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Moving?
Old 10-01-2010, 01:52 PM   #1
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Moving?

I've posted before about my emotional attachment to my house. I guess I am severly risk adverse as well, prefering to stay put and entrenched in familiar routines and avoid big decisions.

Anyways, I think I need to move. I don't really want to. So I thought I'd post to get some feedback.

I live 35 miles away from work and the commute takes about 1 to 1.5 hours each way.

This wasn't bad for the past 4 years as my wife was home to watch DD. Wife is now moved out and working full time. DD goes to school 3 times a week and I'm the responsible parent trying to be home/arrange someone to be home at 2PM when school lets out.

Anyways, if I sell my house and move close to work a lot of my problems would be solved.

Pros:
save 2 hours commuting each day
save associated car expenses (maint, gas, insurance, wear and tear)
Can take advantage of base facilities (gym, commissary, free movies, bowling, marina)
can take advantage of daycare and school care program
may be cheaper?
Closer to town/city so more things to do, more convienent.
no lawn work, snow blowing, etc (if I rent)

Cons:
real estate market is down so can't sell too high- may break even?
change in DDs school
change in school districts (need to research new school districts)
won't live next to my brother anymore
possible noisy apt/condo?
state sales tax? I alreay pay state income tax

Looks like I can get a nice 2 bedroom place for $1K to $1300 a month (some with heat). Current mortgage is $1350. So, I could save some cash moving and renting.

I think I could sell my place for a slight profit, or even break even. Not sure how long it would take to get out of this real estate funk.

I guess I could rent my house, but unsure if I have the time for that. Also, would not want my place ruined by bad tenents.

I've lived at my house since 1993 and have pretty much remodeled the whole place a little bit at a time. Owe $156K, tax value around $210K, fair market may be $190-$200K judging by other local sales. Stil needs some work, so I'd have to discount it a bit, or do the work.

Pretty sure I could just sell it and break even, move and have no debts.
Would you do it? From a quality of life standpoint it seems a no brainer, if I could find a good school for my DD (I'd have to research special ed in the surrounding towns and pick one with a good autism program).
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Old 10-01-2010, 01:57 PM   #2
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From a quality of life standpoint it seems a no brainer, if I could find a good school for my DD (I'd have to research special ed in the surrounding towns and pick one with a good autism program).
I think you've already answered your own question.

Houses come and houses go. Time, especially time for your daughter's needs, only comes by once. Sell, move, and use the time you earn to do what you want to do - care for your daughter.
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Old 10-01-2010, 02:05 PM   #3
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Same as Wahoo.... a no brainer to me....

I had a head hunter call the other day... but the job was in the Galleria... it would be a lot longer commute in time and frustration for me... so I said I would need to double my salary for me to go there... right now, time is more important to me than the money... and you are not even getting any more money with your commute...
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Old 10-01-2010, 02:10 PM   #4
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The commuting thing is reason enough. Two to three hours a day out of your life is not reasonable -- no one should have to do that.
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Old 10-01-2010, 02:19 PM   #5
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The commuting thing is reason enough. Two to three hours a day out of your life is not reasonable -- no one should have to do that.
I agree with Al.

Check this out. Commuting stress effects can be greater than that of a fighter pilot.
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Old 10-01-2010, 02:27 PM   #6
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From a quality of life standpoint it seems a no brainer, if I could find a good school for my DD (I'd have to research special ed in the surrounding towns and pick one with a good autism program).

I don't know the severity of your daughters autism and i'm no expert but my understanding is that kids with autism need a routine. They need structure and consistency. Would moving to a new home, with a new school, new teachers, new friends cause excessive emotional trauma. The answer to that question would determine the moving question IMO.
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Old 10-01-2010, 02:51 PM   #7
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Yes, I am concerned about making too many changes at once to our routine. I guess I'd like move some time in summer of next year, so she would have time to get used to the new house. Then start a new school year so there would be no break or sudden change. The child care at work would remain constant.

DD seems to handle big changes like that well. She loves her current school and its teachers and her aide.

I asked my boss if I could work from home on 2 days a week (her school days), but he doesn't seem too excited about "telework." Even tho the feds are pushing for increased teleworking it just hasn't trickled down to us worker bees.
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Old 10-01-2010, 03:06 PM   #8
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Rich, interesting article.... Divorce in progress, check. Long commute, check. Caring for ill child, check.
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Old 10-01-2010, 03:29 PM   #9
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Rich, interesting article.... Divorce in progress, check. Long commute, check. Caring for ill child, check.
Sorry to hear.

But if you recognize your current susceptibilities you can act prospectively: pace yourself, avoid other controllable excesses; keep up with exercise, good diet; regular time with friends; moderation with alcohol; etc. etc. And if course, counselling if the need should arise.

