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Where to retire
Old 04-18-2015, 08:15 AM   #1
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Where to retire

Visited relatives in Sarasota recently beautiful, nice weather but pretty crowded. (The mrs inherited with her sisters a nice 2 bedroom townhouse in a gated community) The traffic was pretty terrible too (it was Easter so maybe that was some of it) it got my to thinking about where to retire?

My wish list...
1) I really don't want too much congestion. But 30 min to Home Depot max.
2) We've had it with New England winters - even here in southern Pennsylvania gloomy gray skies for 3 months and 2 degrees - no thank you.
3) single story living
4) love to fish fresh or salt
5) love growing lettuce, tomatoes etc. but I could do it in pots I'm easy
6) hills NC - cool nights? A touch of winter?
7) buy out the relatives and do the summer/winter migration?

So what are/were your priorities? Any suggestions as to where?
As I write this the mrs and I are on our deck enjoying an warm spring morning .. We both are outside when We can be.





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Old 04-18-2015, 08:21 AM   #2
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Isn't it very crowded pretty much everywhere that the weather is beautiful year round?
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Old 04-18-2015, 08:27 AM   #3
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I love the 'max 30 minutes to Home Depot'. Definitely this is on my list!
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Old 04-18-2015, 08:38 AM   #4
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Isn't it very crowded pretty much everywhere that the weather is beautiful year round?
+1 I think that's the hard reality. One thing DW and I do to avoid the "crowds" at our favorite bike path is get there early in the morning.
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Old 04-18-2015, 08:39 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by rayinpenn View Post
Visited relatives in Sarasota recently beautiful, nice weather but pretty crowded. The traffic was pretty terrible too (it was Easter so maybe that was some of it) it got my to thinking about where to retire?

My wish list...
1) I really don't want too much congestion. But 30 min to Home Depot max.
2) We've had it with New England winters - even here in southern Pennsylvania gloomy gray skies for 3 months and 2 degrees - no thank you.
3) single story living
4) love to fish fresh or salt
5) love growing lettuce, tomatoes etc. but I could do it in pots I'm easy
6) hills NC - cool nights? A touch of winter?

So what are/were your priorities? Any suggestions as to where?
As I write this the mrs and I are on our deck enjoying an warm spring morning .. We both are outside when We can be.





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I say Carlsbad, CA despite its high cost of housing. Traffic within the city is not bad but traveling to LA or San Diego could be congested during the commute hours. The weather is normally sunny, warm, cool at nights. The beaches along the Southern Cal coast are beautiful. Don't know much about fishing in that area but deep sea fishing should be available. There are some downsides: drought, high cost of housing, traffic (to the big cities, e.g., LA, San Diego), high taxes.

One more thing that I would consider is health care. I heard that cities in Orange County, e.g., San Clemente, San Juan Capistrano, Irvine have better health care than those in the San Diego county. These coastal cities in Orange County are worth considering also.
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Old 04-18-2015, 08:52 AM   #6
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Don't come to NC. It is terrible here.
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Old 04-18-2015, 08:53 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by rayinpenn View Post
Visited relatives in Sarasota recently beautiful, nice weather but pretty crowded. (The mrs inherited with her sisters a nice 2 bedroom townhouse in a gated community) The traffic was pretty terrible too (it was Easter so maybe that was some of it) it got my to thinking about where to retire?

My wish list...
1) I really don't want too much congestion. But 30 min to Home Depot max.
2) We've had it with New England winters - even here in southern Pennsylvania gloomy gray skies for 3 months and 2 degrees - no thank you.
3) single story living
4) love to fish fresh or salt
5) love growing lettuce, tomatoes etc. but I could do it in pots I'm easy
6) hills NC - cool nights? A touch of winter?
7) buy out the relatives and do the summer/winter migration?

So what are/were your priorities? Any suggestions as to where?
As I write this the mrs and I are on our deck enjoying an warm spring morning .. We both are outside when We can be.


