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Old 08-31-2016, 08:20 PM   #141
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If I were single and without much money, I would get an RV and go camp out in the state parks of New Mexico. The annual permit is $180 for state residents, and $225 for non-residents. If you want electric hookup for AC or heating, it's extra, but only $4/day.

The drawback is that these state parks are in the countryside and outside of cities, and NM does not have that many cities to start out with, this solution works better for people who are recluse. Some RV'ers whose blogs I happen to find travel from north to south of the state of NM to follow the season, and be in comfortable weather year round. When they are tired of state parks, they go to the national forests or state forests.
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Old 08-31-2016, 10:33 PM   #142
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Congratulations, Forced, I'm so glad you are beginning to take charge of your new life! As others have said this plan sounds like several days worth of tasks, not just one. I would also prioritize the ones related to relocation and getting out of the lease. Richmond has some very nice areas. An Aunt lived there for several years and enjoyed both the rural and small city aspects of the area. One thing I would put a low priority on is the consult with Fidelity rep. i assume it is free so worth doing sometime but the likely outcome will be a push to buy an annuity. I'm not a big fan of those. Some on this forum are and you can search on the topic. But, not a decision to be made quickly, in any event, especially as your funds seem to be invested in an acceptable manner for the time being. best to get your expenses reduced, and then think about how you will manage your $300k.
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Old 09-01-2016, 12:04 PM   #143
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Forced - Hope all is going well on your end. Please check back in here sometime and let us know how things progress.
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Old 09-01-2016, 01:32 PM   #144
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Forced - Hope all is going well on your end. Please check back in here sometime and let us know how things progress.
Thanks for asking and caring. There has been an incredible number of replies and views of my posting. It shows that early retirement is not all smiles and joy for many. Or maybe the word fear got someone's attention.

An update on my situation.

I pushed the property management company again about letting me out of my lease and they again said ...NO! I thought I had six months on my lease, but instead it is eight months. My rent is about $2500.00 a month so I will be paying about $20,000 to pay off the lease. If I were to move to a place like Richmond I could move into a nice one bedroom for about $800 a month, so could have saved $13,600 in the next eight month and forward.

QUESTION: Do you think towns with an older population and less immigrants are more open to hiring people over 60 years old? (I have no proof but it seems like most of the part time jobs here go to immigrants or kids.

Until I can get away from my overpriced apartment, my life is on hold.
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Old 09-01-2016, 01:41 PM   #145
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YOur life is not on hold unless you choose that. Do as many have suggested and rent an apartment where you want to live and can afford to and then give notice in writing to your landlord with no forwarding address. People walked away from mortgages with little consequences and what you are doing is much less then that. It won't be worth it to them to sue you. I have seen many people refuse to take action until they run through all their $ and are going to be homeless which is just stupid. Why some people can't face reality is something that I can not understand. I have been in some tough spots financially and never did I just wallow instead of taking action. You don't have to love something to take action. Once you have an apartment your credit rating won't matter.
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Old 09-01-2016, 01:41 PM   #146
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As a few other posters alluded to - or flat-out said - I think you're too concerned about your lease. To be frank, if I were in your shoes I'd:
1) Find another place to live, NOW.
2) When you have a firm start date for the new apartment, move out of your old apartment one day after then (e.g., new apartment rent begins October 1, move out of current apartment October 2nd).
3) Make sure your rent on the current apartment is paid through your departure date, and let them keep your security deposit.

I leave it to you whether to give them 2 weeks notice, but I wouldn't.
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Old 09-01-2016, 01:46 PM   #147
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Thanks for asking and caring. There has been an incredible number of replies and views of my posting. It shows that early retirement is not all smiles and joy for many. Or maybe the word fear got someone's attention.
No, we pretty much pile on everybody like this!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Forced to Retire View Post
I pushed the property management company again about letting me out of my lease and they again said ...NO! I thought I had six months on my lease, but instead it is eight months. My rent is about $2500.00 a month so I will be paying about $20,000 to pay off the lease. If I were to move to a place like Richmond I could move into a nice one bedroom for about $800 a month, so could have saved $13,600 in the next eight month and forward. . . .

Until I can get away from my overpriced apartment, my life is on hold.
In your shoes, I don't think I would let it rest with that. If you move out now, the management company gets to keep your deposit and pretty much nothing else. Sure, they can put a black mark on your credit report, but that does nothing to help them. Your idea to contact a legal services attorney might be worth it. At worst, just offer prop management company a few thousand dollars to let you out of the lease right now (you'll have to deal with a real decisionmaker, not the person who takes checks at the desk). And, as you noted elsewhere, you'll be going somewhere and won't have a job to put on your rental applications, so you'll probably be a "cash up front" payer anyway-- in these circumstances, would a ding on your credit rating really hurt you as much as the cost of staying in this high COL area?
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Old 09-01-2016, 01:50 PM   #148
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Originally Posted by Forced to Retire View Post
Thanks for asking and caring. There has been an incredible number of replies and views of my posting. It shows that early retirement is not all smiles and joy for many. Or maybe the word fear got someone's attention.

