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Old 01-09-2003, 07:12   #1
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Keeping the house

Hi all,

I've still got a few years before I can retire and can cruise.I've been debating though about when I get to that point,what I should do with my house? Should I sell it,or keep it. I've thought a time or two about living a "snow bird"type of lifestyle.I live in NC,and I would sail in the winter months,and then return here in the hottest summer months.The mountains here are nice in cool in the summer.On the other hand, I think that when I begin cruising, that's all I'll want to do year round.How many of you faced this dilemma,and what decision did you make? What is your recommendation? Thanks!
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Old 03-09-2003, 12:35   #2
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Selling the House?

Stede.
I faced the same dicision about three years ago. My wife passed away in 2000. We had talked about cruising and living aboard, but had never taken the big step. as most ladies are somehow tied to the nest, I respected my wife's point of view. How ever, when she passed away I made the decision to sell the house, retire and move aboard. one strong reason was that keeping the house would be a very expensive way to store all the things I would probably never need or use again. I have now been a liveaboard going on three years, and have no regrets. Should I ever need to move on land again, I'm sure my children would provide a space in their homes. I hope that I will not have the need for a land based domicile. I can stay at the dock on my boat if I get too feeble to sail her.
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Old 03-09-2003, 12:47   #3
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Cool Change,

Hey,I'm really sorry to hear about your wife. I'm sure it's been a very tough time for you,but it sounds like you and your daughter are adjusting. Thanks for your insight.I really appreciate it. It's just the kind of experienced viewpoint I was looking for.
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Old 27-09-2003, 01:13   #4
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Stede
We will be leaving in about 1 1/2 years for full time cruising and have decided to keep our house. It is paid off and in a good real estate market so it has been my best investment. Our niece will be staying in the house and paying enough rent to cover taxes, insurance , and maintinence. It is a good deal for both of us as she gets below market rent and we have a place to store our stuff and come back to for a month or two each year. She loves the house and is looking forward to living here and I know she will take care of it. We will have her move in about 6 months before we leave so she has an idea of what is involved in maintaining the house. We could make much more renting to strangers but so far that money is not critical to our cruising plans and I am afraid of the house getting trashed or dealing with renter problems from thousands of miles away.

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Old 27-09-2003, 21:24   #5
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Steve Rust,

Of all the different cruising scenarios I've read posted by sailors, your set up has to be the sweetest. I mean to be able to keep your house and rent it out to a relative you trust, will be very reassuring as you sail about. When you need a break from sailing, or just a time to rest, you can go back home. Your set up is exactly what I would like to do, but I just don't have a good plan yet. You see, I live in the mountains of NC. It's very beautiful here. There are waterfalls within a 30 minute drive from my house. The mountains have really gotten into my blood, almost as much as sailing.I've been fortunate in that I've had some good boses that have allowed me to take up to three weeks of vacation at a time to do some sailing trips on my boat,and chartered boats.I normally keep my 26 foot boat on a lake about a hours drive from my home,that is also very beautiful.The mountains surround the lake off in the distance.I'm nine years from retiring from a major corporation. Sometimes I think I'll go ahead and sell everything and take off before I retire, and then other times when I look out my front window at the mountains, I start scheming to find some way to have both. This may sound like a simple decision to some, but believe me, it drives me crazy. Ideally, I would like to spend the winters sailing in the Bahamas and Caribbean, and then spend the summers here in the mountains where it's cool,green,and beautiful. My daughter graduates high school in a couple of years, and that's when I will decide for sure, but in the mean time, someone talk some sense into me!
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Old 17-10-2007, 06:07   #6
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I hear you when you say you can relate to "her" need to have a nest to feather!
WHen we were looking at moving to Florida, my wife (then fiance) and I put our name in for a slip in the municipal marina in Delray Beach Florida.

Well after 7.5 years our name finally came up! We had already SOLD the house, and we were renting - waiting for the down RE market to hit bottom before buying again.

So our name comes up and I suggest we buy a live aboard boat (as opposed to the boat we now sail) and move into the Marina. Nope! Won't do! She wants her house. So instead of an $800 a month slip fee and a "house" with no payment (I would have paid cash for the boat), I find myself once again looking at overpriced waterfront real estate!

Excuse me, I must now get back to work so I can pay the mortgage next month.

