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Hello from Central North Carolina...
Old 05-12-2014, 06:05 PM   #1
Confused about dryer sheets
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Hello from Central North Carolina...

...I'm NCStarGuy, because I'm an amateur astronomer/full-time IT Geek.

I'll be 55 in a few weeks. In reasonable physical condition, with the exception of Rheumatoid Arthritis, which is pretty much under control.

I'm a widower. My 2nd wife was taken from me by colon cancer at the age of 45, way too young. After 6 years, I still miss her every day.

Been working pretty steadily since I was 14, with a couple of periods of unemployment about 12 years back...Pretty common for IT guys back then...

Hoping to retire in 2 to 5 years, providing things keep going along as they have been...

I think I have my financials figured out pretty well, not enough for a lavish retirement, but enough to wrest control of my life back from Corporate America. Spent a LOT of time in the Retire Early forum on Motley Fool back in the early 00's and learned a ton...

Planning to keep things fairly simple, with a little frugal World travel thrown in for excitement.

I'm currently in the process of trying to decide where I'll go when I chuck it all in. Raleigh is a nice place, but not sure if I want to stay 30 more years...

Hope to learn a lot here and to help out with things I know about...
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Old 05-12-2014, 06:17 PM   #2
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Welcome aboard, NCStarGuy. Loads of great information here and helpful forum members, is you have any questions.

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Old 05-12-2014, 07:26 PM   #3
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Hello, NCStarGuy. I was born & raised in Rockingham, NC, just down Hwy. 1 from you there in Raleigh. You may know where that is. Been living in Texas, Wisconsin (briefly) and now Louisiana most of my adult life, since age 23 when I left active duty Air Force. I get back to NC to visit family & friends now & then, in fact, will be visiting my mom in July. Welcome to the forum!
“Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future.”
-John F. Kennedy

“Hard work never killed anybody, but why take a chance?” - Edgar Bergen
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Old 05-12-2014, 07:50 PM   #4
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I'm always flummoxed when people say they want to come to NC to retire so they can save on taxes! 7% income tax, real estate taxes are not really cheap, and they take a good bit in those other 'gotchas'. So I'm also not sure 30 years in NC is in my future.
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Old 05-12-2014, 08:43 PM   #5
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NC state income tax rate drops to 5.8% in 2014. Plus the inheritance tax been eliminated. NC state sales tax is 4.75 plus any local sales taxes. A good average total sales tax figure is 6.75%. Some urban areas have 7%.

Gasoline taxes are high for the southeast. Property tax rates can be high in some urban areas. Outside the cities they can be low. I moved 15 miles outside a major city to an incorporated village and dropped my property tax rate by 35%, plus comparable home valuations are lower than in town. Utilities are moderate to low due to the climate and rates. Food prices are reasonable, and there are significant savings realizable at the many farmers markets during the growing season. Outdoor recreational opportunities abound and there are many low cost national and state parks and forests as well as Corps of Engineer locations. Many retirees are settling in eastern NC where the winters are mild and the cost of living, including housing, is low.

Healthcare seems to be good. Duke University and Wake Forest University have premier research and teaching medical centers with national reputations. If you need top level specialists they can be found in the state. The state university system is good and many locations have continuing education programs which may interest retirees. Raleigh and Charlotte are airline hubs and have international passenger flights. If you live in the central part of the state both the mountains and the seashore are typically no more than a 3 to 4 hours away by car.
Retired at 57. Now a happy camper!
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Old 05-13-2014, 06:05 AM   #6
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All good points NC57! Thanks for the news on the drop in the rate (I don't listen to the news at all...not enough good news).

One other point...good and bad... Duke sells me juice for 11 cents per kwh. The bad news is the nuke it comes from is not too many miles away, hehe.
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