In our 70's, want to move to another state

ryseryse_2004March 17, 2014

We are long retired, living with our 60 acre property with a creek running through the middle. We love the solitude and I love to garden --- plenty of space for that and my husband loves to hunt.

BUT - In IL, property taxes are one of the highest states, cost of living is high. Barely affordable for us. We could move to a southern state and eliminate our mortgage and pay a fraction of property tax. We could have the acreage and solitude we have now but be 10 hours farther from kids/gkids. We are currently 2 hours from the kids and thought that would be doable for visiting but with all the activities gkids now have, we seldom see them. We visit them but have animals so can't do an overnight.

So, we put our property on the market and are looking in the Jackson area of TN. It could take a long time to sell this place so we probably have plenty of time to investigate areas.
Haven't told the kids yet -- that should be interesting.

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Just wait a few years and god forbid, one of you has a major medical problem or you are left alone, and then you'll really be stressing your children and their families, and they will be begging you to move back closer to them.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2014 at 4:58PM
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So, with possibly another 20+ years of life we are supposed to worry about our kids? We raised 5 of them and it would seem that this is our time.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2014 at 5:03PM
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Just wait until you need them. Have counseled many people who are spending their 40's and 50's traveling every month to take care of Mom who's going blind and dad has dementia. Of course, they had moved to Florida or Arizona or wherever to live their own lives and are now a thousand miles away.

Do whatever you want, just think thru the what-ifs and whens and the consequences on others. It's just follow-thru planning. Don't act as tho it'll never happen to you.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2014 at 5:09PM
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This IS your time, Ryse Ryse. Go ahead with your plans to move. 20 years is a long time to slowly grow broke from property expenses on the off chance that your kids will be available to help you later on. Just buy a long term care insurance policy and set aside funds for your eventual care needs.

On that note, though, do weigh the availability and quality of medical services and assisted living facilities in or near where you want to re-locate.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2014 at 5:23PM
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Memphis is a major medical center for the region, and several world class hospitals are there. However, it's at least an hour from Jackson, TN on 40. On a backroad, it could be 2 hours. My mother's family is from a small area not too far from Jackson, called Bolivar, TN and the surrounding countryside. It's certainly a good location for hunting and fishing if you get the right property. But, that's about it. There's really NOTHING else going on there, other than some meth cooking and gang activity. Gardening can be challenging if you aren't used to the 100ð summers that can frequently happen. It's also humid enough that there are a lot of fungal issues that impact gardens.

All in all, the northwest part of TN, closer to Martin might be more interesting, and have more water access. It's closer to Reelfoot and KY lake. Or, more central TN, between the TN river and Nashville. It's not like meth hasn't made it's way into almost every rural spot, but there's less gang activity and crime in those areas.

Also, 70 is when my mom's health started to be shaky. She needed to quit driving, and be transported to the grocery store and doctor, and that's when my sister moved in with her to make sure those things happened. So something more urban where you could walk to the grocery store or library, but still hunt or fish on public lands might be a better choice for aging in place. She's 90 now, and has enough health conditions and spends enough time needing care that it would not at all be possible for her to live alone.

Not saying that 70 is the end, but it IS the start of needing to depend on other people more. That is something to think about deeply before contemplating moving that far away. Do you have the funds to pay for an in home aide in the lower cost area? No one likes losing their independence, but it does happen to us all. It's the wise person who plans for the "what if's" and so that their bases are covered, come 80 and a broken hip, or come 110, spitting fire, and getting that phone call from the President.

If the ONLY reason to move so far is to have a lower cost of living, then you will be very unhappy in your new home. You're not moving TO a place. You're moving AWAY from a place. Not at all the same thing.

This post was edited by live_wire_oak on Mon, Mar 17, 14 at 17:49

    Bookmark   March 17, 2014 at 5:44PM
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I admire your ambition. I am almost 60 and dreaming of a retirement on a sunny beach. But I need to work 10 more years.

