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Old 10-22-2009, 08:05 AM   #41
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Just curious , do you second home owners also travel to other places ? I would not mind having a second home near my daughter that I could use for a few months a year but this would take up my travel budget .
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Old 10-22-2009, 08:33 AM   #42
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Just curious , do you second home owners also travel to other places ? I would not mind having a second home near my daughter that I could use for a few months a year but this would take up my travel budget .
Ours is close enough to our primary home where I really consider it a "weekend home" rather than a "vacation home" where we might spend, say a week of vacation. So having owned it for one year, we still took a cruise, a trip to Hawaii, and a trip to Disneyworl, and a few weekends to local destinations by car.
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Old 10-22-2009, 09:15 AM   #43
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i'm starting to think that a pre-cut cabin package might be the ticket for my DW and I..... just need to brush up my carpentry skills and bribe some friends with beer and food to give us a hand.

A bit of research on the ol' internet suggests and a cabin package for a nice looking 1400 sq. ft cottage can be had for $60000 to $70000. Of course, this doesn't include foundation work, electrical, plumbing, drywall etc.
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Old 10-22-2009, 01:07 PM   #44
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We just bought a second home on the beach that is 4 miles away from our current residence. This is a very comfortable 1100 easily maintained beach house that we will retire to in 15 to 20 years. My parents will be living in it and taking care of it and paying for the Taxes during thier retirement. The whole family will get to enjoy this place through the years, because, when we visit our parents, we are also visiting the beach house. MY boat is on the Buoy right now, awaiting another cruise.

Never thought we would have a second home, but this was a once in a lifetime opportunity we couldn't let by. Now we know where we will be during our retirement, and it is pretty close to heaven.
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Old 10-22-2009, 01:33 PM   #45
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Just let a chance go by to pick up a place in Superior Az for $51,000 + 10% buyers premium and closing costs. It was an auction of some stinky assets from a failed bank. The auctioned off pool included a 4% $188k loan due to reset in a couple years - currently 3 payments in arrears at 33xx Jefferson PHX, a $199k 9.9% loan 2 payments in arrears at 54xx W Ajo Way in Ajo Az, and the foreclosed home in Superior at 1xx N. Saguaro. None of the places looked like anything we wanted to own, the Superior house came the closest. Still, a bunch of assets - roughly like buying $$387k worth of property loans for 15.5% of the amount due on them and getting the vacant house in Superior for free. Nasty looking places though and I didn't want to go through all the hassle of learning about the collection/foreclosure process out of our state... Had I known they were going to go so cheap..... Amazing that anyone loaned that much on them - almost makes a guy think there might have been some fraudulent appraisal going on...
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Old 10-22-2009, 02:41 PM   #46
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Ajo is an old Phelps Dodge Mining town, and I believe a Superfund site. I would think these kinds of things might get tricky, with contingent liabilities way out of proportion the the assets involved.

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Old 10-22-2009, 02:48 PM   #47
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Ajo is an old Phelps Dodge Mining town, and I believe a Superfund site. I would think these kinds of things might get tricky, with contingent liabilities way out of proportion the the assets involved.

Ha
I've been to Ajo - a real pretty plaza and the pit is easily visible on Google earth - Superior is also a mining town that is busily dying after the mining shut down - but darn good Mexican food and in a bowl of rock that reminded me of Sedona. Be that as it may, the lure of the cheap (it runs strong in him, yes it do) was tempered by the effort, risk, and a certain non-smiling and definitely not interested face. (but it was cheeeeeeep!)
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Old 10-22-2009, 03:09 PM   #48
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Why not just move there. I am kind of surprised by all the interest in 2nd homes, given that we have so many threads about LBYM and living simply.

There are things less simple and LBYM (unless one's means are huge) than a 2nd home, but not too many.

My neighborhood has a 98 walkscore. I really don't want to go very far away. I still own a country home in nice area, but I pay to keep it up and never look forward to going there.
Heh, heh. DW has an emotional attachment to this huge tract home we are currently in, in spite of two of three kids being launched, to opposite corners of the country. (One 600 miles away, another on the opposite coast.) The third one is in college now.

My Sekrit Planz (shhhh!) are to get a second home in a very walkable neighborhood, with an environment we both like, and gradually turn it into a primary home. The places I'm looking at have very high walk scores, are close to medical facilities, recreation, and entertainment.
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Old 10-22-2009, 03:21 PM   #49
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Heh, heh. DW has an emotional attachment to this huge tract home we are currently in, in spite of two of three kids being launched, to opposite corners of the country. (One 600 miles away, another on the opposite coast.) The third one is in college now.

My Sekrit Planz (shhhh!) are to get a second home in a very walkable neighborhood, with an environment we both like, and gradually turn it into a primary home. The places I'm looking at have very high walk scores, are close to medical facilities, recreation, and entertainment.
Those are my criteria too. If I were not committed to Seattle where my family is, I might consider NYC or LA beach communities. A really large city right on swimmable beaches is very hard to beat. And depending on where you live, LA is mostly walkable, though you may want to get in your car to grab entertainment 15 or 20 miles away. When I lived in Venice Beach other than driving to work I mostly walked.