An update on my situation.

I pushed the property management company again about letting me out of my lease and they again said ...NO! I thought I had six months on my lease, but instead it is eight months. My rent is about $2500.00 a month so I will be paying about $20,000 to pay off the lease. If I were to move to a place like Richmond I could move into a nice one bedroom for about $800 a month, so could have saved $13,600 in the next eight month and forward.

QUESTION: Do you think towns with an older population and less immigrants are more open to hiring people over 60 years old? (I have no proof but it seems like most of the part time jobs here go to immigrants or kids.

Until I can get away from my overpriced apartment, my life is on hold.
Time to find a legal aid lawyer.

Here are some quotes from the local legal services pamphlet: "The Colorado Legal Services provides legal services to seniors (60+) and to those under 60 who meet income and asset guidelines." ... "CLS provides legal advice and representation to eligible persons in civil matters. Priority is given to legal matters involving physical safety, prevention of homelessness, and financial stability (i.e., protection orders, foreclosure, landlord-tenant, access to public benefits, protection of exempt income and assets)."

This organization is supported by the local county and city governments and the local bar associations and includes Pro Bono work as needed.

I am sure all the counties and cities around Washington, DC have similar organizations. I found the local one when I went to a "Senior Law Day" meeting. There was lots of good information at the Senior Law Day meeting.
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Old 09-01-2016, 01:50 PM   #149
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Agree with the advice to rent a new place ASAP, move and let them keep security deposit. They have no real recourse and are, bluntly, being pricks.


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Old 09-01-2016, 01:52 PM   #150
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Do not worry to break the lease, in your circumstances it is necessary. It happens very frequently. If your landlord is not going to return your security deposit, you still save large amount by moving out to $800 rent. Yet you may try to threaten a lawsuit, if they keep your deposit while apartment is in good condition and nothing was damaged. Most likely they would not fight for the deposit, it will cost them more.
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Old 09-01-2016, 01:52 PM   #151
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Originally Posted by Forced to Retire View Post
...

I pushed the property management company again about letting me out of my lease and they again said ...NO! I thought I had six months on my lease, but instead it is eight months. My rent is about $2500.00 a month so I will be paying about $20,000 to pay off the lease. If I were to move to a place like Richmond I could move into a nice one bedroom for about $800 a month, so could have saved $13,600 in the next eight month and forward.

...

Until I can get away from my overpriced apartment, my life is on hold.
You can get away. Find another place, pack up the car, and drive off.

Unless there is something weird in the governing law, the nolo link given earlier indicates Virginia follows the general rule that the landlord is obligated to mitigate its damages and relet the apartment. If they relet quickly, they may be obligated to refund any deposit and if the unit and complex is attractive, they most likely are going to relet well before 8 months.
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Old 09-01-2016, 01:54 PM   #152
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I have been holding back mentioning this because I don't want to imply the OP hasn't read his lease. But sometimes you can lose sight of details. To wit:

I spent 30 yrs living in apartments in several states. All but one of them required 1 year leases. They all very clearly said I was on the hook for 1 yr, X-thousands of dollars, and that paying 1/12th per month was an acceptable way to pay it off.

They also all said either party, lessee or lessor, could end the lease for any reason with, usually, 30 days written notice. New York I think had a 60 day clause. That part was never as boldly stated nor easily readable as the 1-Year for $7200 bucks at $600 a month part. All of these were standard mega-development corp apartment complexes.

The office manager isn't going to call this to your attention. They just want your money and be able to report to HQ 90% full units. If you haven't yet, tease through the lease and see if there is something like a 30 or 60 day clause that says YOU can leave with written notice and that the owners can oust you for any reason with written notice.

Just a thought
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Old 09-01-2016, 02:06 PM   #153
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I have been holding back mentioning this because I don't want to imply the OP hasn't read his lease. But sometimes you can lose sight of details. To wit:

I spent 30 yrs living in apartments in several states. All but one of them required 1 year leases. They all very clearly said I was on the hook for 1 yr, X-thousands of dollars, and that paying 1/12th per month was an acceptable way to pay it off.

They also all said either party, lessee or lessor, could end the lease for any reason with, usually, 30 days written notice. New York I think had a 60 day clause. That part was never as boldly stated nor easily readable as the 1-Year for $7200 bucks at $600 a month part. All of these were standard mega-development corp apartment complexes.