You may already know this, but as you get to be a bit older some things about your location get more important. Easy access to advanced medical care like cancer treatment, heart surgery and joint replacement. Transportation, both local if you can't drive and access to airports/trains for longer trips. These are things I am looking at. Right now I have all of them close by, but I also have lots of rain in the winter.

The only way I am going to get my house on the beach in California is to win the lottery. I better go buy my ticket!

Best wishes to you.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2014 at 5:52PM
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You can't choose someplace closer AND lower cost of living? Say, IA? Indiana? Ohio? (depending on where you support is?)

Are there senior rates for your property taxes to help make it more affordable that you can apply for? (there are in my county/state).

Your decision to move seems rather rash... Do you know anything about Jackson?

    Bookmark   March 17, 2014 at 8:53PM
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Being an IL resident also, I completely understand the desire to get out - we've been investigating NC for some time now. We're years away from retirement age but our sons have already flown the coop and live far away - one in CA and one in CO. We have considered over and over moving closer to them but then what? They could pick up and move for a job - do we pick up and follow them? In fact one is looking at a job in Maine and the other wants to move back to WA - I think they planned this just to drive me nuts ;-)

All this to say, you have to go where YOU will be happy. None of us can know what's coming. And as my friends always tell me when I do the *what if* game - you move back closer if need be.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2014 at 10:00PM
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I also have to chime in and recommend an escape from the state my husband and I refer to as "Illinoying". Moving to Michigan, of all places, at least a third was slashed from our tax bill and we have many more services provided for the taxes we do pay. Not to mention, you can see it being reinvested back into the community.

It's your life and you should move where you think would be some place you would love. A change of scenery can do so much for a person's mental well being. In this day and age there are so many more resources to stay connected with people; I believe in planning for emergencies down the road (which I am sure you've discussed or will discuss) but I'd hate to live the rest of precious remaining years basing every decision around what *might* happen. If something were to happen, you can always move back near family. Just because it's a major decision, it doesn't necessarily lock you into one path until the day you die, should you decide to have a change of heart.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2014 at 6:07PM
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is there a particular reason why you are looking at Jackson, TN?

    Bookmark   March 18, 2014 at 6:15PM
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I also say move. Just be considerate if/when you get to the point you can't do it, sell again and simplify more. This may never happen.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2014 at 6:38PM
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I also say move. If you get to the point you can't handle it, sell again and simplify more. This may never happen.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2014 at 6:50PM
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Start a list of pros and cons in moving. We moved from CA to ND around that age, BUT, we have a DD and family here, two grandkids and their families and when I lost DH I chose to move into an assisted living place about 30 minutes away. Would I move that far away? No, because of various reasons. Could you find someplace closer with less expenses and upkeep? Check into Senior living places, etc. Just my thoughts

    Bookmark   March 18, 2014 at 10:59PM
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I don't think it's so crazy!! I'm considering moving to central america!! lol I'm in my 70's plus have terminal cancer Now that's crazy ?? lol Good luck with whatever yiou decide!!! gary

    Bookmark   March 19, 2014 at 6:45AM
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Thank you for your support. Jackson, TN was pretty much picked out of the air and we are open to any other ideas but we do want S. KY or NW TN ---- at least right now. We have to start someplace and then do research. What we are looking for is a low cost of living - we are living on SS. Period. Also, we want better weather. No, I don't mean a place with no winter - just a shorter winter. Heat doesn't bother either of us.

We are both 'home bodies' and love quiet, woods, nature. I really hate large cities but would want a city large enough to have decent grocery stores and medical help within 20-30 min.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2014 at 8:52AM
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Gary - I hope your move is everything you are hoping for and provides what you want at this challenging time of your life - are you moving alone or with someone? Best of luck to you

    Bookmark   March 19, 2014 at 8:54AM
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I don't think it's a good idea to burden our children with our health problems as we age.
I would look at what services are in a town before I moved and pick one that does have good facilities.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2014 at 10:53PM
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my point was that if it's crazy to move to another state in your 70's what about another country,??lol
I started a tthread on it "Buying outside the US"
Was NOT my intention to hijack this thread lol Sorry ryse.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2014 at 4:27AM
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Enjoy the life you have now and if that means moving then I think you should do it. I would also choose a house that will let you age in place such as a ranch house for first floor living. Good luck with your search!

