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Old 10-18-2010, 07:59 PM   #21
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The records for the state of North Dakota are -60 for a low and +120 for the high. The coldest I've ever seen is -45. Wind chills approaching -100 happen sometimes. In the winter of 1978 it went below zero the day after Thanksgiving and didn't go above again for about 90 days.
I served with an officer who joined the Navy expressly to get out of Minot... as far as he was concerned, everything after that was bonus. He claimed that the state tree was the telephone pole and his town motto was "Why not Minot?"

When we used to snivel about how cold it was making submarine patrols out of Holy Loch, Scotland and up into the North Atlantic, he just laughed.
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Old 10-18-2010, 08:30 PM   #22
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Before you voluntarily render yourself homeless, perhaps it'd be more financially conservative to rent in that larger town for a few months-- you might find out that it's no better than the frying pan town you're in now. Or you might find other long-term issues there (which weren't apparent on your short visits) that make boredom seem attractive.


Mortgage companies used to use the ratios of 28% of net income for housing costs and 36% of income for total debt.

Whatever you decide to spend on housing, give yourself some room for rent increases-- and for the occasional moving expenses caused by unsympathetic landlords.
I think that's PITI only, so he should subtract out utilities, etc.
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Old 10-18-2010, 10:41 PM   #23
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I would just sell the house, buy a motorhome, then drive down to NM during the winter.

This state has a sweet deal that allows a non-resident to buy an annual camping for $225. Then, they charge an additional $4/day for each of the electric and sewer hookups at the state campgrounds.

In the summer, I would just play vagabond across the entire country, including driving back to ND to visit relatives and friends.
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Old 10-19-2010, 08:15 AM   #24
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I served with an officer who joined the Navy expressly to get out of Minot... as far as he was concerned, everything after that was bonus. He claimed that the state tree was the telephone pole and his town motto was "Why not Minot?"

When we used to snivel about how cold it was making submarine patrols out of Holy Loch, Scotland and up into the North Atlantic, he just laughed.
The town motto is indeed "why not Minot" and the state bird is the Mosquito.
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Old 10-19-2010, 08:29 AM   #25
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Among the reasons I decided to end my military career after 8 years was the strong possibility my next assignment would have been to Minot AFB. I'd spent some time TDY at both Glasgow, MT, and Rapid City, SD and that gave me a taste of what winters were like in that part of the US. The thought of moving my family there for 3-4 years wasn't something I wanted us to experience.
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Old 10-19-2010, 09:57 AM   #26
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I agree with NoDak that moving from where he is to Mandan will have a much better climate. Mandan/Bismark area has the Missouri river which gives some recreational opportunities. If one were to stay in NoDak it is a nice area.

And, if he wants to bug out for the south for part of the winter it is much easier to leave an apartment than it is to leave a home.

Sell.
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Old 10-19-2010, 01:05 PM   #27
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The thought of moving my family there for 3-4 years wasn't something I wanted us to experience.
I like the way you phrased that-- I notice there's no mention of them being willing or interested, let alone thinking, of moving there with you.

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Old 10-19-2010, 01:50 PM   #28
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The average family makes about 50k so they should not spend more than 32% on all housing costs. The percent changes a little with income but that gives you a ballpark number. Nodak I found this very helpful be sure to click on the Categories
Spending Plan Online Calculator
Neat link. I've often thought there is no shortage of online tools to help you track your spending, but a real shortage on the issue of how much you "should" spend. This is the first I've seen that goes to that question.

I assume the ratios are for the "average family" from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (same as Lars post). The BLS has much more detailed data.

I'd like to see a site that asks for a little demographic information (single, 28, female, renting, plans to spend $2,000 per month after taxes and saving) then provides a budget that represents the average spending of other people just like you. The user can override any item with her actual plan, and all the remaining defaults will adjust automatically.
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Old 10-19-2010, 02:34 PM   #29
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The closest place I've got to that kind of winter is Fargo, by watching the movie... Brrr..
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Old 10-19-2010, 04:41 PM   #30
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Neat link. I've often thought there is no shortage of online tools to help you track your spending, but a real shortage on the issue of how much you "should" spend. This is the first I've seen that goes to that question.

