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Change is in the Cards

June 30th, 2009 at 09:04 am

My dh is retiring tomorrow, on July 1. Originally, once he officially retired, he was planning to participate in a program that allows tenured faculty to teach 50% for 5 years. He has decided that doing this for one or maybe two years may be enough. So he will teach in the fall and then may completely retire at the end of 2009. Although his decision is not set in stone, it surprised me. I will support him whatever he decides... working 50% for a few years or "completely" retiring. So, now we are facing some decisions.

We live in a condo in Silicon Valley and have a second home in ID, where my DDs live. Our plan was to eventually sell the CA condo and move to the ID home once dh was 100% retired. Until recently, I didn't think it would happen for at least five years, so we were just coasting along. But now I am facing the reality of moving from the area that has been my home for ~17 years.

I love the diversity of Silicon Valley and the excellent access to so many activities. But the biggest change will be moving away from family and friends. My only sibling and best friend, my sister, lives 45 minutes away. My niece and her children live 25 minutes away, and I am very close to them. Over the years, I've made good friends and will miss seeing them on a regular basis. My dh's children live in Fresno, ~4 hours away, so we will see them less often, too.

But ID is a beautiful state, made all the more special because my daughters live there. However, they have lives and careers of their own. Although it will be great to be minutes away from them, I can't and won't expect them to alter their lives for us. Once we are permanently living in our new city, dh and I will have to work on making new friends and getting involved in community activities. And while I don't think it will necessarily be an easy transition, it will be an exciting challenge.

Another issue is that real estate is extremely depressed in our area, and we may not be able to easily sell our condo. So, dh and I have been discussing the idea renting our condo, something we did for the first three years after we bought it. We can rent it for enough to cover the payment and a 10% management fee. And, we could rent it for up to three years and still get our capital gains exclusion. Not that it matters right now... I think the place is worth about the same as we paid for it in 2003, so there is really no gain to consider at the moment.

I have been reflecting about why I am leaning toward renting our condo. To be honest, I feel we can always move back to Silicon Valley if living in Idaho is not what we expected it to be. It's not that I think we won't enjoy living in Idaho, but I know it will be different to live there full-time instead of just spending a few weeks here and there. So, we'll see... time will tell and help us clarify our decisions.

2 Responses to “Change is in the Cards”

  1. BCN Finance Blog Says:

    Why not sell the home in Idaho and stay in your condo? It sounds as if you have reservations about moving, and are giving yourself an out (renting the condo instead of selling it)to move back. It just seems like you are making a life decision that you are not completely on board with.

  2. monkeymama Says:

    I'd vote for moving and trying it out. I think it's probably a mixed blessing that you can't sell your condo right now - gives you some time before making such a permanent decision. I think anyone would have reservations in your shoes, but you won't know until you try...

    Give it a couple of years, and you can always move back, right?

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