Where do I wanna live when I grow up?

posted by Jeff | Tuesday, March 23, 2021, 9:29 PM | comments: 0

I finally figured out my midlife crisis, and it's fortunately not prostitutes and cocaine. I won't rule out a Porsche just yet, but mostly in trying to game out retirement. As I often say, I'm half way between wearing diapers and wearing diapers, so now's a good time to think about this.

I think I've got a fighting chance at making up for the dipshittery of my 20's and early 30's (not saving). But wow, all of the financial outcomes are tied pretty hard to property. We reset the clock yet again refinancing the house late last year, because the rates dropped our payment several hundred dollars. We're 30 years out again, but have way more equity in a house we'll leave before paying off. What will the next place look like? Downsized? Same area? Coastal living? Mountains? Overseas? Private island?

The usual caveats apply... I couldn't have predicted where I am now ten years ago, and the crazy thing is that's exciting to me now instead of terrifying.

What I'm struggling with right now is an obsession with the ocean. The sound of the waves brings me great peace, whether it's on a ship or on the beach. Logically I follow that I should live on the beach, much as I realized getting away from Midwest gray skies would feel better. I just don't know if that's a transient sentiment or something fundamentally me, and in either case, I don't know if Diana would really dig it.

If it really is our permanent vacation, how does it look? I'm not interested in condos. Maybe townhomes are OK, but the bottom line is that it has to be a single-family house, and I'm not sure if we could really afford that. And what of the timing? Try to buy now and rent it out (hopefully covering an expensive mortgage and insurance)? Buy an empty lot while they still exist? Find a shit hole that needs rehab? Keep saving and buy in our 60's? There's no playbook for this.

All of these outcomes are also contingent on economic prosperity, which frankly seems fragile. I might have a new sense of adventure, but I have no faith in "the system."

Of course, the beach is just one idea. I don't want to really deal in winter in old age, so that limits me to tropical and desert locales. Also Hawaii, but that seems out of reach because it's so expensive.

This is what a year spent 95% at home will do to you.


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