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Old 17-10-2007, 06:36   #7
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Stede, My wife amd I spent a lot of time cruising 20+ years ago. We are leaving for southern latitudes and warm weather additudes in a few weeks. We chose to keep the house and rented a "Room" to a cruising couple that needs to stay North for a year or so. They will have full run of the house, I don't need to "Loose" the cat, and we do not need to move all the usless junk that has mysteriously found its way into our house. We want to be sure cruising is still what we want to do and having a land base to come back to takes the pressure off. It will cost more but I see it as cheap insurance for the first year at least. There are good people out there to watch over your home and there is no price tag on mental health. Take off a while and then make a command decision.
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Old 17-10-2007, 06:51   #8
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Hi Stede

Stede

We live the exact live style that you describe. We move aboard our sailboat next week and will return around May 1. This will be our third winter cruising. During the summer we are in the NC mountains (Ashe County). We left after our youngest daughter had started her sophomore year and our oldest was a senior, both at Appalachian State. (I'm certain that the folks from Michigan now know where Boone is!!!!!!!)

We worked and owned a nice home outside of Charlotte. After our first winter on the boat, we sold that house and bought a shack for $88,000. We've remodeled it and it's all that we need during the summer. This life style is fantastic. We have the best of both worlds.

If I recall correctly, you are in Asheville. Not certain that you can still by anything cheaply in that area!!!
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Old 17-10-2007, 07:15   #9
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Stede,

If at all possible, keep the house. Winter on your boat down south and come home in the summer. That's what we've been doing. I love boats but after six months it's good to come back to flush toilets, besides what would we do with all the stuff we spent 30 years accumulating? I have met many couples who sold the house to go cruising, most regret not having a home base and eventually all come ashore. It is different if you're a lot younger, sell your house, go cruising and after a few years come back to pick up a career and in effect start over. But at the end of your working life, keep the house. Notice I'm speaking of couples, if you're single, what the heck, sell the house.
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Old 17-10-2007, 07:19   #10
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Just checked the date on Stede's post. He must have gone my now. Wonder what he did.
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Old 17-10-2007, 07:23   #11
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Depends on your cruising goals. The place on the dirt limits some options and adds a few.

Right now we are cruising about 6 months per year. It has been a pleasant life style. We consider leaving the boat and flying home instead of sailing back north each spring so we could venture farther a field. My wife says I would miss the boat if I didn’t have it here.

We purchased a house where we want to live, East Coast with good cruising grounds and easy access to the ICW. When the day comes, we can’t or no longer want to make extended cruises, we will downsize the boat and cruise waters nearer home. We don’t have waterfront property but are within two miles of our marina.

Our long term plan included paying cash for house and boat so no big mortgage on either. Still keeping up with both house and boat stretches us physically and makes the $$ tighter.

We are now considering storing a bunch of stuff and renting the house out for a couple of years. We should be able to get positive cash flow out of the deal.

There is a degree of comfort in knowing that if one of us gets hurt or seriously ill, we have a place to go without imposing on family. While the US real estate market is in a slump right now, I view it as more of a correction than a permanent change. The chance that we would be unable to afford a similar place in a few years is high.

Like so many things in cruising, power or sail, mono or multi, it depends on the individual. Look at the pros and cons and make your own call.

George
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Old 17-10-2007, 08:08   #12
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I see the house decision as a very personal one. Keep or Sell? Thanks to the people who have put there reasoning in on this thread. It helps to make an informed decision,

Before Beth and I got married we had an agreement that we were going to go cruising but that we wouldn't sell everything (in other words Keep the house) before we left. I am honoring that agreement. I hope to pay the house off in 5 to 10 years. In the mean time we will be commuter cruising spending only a few weeks or a couple of months on the boat at a time.
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Old 17-10-2007, 08:58   #13
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In a similar thread a year or so ago someone made this comment. I thought it quite appro:

"Stuff has gravity; where every your stuff is (house included) you'll orbit it".

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Old 17-10-2007, 10:31   #14
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Hi All
Nice answers.
Recently , like last two weeks had to take the decision ourselves.
Bought house in 94,
Working abroad (again) in 96 onwards but house rented.
House gained in value nearly 300%
Now selling house to get smaller house in Turkey. Paying cash.
Boat in Marina 150 meters away.
30 grand in bank.
Still 9 years to work but looking good.

Steve
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