I think your plan should work as your wife will likely be seduced by the much greater opportunities for pleasure in the type of neighborhood that you are heading toward.

IMO medical is important too. There is a big difference between any bunch of doctors, and a really great medical center. Also a big difference in having your doctors and hospitals 10 or 15 minutes away vs a long car trip and maybe overnight stays or exhausting trips home late at night.

I formerly lived where many of the permanent residents were retired, and when they got old or unlucky their lives tended to turn into long emotionally or physically painful trips to the city.

Ha
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Old 10-22-2009, 07:17 PM   #50
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I am kind of surprised by all the interest in 2nd homes, given that we have so many threads about LBYM and living simply.
Isn't that a contradiction? I don't know about others, but I will share my circumstances here.

After disassociating myself from the startups where I labored long and hard hours with little income to show for it, I started doing consulting just by myself and made good money again, starting in 2003. My wife had not walked off her Megacorp where she had 25 yrs of seniority. The market rise was wonderful in the 2003-2007 period, and I got into all the right stocks after realizing I should not expect my beloved tech stocks to ever reclaim their glory in 2000.

During the previous lean years, we were even more stingy than our nature, and now money kept rolling in. Other people would have "upgraded" their main residence, but we were fine with our 25-yr old house. Why would I want something bigger than 2800 sq.ft.? Remember that houses in Phoenix were and are a steal compared to California, and mine didn't cost me an arm and a leg.

My father died during this time after several years of bad health, and I was in emotional distress. Damn it, I will not be able to take it with me, and I've got some "pent-up" demands here. And my means were expanding.

So, I rebalanced my assets into intangible personal wealth (read travel), and another house to escape from the heat, also as a dream house for our eventual retirement. We were still LBYM when we bought it, but may be living right at our means now, I think.

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If you live in the right place for you, you won't need so much distraction.
How very true! In my case, as explained in a thread that I started, we both have extended family in town. As my screen name says it, I prefer to be in the Puget Sound, but we will stay here for a few more years. Eventually, when our parents are gone, and nieces and nephews and our own kids disperse throughout the country to pursue their jobs, I very likely will pack up and consolidate to one house where I will be happy staying year round. I will be sure to have room to park an RV too. A barn for it even.

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We do about 9 trips at 4-7 days each to our Az condo. A trip every month, except May/June and August. I pop in in July just to experience a little heat. I spend more time there for baseball spring training in Feb/march. After we fully retire, we'll lessen the number of trips and increase the lengths of stay.
Seems like you like to play snowbirds, perhaps due to roots in your state.

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Ajo is an old Phelps Dodge Mining town, and I believe a Superfund site. I would think these kinds of things might get tricky, with contingent liabilities way out of proportion the the assets involved.
I drive by Ajo every time we go to Puerto Penasco (Rocky Point), Mexico. Never wander off the highway that cuts right through town, so I do not know much about the place. It does not look like an interesting small town to me.
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Old 10-22-2009, 08:01 PM   #51
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Seems like you like to play snowbirds, perhaps due to roots in your state.

Yes- we have roots here in Illinois - MIL, BIL & SIL's, friends, DW's job. I can escape from my job for about a week and then I have to get back. DW can only escape 3-4 times a year so the other trips I go solo. But I like the snowbird deal. I love being outdoors as much as possible, and Az is far better than IL for outdoor activities 3 out of 4 seasons
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Old 10-23-2009, 07:57 AM   #52
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I don't think rejection of LBYM had anything to do with my choice to buy a second home -- I still spend less.

I had big income years in 2003 and 2004, and by 2007 I found the tiny beautiful mountain place I wanted, and paid cash for it. I had purchased my city house in 1992 and paid off the mortgage and my student loans by '97.

My country place costs $3700 a year in taxes and utilities and security system (because it's small). My total housing cost, both houses, is $10,000.

I expect to sell it when I am 80, about 35 years from now. In the meantime, I am planting fruit trees and bushes, and perhaps some black walnut trees. I have a huge garden too.

I think my city house might be the "waste", but I have intangible reasons to be there, and I don't think renting will fill the need. I have a big lovable German shepherd too. And I love my city neighborhood.

Moemg, I was self-employed for the last half of my career, and I got in the habit of wanting to take vacations in "up" years, when income was higher, about every three years. It was good practice for being retired. I don't have a line item in my budget for big travel. I just look at the numbers when I want to take a big vacation and see if it works. (Smaller vacations come out of the budget.)
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Old 10-23-2009, 08:33 AM   #53
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We bought a lake home five years ago as a vacation home and possible future retirement home once th kids are gone. We paid cash for it so we do own it free and clear as well. It is about 60 miles form our main home.

The lake house is in a small subdivision with good neighbors. About a third of the neighbors are full time and the rest part time. our neighbors on both sides are full time so they watch the place for us which is nice but we really do not worry about it. If something happens that is what the Ins is for.

