Bruce From RI


Recycles dryer sheets
Feb 19, 2004
Hello to All!

I am Bruce from Rhode Island, an I am looking to retire early in 10 to 15 years. I am in my early 40's now. I agree with many people that I am looking to retire on a lot less than I spend now - not only will my mortage be gone in 13 years, my taxes will be lower, and my retirement savings will no longer need to be made; the biggest savings will be not feeding, clothing and housing 3 children. While I plan my retirement to meet the 80% goal many people advise I believe relistically that I can live on 50% or less with very little problem. One additional thing that I am thinking of doing is moving away from Rhode Island with its very high housing and tax burden to an area with a lower cost of living.

Bruce :D
Hi Bruce!

You mentioned the price of housing and property taxes in Rhode Island. I thought you might enjoy seeing some homes that are for sale right now near the town where I will be retiring in a few months:

Here's one for $29,500 - taxes are $254 per year:


This one was designed by Frank Loyd Wright and goes for $45,000 with taxes of $704 per year:


Here's one with the asking price of $50,000 and taxes of $829 per year:


This one goes for $33,500 - taxes are $436:


And here is an expensive one - $88,000 (taxes $1,020):


These are asking prices. Most of these homes have been on the market awhile and will go for less. A bit less than Rhode Island??
Wow! How far from Sioux City? Or Sioux Falls, S.D.? It can't be too rural, if there is a Frank lloyd Wright house there. How far from the Missouri River? About ten years ago I drove across I90, then went south I think at Sioux Falls along the Missouri on I29. Council Bluffs was a particularly pretty spot, as I remember. I was headed for Kansas City. I remember how really pretty it was along the river.

Looks like a nice sunny place. I think you chose your retirement spot very well. I could sell my shack on 5 acres, move there and live in a Frank Wright house, and have enough left left over to materially improve my security blanket.

How many deer are you allowed to kill in a season?

Bob_Smith, are you considering buying the Wright house? I think it'd be a good investment, but I wonder how livable it'd be. How's the insulation and the roof on that thing? (I've come to *hate* flat roofs after repairing one twice in one year.)
Mikey and Wabmester, the Frank Lloyd Wright house is in Early Iowa. That's about one hour from Sioux City, 45 minutes from Fort Dodge, and about two hours from Omaha. Storm Lake is about 15-20 minutes away, and that's where I plan to live.

Storm Lake has a Super-Wal-Mart, while still maintaining a thriving business district. There is a college that is good about bringing in speakers and having many educational events for the general public. There is a large lake with decent fishing. The lake is unique in that almost the entire north and east shore are public parks and walking/bike trails. The parks are usually empty on weekdays and are full of benches along the shore. There's a band shell (with free outdoor concerts in the summer), a tree walk (with many unusual varieties), a shelter house one can rent fairly cheap for large gatherings by the lake, etc. The lake has 2 long man-made piers made of rock and soil that extend far out into the lake for fishing/loafing on a lawn chair. The community is diverse with a fair number of hispanics and asians who were drawn to the area due to low wage packing house jobs about 20 years ago. Those folks are hard-working and determined to make better lives for their families. They're starting to buy up many of the older homes and fixing them up which is good. There are some ethnic restaurants that you'd typically only see in larger cities that have sprung up there due to the diverse cultures represented. The college has a large library open to the public - and the city also has a large library that is very good. Although the town is only about 9,000 population, there is a hospital and a good and surprisingly large medical facility where specialists have office hours. For serious illnesses/surgery many travel to the Mayo Clinic which is only about 3 1/2 hours away. There one can access the best health care in the world.

But there are downsides. Winters involve snow and cold (-20 F is seen several times per winter), but there are four seasons and spring, fall, and summer is nice, although summers get hot and humid. There is no ocean or mountains. Iowa has no professional sports and limited concerts/arts, although Iowa State University is a couple of hours away and draws big acts for those so inclined (I see that Areosmith is scheduled to come soon, for example). The terrain is flat and many would consider it boring. It is very green much of the year, however. And the Missouri River area is nice, as Mikey mentioned.

I probably wouldn't buy the Frank Lloyd Wright house, although they did just recently put on a new roof. I prefer to be within walking distance of the lake and college, and the FLW house is about 20 minutes away. But it is an example of what someone with a very expensive house on either coast or in the city could conceivably do if they were inclined to ER.
Hi Bruce, Welcome to the board.

It seems that your intro post has been hijacked! :)

Just curious, your mortgage payment, plus your savings for retirement, plus costs related to your children all add up to less than 20% of your income?

It seems like you will be seeing some major cost reduction in your household budget over the next 10 years.

You may be able to retire earlier than you originally planned?


RE: Northern Plains

I tried out a website that gave you a checklist of preferences for locations to live in, and returned with the top ten cities that met your criteria.

I was very surprised to find Rapid City, South Dakota on the list. I have only seen the plains from the interstate. It may well be a good place to live.

It is amazing that the price of housing in some areas is so low compared to the cost of building a house. I wonder what other places are like that?
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