "Stuff" just slows you down... simplify your life and help others along the way...

But you will have to home school the kids or you will be stuck on the goodie grand prix... get away while you still can... make a difference in your kids life... maybe you can take along an aupar, just make sure she is very unattractive...

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Old 21-09-2009, 08:51   #35
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Andre,
I understand you, and I am also 42 and also feel like retiring and ask myself why cant I just brake the ties and go out and circumnavigate. But then I realized something, you and I, are bored with what we do. My advise to you would be the following: 1st) can you relocate your business? 2) Do you have someone you can trust to run your business while your are gone? 3) Buy the boat you want and do a nice long trip, circumnavigate the globe, if its what you like you will keep doing it, if its not you will quit in one year or less but you will have fulfilled your needs.
Do not rush to buy a house somewhere else, take your kids off school for one year , (they will learn far more underway anyway). When you are done, you can settle wherever you want.
BTW I also seek help but only in the right Catamaran department, I am already selling my house to go for a long trip and then decide where to settle again.
If you have any comments on a good used Cat under 48 feet and under USD 400k let me know.
Best of luck on you decision.
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Old 21-09-2009, 10:16   #36
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The two of you have an interesting set of decisions to make.

You want to cruise, with your kids, but don't want to homeschool. (Believe me, I'm sympathetic to your position. Between my wife and I we have 7 university degrees and we wouldn't think of homeschooling. Not that we couldn't handle the academic part, rather it is the social part. There are lots of developmental things that happen with peers that simply can't be replicated in the homeschool situation. Obviously, that is a generalization and isn't true for everyone, but assuming that you have "typical" kids, there's a lot that would be missed.) You want good schools for your kids. Good for you, that is so important and shows that you have a good sense of your responsibilities as parents.

You have a successful business and have done well in accumulating an impressive amount of savings. Good for you, now you want to make sound decisions for keeping it, yet also have some fun. That fun includes sailing and cruising.

As others have pointed out, the problem comes in finding a place where you can have some sailing/cruising without taking the kids out of school, while also keep your business interests going.

Others have mentioned it, now I'm going to strongly suggest it: the Pacific Northwest, specifically the Seattle/Bainbridge up to Bellingham area. Why?

1. Some truly excellent public schools. The Seattle district has some outstanding magnet schools for kids with particular interests. Mercer Island (in Lake Washington), Bainbridge Island (in Puget Sound, across from Seattle), and Bellingham (up by the Canadian border and close to the San Juans) all have excellent schools that consistently rank as the best in the state. Much of the reason for this is the demographics of their districts: relatively well off, high proportion of college graduates, relatively stable (i.e., not transient) adult population. Now, these are certainly not the only ones in the area, but the reason for suggesting them is #2.

2. Close to the water, if not on the water, good sailing infrastructure and cruising. Water is everywhere up here. If you haven't been here, before, then I can best sum it up like this: It is like living in a national park. Natural beauty surrounds us. The San Juans/Gulf Islands and up to Desolation Sound is simply some of the prettiest sailing you will ever see, anywhere. It is very different from tropical sailing, however! Touch bottom around here and it likely won't be sand, but granite. Some serious tides and currents, too, not to mention fog at times when you go, "where the heck did that come from?" But, all that is part of the charm. The best sailing is not in the summer, however, since the winds tends to be light, but it is the time for the best cruising, since the weather is also mild and the days are quite long. The downside is the winter, which although not usually snowy in the lowlands, is cool, wet, and short days. You just have to gut it out until Spring, which is spectacular.

3. I don't know about your business stuff. I have some friends who are RE agents and they say times are tough. But, good people seem to always make it through and if you've figured out a way to do in Vegas right now, then you probably wouldn't have too much of a problem.

4. If I were you, I'd consider holding on to your Catalina and postponing the cat. The Catalina is a reasonable sized boat and since your kids are going to be ruled by the school calendar (hence, you will be, too) for at least another 12 years, then the longest you can be aboard is for 6 weeks, anyway. Find a marina for the boat, use it on weekends and holidays and keep socking away money.

Frankly, it sounds like you're having quite a bit of cognitive dissonance (fancy term for when your gut and your head don't agree). You find the "idea" of cruising quite attractive (and, it is), but many of practical realities give you cause for concern. My advice is to pay attention to those -- nothing's more important than your kids and their health and welfare is an investment not just for you, but for all of us. This isn't to say that cruising with kids can't be successful -- it can. But, it does require alterations and lifestyle choices that, at least right now, you either aren't willing or don't feel capable, of making. Look at Welcome to Yacht Scud and s/v Ocelot Cruising the World for examples where it has. (By the way, I've met the Scuds -- their kids have turned out wonderfully.)

Most of the other stuff (cooking and maintenance) is simply a matter of committing yourself to learning it. Even with your financial resources, you don't have enough to hire people to do it for you. Also, even if you did, you will find yourself in an entirely different segment of the boating world. One that, to my mind, misses out on much of what cruising is all about. Take some classes -- you might even find yourself enjoying it. There's something very rewarding about taking on a problem and solving it.

Good luck to you. Keep us apprised of your decisions.

ID
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Old 21-09-2009, 14:12   #37
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Originally Posted by Intentional Drifter View Post
The two of you have an interesting set of decisions to make.