Hang in there.
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Old 10-01-2010, 03:41 PM   #10
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Bimmerbill, sorry to hear about your situation.

From your post it sounds like living closer to your work, so that you have more time for your DD, will improve your life (and that of your DD) immensely.

If the real estate market is very slow there as it is here, you may find that you have to endure a lot of work, expenditures, and effort, in order to sell. For example, my realtor here very plainly told me that with so many houses to choose from, buyers here simply do not seem interested in even looking at a house that needs repairs or updating. As a result there may be a lot of work and disruption of a seller's routine while preparing the house for sale. I am going through this now, but can't even imagine doing it while handling responsibilities like yours.

Still, if you can manage to sell it would be worth it IMO. You could say goodbye to that killer commute, and spend more time with your DD.

Can you and your DD handle the upheaval due to divorce, AND the upheaval due to moving, all at once like this? Maybe it would be best to wait for a year or two and move then. (?) I don't really have a feel for this but you probably have a hunch one way or another.
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Old 10-01-2010, 05:31 PM   #11
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So sorry to hear about your divorce but you need to do what is best for you and your daughter . I also get attached to my houses . Once when I was in some one's house that had drawings of all their past houses and I really liked that idea . Sure houses are just wood & bricks but they contain so many memories . So move on but take a picture of this house with you .
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Old 10-01-2010, 05:40 PM   #12
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Rich, interesting article.... Divorce in progress, check. Long commute, check. Caring for ill child, check.
Wow. All I can add is how lucky your daughter is to have you. Hang in there.
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Old 10-01-2010, 08:51 PM   #13
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I can only share my experience. My wife died about 8 years ago and my son was 10 at the time. I work about 45min to 1 hour from work depending on traffic.

I thought about moving closer to work but friends and articles I read told me to avoid any major move the first year that I was on my own. This was some of the best advise that I have received.

I had to take care of my 10 year old son who had/has chronic stomach problems who was missing 3-4 months of school each year.

Things worked out and my boss let me work from home for a long period of time. Sometimes months on end.

My son now attends high school via the internet so he can have a flexible schedule around his stomach ills. I have since semi retired and go into the office 4 mornings a week.

Only you can decide what is best for you and your daughter. The correct answer will come to you.

Good Luck
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Old 10-02-2010, 08:52 AM   #14
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Well, my wife moved out 1 year ago and my daughter handled it fine. Wife just moved this past week, so will see how DD does with a new house for mommy. I think she is way more flexible than I am! Its odd, but the small changes seem to bother her more than the huge ones.

Hopefully my boss will help me out for a while. Otherwise I will need to hire someone I really trust to meet my DD when the bus drops her off, unlock my house, and take care of her for 4 hours or so.

I bought my house from my family after my grandfather died. He built it in the late 70s so it was full of shag and bright orange counter tops! I don't think family would be upset if I had to sell it, tho I sense some push back from my mom.

Its really a nice little ranch (1400 sq ft) with a great backyard. I did a new roof, siding, windows, heating system, flooring, appliances, etc, over the years.

I guess I'd have to talk to a Realtor to see if I could just discount the price for quick sale, or have to fix some stuff up. Its mostly cosmetic and landscape work (a lot of little unfinished projects). SILs mother is a realtor in town so maybe I'll talk to her.

Moving next summer may be best so DD can start kindergarten at the beginning of the school year.
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Old 10-02-2010, 08:54 AM   #15
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Cons:
real estate market is down so can't sell too high- may break even?
This is a big hangup for a lot of people, but it shouldn't be. Yes you will get less for your house than you might have years ago, but whatever you buy will be at a depressed cost too. If you wait until your current house commands a better price (which could take years), your new house will have gone up too. Pretty much a wash in any market, so scratch that one off your list.

The commute would do it for me too, but YMMV.

Best of luck...
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Old 10-02-2010, 01:40 PM   #16
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Trying to think out of the box for you. Real estate is not my strong suit.
How about a house swap? you swap yours for one closer to work/supports.
Sorta like a 1031 exchange.
Someone is probably itching to move farther away from work.
I might approach my bank and see if they had properties that might be able to be assumed in exchange for yours.
Hopefully the increased quality time with dd would counteract the stresses of the move.
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Old 10-02-2010, 07:50 PM   #17
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Yes, I thought of a house swap and was going to post to Craigslist. Not sure if realtors actually broker that sort of stuff and have lists.

Not sure I'm in a position to buy if I sell. Not sure I want to either. After 17 years of lawn work, home maintenance and snow blowing, I may want to rent!
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