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Should no state tax be on the list?
We plan to do extensive travel in our retirement, so we may actually rent for a while after retirement.
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Old 04-18-2015, 08:56 AM   #8
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Don't come to NC. It is terrible here.
+1
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Old 04-18-2015, 09:04 AM   #9
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Don't come to NC. It is terrible here.
Are you just kidding or is it really terrible? If it is, why? Which part of NC?
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Old 04-18-2015, 09:08 AM   #10
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Should no state tax be on the list?
We plan to do extensive travel in our retirement, so we may actually rent for a while after retirement.
This has been posted in this forum before:

State-by-State Guide to Taxes on Retirees-Kiplinger

Many states have state income taxes but some states don't tax retirement income such as IRA and 401K withdrawals and SS. PA is an example of this.
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Old 04-18-2015, 09:55 AM   #11
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This has been posted in this forum before:

State-by-State Guide to Taxes on Retirees-Kiplinger

Many states have state income taxes but some states don't tax retirement income such as IRA and 401K withdrawals and SS. PA is an example of this.
Gee, I am living in one of those least tax-friendly states for retirees. Going to CA is not any better, however.
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Old 04-18-2015, 10:29 AM   #12
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Do you speak Spanish? There are some very nice places South of the Border. The infrastructure may not be what we are used to, but living in a Honduran condo with a balcony that overlooks the Ocean does sound awesome. Especially if you just do it part of the year.
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Old 04-18-2015, 10:34 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by rayinpenn View Post
Visited relatives in Sarasota recently beautiful, nice weather but pretty crowded. (The mrs inherited with her sisters a nice 2 bedroom townhouse in a gated community) The traffic was pretty terrible too (it was Easter so maybe that was some of it) it got my to thinking about where to retire?

My wish list...
1) I really don't want too much congestion. But 30 min to Home Depot max. It's not very congested here in suburban New Orleans, at all. I do avoid driving much from 4-5 PM although it really isn't very bad. Five minutes to either Home Depot or Lowe's from my house.
2) We've had it with New England winters - even here in southern Pennsylvania gloomy gray skies for 3 months and 2 degrees - no thank you. Winter is a welcome respite from summertime here. We almost never have snow or ice.
3) single story living Most houses in my suburb (including mine) are single story.
4) love to fish fresh or salt You could do both, here. Louisiana prides itself on being the "Sportsman's Paradise", and fishing is the main sport here. Plus, we have a thriving commercial fishing industry.
5) love growing lettuce, tomatoes etc. but I could do it in pots I'm easy Everything grows like crazy here due to the subtropical climate and rainfall. Local Creole tomatoes are some of the best I have ever tasted.
6) hills NC - cool nights? A touch of winter? It is cool here from about December to March and we welcome it. Some years I even turn on the central heat.
7) buy out the relatives and do the summer/winter migration? I can't understand why anybody would be a snowbird, although many love it. Twice the cost, three times the hassle. To me it is much nicer to make up my mind about where I want to live, and then settle in. Each to his own.

So what are/were your priorities? Any suggestions as to where?
As I write this the mrs and I are on our deck enjoying an warm spring morning .. We both are outside when We can be.
Oh! You are making me feel great about our current location here in New Orleans. I added my comments in blue within the quote of your post, above.

My priorities would certainly include crime, which to me is the biggest disadvantage of living in New Orleans. If it gets any worse, we still might move away even though we love this area. Hurricanes are a disadvantage here too, but one I have begrudgingly decided I can bear. Insurance is high here, which kind of absorbs all the savings from our outstandingly low property taxes.

I think anyplace might have seemed crowded over Easter. Here, it always seems more crowded over Mardi Gras or when a Saints game is going on (due to all the football parties that people have here).
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Old 04-18-2015, 10:49 AM   #14
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Stay out of Texas. There are already too many New Englander's here.
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Old 04-18-2015, 10:52 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by rayinpenn View Post
Visited relatives in Sarasota recently beautiful, nice weather but pretty crowded. (The mrs inherited with her sisters a nice 2 bedroom townhouse in a gated community) The traffic was pretty terrible too (it was Easter so maybe that was some of it) it got my to thinking about where to retire?