You want to cruise, with your kids, but don't want to homeschool. (Believe me, I'm sympathetic to your position. Between my wife and I we have 7 university degrees and we wouldn't think of homeschooling. Not that we couldn't handle the academic part, rather it is the social part. There are lots of developmental things that happen with peers that simply can't be replicated in the homeschool situation. Obviously, that is a generalization and isn't true for everyone, but assuming that you have "typical" kids, there's a lot that would be missed.) You want good schools for your kids. Good for you, that is so important and shows that you have a good sense of your responsibilities as parents.



ID

We have home schooled all 3 of our girls up until last year when we entered them into a home school charter school...We have always gotten tons of comments on how well adjusted ,positive, polite and look you in the eye self confidant and mature our kids are. Thank God mine missed out on all you say they missed out on..
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Old 21-09-2009, 15:03   #38
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Thank you once again for your reply's.

I see that my Wife has added her thoughts also. That is great - Hi Honey I was just Joking about that Thailand thing.

Ex-Calif- thanks again for your observations- You are very wise! (did you speak with my shrink or something). You once again have a very logical solution. I was planning on buying a couple rentals in next few years here.

Craig- Nice boat in key west. I love Key West. Not too sure of it as kid friendly though -but it would be pretty logical place to have a boat down there and live in upper keys-key Largo area maybe.

Augusto- Yes I am bored with what I do to a certain degree-and it sounds like you are a couple steps ahead of me and able to break the ties. Congrats on selling the house already.

International Drifter- Fantastic post. makes a lot of sense. I especially like the "cognitive dissonance (fancy term for when your gut and your head don't agree)" - which is me exactly. Our Children are obviously the most important part of our lives. As parents we always worry if we are doing the right or wrong thing. Thank you for the support in the home schooling matter. We have been to Seattle,Vancouver,Victoria. It is a great area. I love the scenery. My wife would love to move up there in a heart beat and even enlisted a realtor to look on Vashon Island a couple years back. My situation though is I am definatley a warm weather, warm water, shorts , t shirt and flip flops person who needs a lot of sun-I actually find the So Cal water chilly for my taste. Once in NJ, in the Mid 90's it rained for 8 straight days continually and I wanted to hang my self - which eventually led to the relocation in Las Vegas. So the Pac NW winters with sometimes 40 straight days of rain would be a hinderance to my physcological well being. But the Summers would be great - though I do prefer water temps over 75 deg and more like 85 deg.

Stillraining- interesting user name and I see you are from the Pac NW- So that answers my question on that. As far as the home schooling question. there isnt a right answer. I am kind of Int Drifter's side about this though.
I wont even send my kids to a private school because I feel it takes away from their social development. It is important at least in my mind to experiance all of those growing pains and high school social stuff-for better or worse. It Helps define you. Myself- I still havent forgiven my parents for yanking me out of Public school and sending me to a snotty all-boys school for my later school years. Did I learn more?- sure . Did it cost me socially-most definately and still to this day in some regards. It is a personal choice however. Okay time for me to book another appt at the shrink.

This has been so helpful -though its making my wifes head spin a little.
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Old 21-09-2009, 15:27   #39
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The common rule of thumb is that you can take 3% per year out of a corpus and have a 97% probability of it lasting indefinitely (assumes proper diversification). So subtract the boat and the house from the kitty multiply by 3% and you have your annual allowance.
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Old 21-09-2009, 15:57   #40
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Thank you once again for your reply's.



Okay time for me to book another appt at the shrink.

This has been so helpful -though its making my wifes head spin a little.
Cancel the shrink and save the money for the boat!

This place, as you have said, can provide all the same answers.
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Old 21-09-2009, 16:46   #41
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The common rule of thumb is that you can take 3% per year out of a corpus and have a 97% probability of it lasting indefinitely (assumes proper diversification). So subtract the boat and the house from the kitty multiply by 3% and you have your annual allowance.
I've seen 3% and 4%; we're sticking with 3%.

Vegasandre: Until you can really address the schooling issue for the kids your options are limited to vacations. That is, unless you send them to a boarding school. On the other hand, it also gives you time to train up a manager, get your investments online and scout out options about where to base out of.

As for the money, at a bit under 2M$ you have the ability to invest in multiple asset classes AND use different strategies. I think this is a wise idea and happens to be the basis of (post-) modern portfolio theory.
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Old 21-09-2009, 17:39   #42
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I can't remember the names of the schools that cater to kids on extended sailing holidays, but I've heard there are some very good ones. There is a curriculum and list of books you would need to buy. The kids stay in touch via internet with their teachers. This is meant for kids whose parents are taking them to far-flung places, and along with with the learning that happens through sailing and travel, the kids get a very well-rounded education.
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Old 21-09-2009, 17:49   #43
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You have the answers

Andre,

You and your wife have gotten some great advice here that a short while ago would have cost you a bit of change to acquire, but...

Let's face it, you already have the answers, you just need help in cutting down on the distracting "noise" that will let you focus and ask yourselves the right questions (for you!) and get the right answers (for you!). You mention a therapist - don't know if that is serious or in jest, but I would urge you to seek one out that will help you resolve the gut v head conflicts.

Fair Winds,
Mike
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Old 21-09-2009, 18:05   #44
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Old 21-09-2009, 19:25   #45
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I've seen 3% and 4%; we're sticking with 3%.

That's PRE-TAX ! but with all the PPT and personal exemptions, maybe good enough...

Cheers
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