The office manager isn't going to call this to your attention. They just want your money and be able to report to HQ 90% full units. If you haven't yet, tease through the lease and see if there is something like a 30 or 60 day clause that says YOU can leave with written notice and that the owners can oust you for any reason with written notice.

Just a thought
In a similar vain once you have read your contract, review rights on tenants on your states website... every state has protections for renters and most landlords don't even know them and often write contracts that aren't even enforceable. I've never not had an out clause, mine was 60 days notice plus 1 month... which 3 months of rent was better than 8.
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Old 09-01-2016, 02:18 PM   #154
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I think that he is still in denial.

Forced: Sign a lease for a new $800/month place move your stuff, write the current place a letter sent certified mail (<$5) and drop off the key. Don't pay any more of your valuable capital on the old place.

Why is this so hard? You mentioned first that you had no family and no attachment to the expensive area, but in a later post you mention family and friends in the area that would be convenient from Richmond.

Talk to one of the free legal service clinics in your area and have them explain to you the worse case scenario if you break your lease early.

Your attachment to the current lease appears irrational.

I hate to keep harping on this and throwing the smelly fish on the table, but it is the #1 thing you can do to help yourself.
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Old 09-01-2016, 02:26 PM   #155
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Your situation defies my understanding. How long was your lease? I have never had one for longer than 12 months. You say you have been out of work for 9 months and you no longer receive unemployment payments. Are you saying that 4 months ago with 1 month left on a typical 6 month unemployment run, that you renewed your lease for another year? Are you sure you aren't trolling us?


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Old 09-01-2016, 02:27 PM   #156
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Of course if you ask the management company about getting out of the lease, they will say NO! It's in their interest for you to stay & pay. But as other have noted, if you vacate, the landlord cannot simply sue & recover what's owed on the lease; they have to try to mitigate damages by renting to someone else, so they will have to do that when you leave. Seems to me the worst case scenario if they sue is that you'd be liable for another month's rent, maybe two -- if they sue at all. For reassurance, see if you can talk to Legal Aid, but every day you stay there is costing you money that will add up fast, so your focus should be on getting out ASAP. Don't let yourself be paralyzed by fear & anxiety about the unknown. You didn't get into this situation by choice, but how you react to it IS your choice.

Easy to give advice from afar, I know. Most people in your shoes would feel anxious too. But sometimes you just gotta leap.
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Old 09-01-2016, 02:31 PM   #157
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No your life in not on hold until your lease expires, in fact you are losing options every month that you continue to pay that rent, options you will not easily get back. Money=Options. As long as they say No and you continue to pay the rent, why the H#$l would they give any other answer.

Don't throw down with them right now, go a find an apartment for less money and move there ASAP. Look through your lease if you can't find it get a copy from management follow any lease breaking options to the letter and you might even get your deposit back. I remember the first lease my daughter signed on her own out of college had a loss of employment clause allowing you to vacate the lease. Read your lease and call for some free legal help, it will be the easiest 20K you have ever made.
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Old 09-01-2016, 02:41 PM   #158
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I am with others to just pack up and leave....

BUT, I would not move out on the 1st day of the month... they can claim that month for sure even if they do rent it out again (that is debateable as I have seen it both ways on the TV judge shows)... but, there is no way they will get 8 months... the most I have seen a judge give is 3 months... and that was a roommate situation where they live in the same place....

I would also be less concerned about my credit rating if it is going to cost me $15K.... you might be able to put something in your file about becoming unemployed etc. etc...
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Old 09-01-2016, 02:59 PM   #159
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Yep, serve notice, then leave. They can sue you, but they'd be better off just keeping your deposit and re-renting. VA law prohibits them from collecting rent from you at the time they re-let the apartment, and in your shoes I'd take my chances. Even if you pay a month or two in rent to terminate, that's still money in your pocket.

You're going to end up spending almost 7% of your available assets just renting that place for 8 months. That's not a good way to start your retirement. If you leave, get sued and pay two additional months rent plus the loss of deposit, and rent an $800 place, you have only spent 4.5%. If the best case happens and they seek no damages or rent right away, your spend is down to 3% (deposit plus new rent).

This is a no-brainer. You're talking big bucks relative to your situation. Take action.
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Old 09-01-2016, 03:20 PM   #160
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As the others have suggested I think your best option is to find a cheaper place to live like Richmond, rent the apartment there, and then move. Only then let the management in Fairfax know. Yes it may ding your credit score for a while but by the time that matters you'll have a full year in the new place reestablishing good credit.

Frankly I'd make the move to a different state like MD or WV to make it harder for them to sue you. It isn't likely they'll bother but why make it easy? Both states have low COL places that are within an hour or two of DC if that is important to you.
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