I assume the ratios are for the "average family" from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (same as Lars post). The BLS has much more detailed data.

I'd like to see a site that asks for a little demographic information (single, 28, female, renting, plans to spend $2,000 per month after taxes and saving) then provides a budget that represents the average spending of other people just like you. The user can override any item with her actual plan, and all the remaining defaults will adjust automatically.
Here is another one

Real Debt Help - Get out of debt with Dave Ramsey's Total Money Makeover Plan - daveramsey.com
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Old 10-19-2010, 06:50 PM   #31
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And, if he wants to bug out for the south for part of the winter it is much easier to leave an apartment than it is to leave a home.

Sell.
That's a good point that I hadn't thought of. Spending some winter time in the southwest would be fun. Leaving a house unoccupied in ND in the winter is risky, one has to get someone else to keep an eye on the place. If the heat goes out and pipes freeze severe damage can happen in a matter of hours.
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Old 10-19-2010, 06:57 PM   #32
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The average family makes about 50k so they should not spend more than 32% on all housing costs. The percent changes a little with income but that gives you a ballpark number. Nodak I found this very helpful be sure to click on the Categories
Spending Plan Online Calculator
Thanks for the link, I just got around to checking it out. Feel much better about the rent price now.
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Old 10-19-2010, 07:05 PM   #33
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I don't have much to add that hasn't been said, Nodak, but I want to congratulate you for being proactive and finding a solution to your remote, cold, comparatively lonely and expensive location, despite it being your home for nearly all of your life.

Congrats on contemplating the big leap to rent in the new town. It will hopefully be a great adventure and give you lots of opportunities to socialize, catch up with family, and for goodness sakes get the heck out of there when it is cold!
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Old 10-19-2010, 07:20 PM   #34
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I'm with everyone else here Nodak, go be with your family and if renting becomes a problem then you can buy in the new town.

Have fun!

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Old 10-19-2010, 07:58 PM   #35
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Many thanks to all of you for your input. This is something I've been thinking about for a long time and today decided to go for it, I put a deposit on the apartment. Now I've got lots of work to do on the logistics.
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Old 10-19-2010, 09:20 PM   #36
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The closest place I've got to that kind of winter is Fargo, by watching the movie... Brrr..
Those lonely foggy road scenes were filmed about 10 miles from my house. I've driven the road often; it gives you a good idea of how empty this area is.
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Old 10-20-2010, 02:33 PM   #37
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Those lonely foggy road scenes were filmed about 10 miles from my house. I've driven the road often; it gives you a good idea of how empty this area is.
What the movie didn't communicate is how the winter wind sucks the life right out of you.
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Old 10-20-2010, 07:21 PM   #38
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Kudos on making the leap, Nodak. You are most definitely doing the right thing. I was starting to get a little depressed with all this talk of cold, desolation, blustery winds, "Fargo", etc. as winter is right around the corner for us. I hate it when the alarm goes off and it is dark. Last year just about did me in as we had bitter cold and vast amounts of snow almost every day. When I retire I will either move south once and for all or at the very least be a snowbird.
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Old 10-20-2010, 07:33 PM   #39
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Kudos on making the leap, Nodak. You are most definitely doing the right thing. I was starting to get a little depressed with all this talk of cold, desolation, blustery winds, "Fargo", etc. as winter is right around the corner for us. I hate it when the alarm goes off and it is dark. Last year just about did me in as we had bitter cold and vast amounts of snow almost every day. When I retire I will either move south once and for all or at the very least be a snowbird.
One thing I will NEVER miss is getting up at 5:00am and driving the 18 miles to Cavalier Air Force Station in the dark and cold.
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