We have averaged 80 to 120 days a year there. We go 2 to 3 weekends most of the year and then usually spend spring break there as well as part of the summer and Christmas break. DW and I also use it separately for her to have a girls weekend or me to have a guys fishing weekend a couple of times per year.

We do travel to other places also each year either camping in the TT or staying in FL for a couple of weeks at least in the fall.

ESR has really help the travel time and lake house time although we found ways to use it a lot before ESR also.

I do all the maintenance myself which for now I enjoy and that keeps the cost down. Taxes and Ins are much less than our primary residence and utilities certainly are. It however is not considered an investment. We do imagine that we will be able to sell it for more than we paid but the rate of return after expenses and deductions would not even match a tax deferred bond so it is a toy. The current tax appraisal is 50% higher than we purchased at and still lower than homes in the neighborhood have sold for this year so if we sold this year it might work out to be a half decent investment but that is not going to happen. Long term that % is very likely to drop.

We keep our boats there at the dock ready to go year around and that is worth a lot to us. It has also been a great place to spend family time and entertain upon occasion.

We keep it fully stocked with cloths and toys as well as some food in the freezer. This means all we have to take is perishable food and Walmart is only 4 miles away if we need anything else. We use a programmable thermostat and just turn the water off when we leave so its not to much work to open or close the place.

We did try renting it as a vacation rental one year before ESR as a fall back plan test and $ wise it was good in that it cleared $1000 a month for the year. We were still able to use it some as well since it was being rented as a vacation rental. The bad part is it limited our time there and was a real pain to put up and lockup everything we did not want renters to use. Also we are clean freaks so even though the company that managed it for us had it cleaned we would clean again before staying. We do not plan to rent it again unless finances require it which thankfully does not appear to be a likely case. Vacation rentals are a good option for the right property if it works into your schedules and plans well but I would not buy and plan to rent in order to afford the home. It would be much better to just rent someone else's when you want to go.

If you want to have a special place to get away from and know you can spend a good bit of time there and do not mind house work then a vacation home is probably for you as it was for us but it is definitely not for everybody. We have several friends that have second homes and after a couple of years got disappointed with them since they could not spend enough time to justify having them. We are able to spend the time there and still travel other places. If you cannot do that then most likely you will not like a second home. YMMV
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Old 10-23-2009, 08:00 PM   #54
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In case anyone missed it, we have had at least one thread on this subject of 2 homes in the past.

Would like to live in 2 places after retirement...

About having a secondary home, it might be because it provides us with activities that are not available at the first home, be it boating, swimming, hiking, etc..., while the main home allows close access to shopping, health care, etc... It might be difficult to find a place that satisfies both demands.

Regarding the cost of the second home, it is not just the ongoing cost of ownership, but one must also not forget the opportunity cost of the capital being tied down in the house value. My point is that people who use their 2nd home infrequently and think of it as an investment may be disappointed at the return.
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Old 10-23-2009, 08:10 PM   #55
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i'm starting to think that a pre-cut cabin package might be the ticket for my DW and I..... just need to brush up my carpentry skills and bribe some friends with beer and food to give us a hand.

A bit of research on the ol' internet suggests and a cabin package for a nice looking 1400 sq. ft cottage can be had for $60000 to $70000. Of course, this doesn't include foundation work, electrical, plumbing, drywall etc.
I have seen ads and even models of similarly log homes in my area. Yes, that price is just a come-on, until you read the fine print.

I often wonder if I might just be happy with one of the followings if I were a single geezer

Tumbleweed Tiny House Company

Of course, DW would not have any problem if we get one of the following unconventional Deltec houses, if we can get a lot with a view in the Puget Sound

Hurricane Resistant Prefab Round House, Prefab Green Dome Kits
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Old 10-24-2009, 12:49 AM   #56
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Paquette,

I am just trying to not have to live in a piano crate when I can't work anymore. 'Second house' ain't in the picture.
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Old 10-24-2009, 02:36 AM   #57
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Tried the two home thing 5 yrs. ago. Found it was way to much work for the pleasure derived. We find our travel trailer to be a much more workable option. Both financially and time consumption.
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Old 10-24-2009, 07:48 PM   #58
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Paquette,

I am just trying to not have to live in a piano crate when I can't work anymore. 'Second house' ain't in the picture.
I can't help myself. Just an upscale spendthrift, I suppose.

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Old 10-24-2009, 08:40 PM   #59
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That's a step down from the dust bowl days. Isn't it great to be a rich American?

Ha
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Old 10-27-2009, 10:33 AM   #60
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This thread got me curious about what the lake house is costing us. Soo, the costs below are costs for 1 year (from MS money):

advertising: 758
Association Dues: 1494
insurance: 1363
mortgage payment: 14461
management/cleaning: 2101
Property Taxes: 7734
rent: -33524
repairs: 2985
Utilities: 5246
Hotel Tax: 2004

Total: 4622

Surprized me a little that we took in over 30k in rents. Also can't remember 3k in "repairs" since the house is only a few years old. Oh, the geothermal died last winter ... never mind.
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