My wish list...
1) I really don't want too much congestion. But 30 min to Home Depot max.
2) We've had it with New England winters - even here in southern Pennsylvania gloomy gray skies for 3 months and 2 degrees - no thank you.
3) single story living
4) love to fish fresh or salt
5) love growing lettuce, tomatoes etc. but I could do it in pots I'm easy
6) hills NC - cool nights? A touch of winter?
7) buy out the relatives and do the summer/winter migration?

So what are/were your priorities? Any suggestions as to where?
As I write this the mrs and I are on our deck enjoying an warm spring morning .. We both are outside when We can be.
I've been in the Ft. Lauderdale area for 16 years and started looking for a place to finish raising my kids. I agree on Sarasota - in addition to the traffic near the beach, it's not cheap (unless you're 5+ miles inland) and I didn't find it kid-friendly.

I settled on Northwest Florida (AKA - Gulf Coast/Panhandle/Redneck Riviera), specifically the area between Panama City Beach and Destin.

Great salt water fishing, plenty to catch in the huge bays just inland and many fresh water lakes within 100 miles. Housing prices and styles range from stupidly expensive on the beach to very affordable as you move inland just a few miles.

Shopping and services including health care are adequate, but don't have the range of choices I've been accustomed to.

Once you're 5-10 miles north of the beach, you're in the rural South, and that won't be to everyone's liking. Fine for me, though.

The major downside I found is the summers are crazy with tourists. Traffic moves slowly on the weekends and beach parking can be difficult. Both are manageable if you plan ahead though.

Plus - no state income tax
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Old 04-18-2015, 10:54 AM   #16
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Are you just kidding or is it really terrible? If it is, why? Which part of NC?
There's a tradition I've noticed on this site to declare where you live terrible when you don't want to be overrun by newbies.

Of course it is not terrible. We get a little winter, a lot of summer, and tons of glorious in between.

People are a mix of american cultures in many respects. State vacillates the line politically through the years, etc. Nothing too extreme.

Mountains, coast, cities in between.

This is my adopted state. My one gripe IS the migration. (Yeah, and I'm one of them, but I was here first!) Central NC has been on a rocketship of growth since 1993 Money Mag declared us #1 place to live. In just the past year, my commute has deteriorated by 20% due to growing traffic congestion. Thank goodness I'm in OMY and ER is soon. I plan to retire here, but may have to amend plans (or at least move within the state) if this incredible crush of growth continues.

OP mentioned "NC hills". That's a lot of territory, but there are some gems that I'm considering to slow down, yet still not be too far away from services such as health care. I am afraid that Asheville is being lost to the influx, however. Might be a lost cause of congestion and cost at the rate it is going.
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Old 04-18-2015, 11:10 AM   #17
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Stay out of Texas. There are already too many here.

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Old 04-18-2015, 11:13 AM   #18
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I'd encourage you to take a look at the Santa Rosa, CA, area, about 60 miles north of San Fran. It meets all your priorities, but I would especially mention its proximity to great fishing area - lakes, rivers, and just 30 miles from the Bodega Bay / Jenner coast. Oh, and Santa Rosa has three Home Depots within 25 miles. I, also a former PA guy, love it here.
Traffic can become congested, but typically only during commuting hours on the main thoroughfares (US 101), which a retired person can avoid!
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Old 04-18-2015, 01:07 PM   #19
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OMY?
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Old 04-18-2015, 01:49 PM   #20
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Look at central Florida for less traffic. Leesburg, Mt. Dora,Eustis, Tavares or The Villages. Chain of lakes for boating fishing. Not much in the way of hills in Florida.
For permanent living vs snobird, try a few weeks in the summer before taking the big step of permanent relocation.
We did the snowbird 6 and 6 for 24 years, but decided against year round becuase we're not happy with the heat, and would miss the changing seasons.
A neighbor just bought a year round home in Hot Springs Village Arkansas. Might be worth a look.
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