    Bookmark   March 21, 2014 at 1:52AM
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Sophie Wheeler

Have you even been to Jackson?? Or is this all all just mental games? You need to spend some extended time in any location that you want to relocate to. Like a month at an extended stay hotel. I can't imagine going longer than a week there personally. It's a place to move AWAY from, not a place to move to. Now, if you were talking Pickwick Lake, that I could understand. Lots of folks retire to that area.

Get in your car with a suitcase and come on down. This isn't an ''internet-able'' decision.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 12:01PM
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The internet is a starting point. We have to start somewhere. Once our house sells, we will start visiting places but for now we just want to narrow down our choices.

We, of course won't lock into an area until we have been there. Staying in a place for a month to see how we like it isn't going to happen.

Why do people want to leave the Jackson area?

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 12:22PM
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You have to start somewhere and that's how we started - researching places on the internet, then visiting. We had specific criteria, some the same as you in that we want milder winters but still 4 seasons. One thing that was critical for me is average # of sunny days/year - I won't move where it's less sunny than what I have now, so as much as we love the PNW I don't think I could live there. Everything is a balancing act and it's helpful to compare statistics of places side by side. If you take a place that's a known quantity for you then compare it to a new potential place, you have a basis for comparing the things you know you like or dislike, cost of living breakdowns, crime stats, taxes..... etc. I've mentioned on other threads, the website Best Places and one reason I find it so helpful is the ability to compare side by side. Another thing to do is read on highly rated retirement areas, specific towns and cities, then start looking in the surrounding area where you can access the amenities but be a bit more off the beaten path since it sounds like that's your preference.

Here is a link that might be useful: Sperling's Best places

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 2:57PM
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Many people relocate to a whole other part of the country because of their job without the luxury of an extended stay. Speaking from personal experience, one can research a new locale and move there with few surprises after spending a weekend there. We have more tools for researching a potential new home than ever before.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 4:16PM
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"Many people relocate to a whole other part of the country because of their job without the luxury of an extended stay."

In 24 years of service in the Navy with frequent relocations, My wife and I never took more that three days to select a home. (And this was pre-Internet.)

Of course the general area was chosen by the Navy so it wasn't we were shopping to decide what State. (Except when we got Orders to Washington, DC.) lol

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 4:59PM
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I want to really thank all of you for your responses. This is a very important move for us. However, to the private messager: Not helpful and what's wrong with pig parts and cornbread?????

Yes there are undesirable people everywhere you go (even on the net) and you don't have to make them your friends. I believe there are good people everywhere and will find them wherever we go.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 5:02PM
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We moved to SE Georgia in 2007. It is very rural and quiet..most of the time. Still getting used to beagles barking that are kept in cages for hunting. The people are super friendly, but they keep to themselves. Would and have helped us in a heartbeat. We are about an hour from Jacksonville, Fl and great medical care. We only pay about 40 bucks a year for property taxes because hubby is a senior, that includes trash pickup and road grading, we live on a dirt road. We don't have to pay any school taxes here. It is so quiet now I can hear myself think!

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 5:12PM
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That's it Zackey! That is what we have and that is what we want. (Well, we want those property taxes for sure!) We are not very social people but our neighbors (within 10 miles LOL) are very helpful when someone is in need. I have a feeling that is true in most rural areas.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 5:20PM
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It is very true here. I grew up in northern Pa and the people were friendly and would help you out, but I never saw anything like this.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 5:26PM
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I replied to your other post. I live 15 minutes north of Jackson. Please send me a private email using my page. I would be happy to provide information about the area and even help you look at properties.

I moved from northern IL to TN 7 years ago. The only regret I have is the lack of decent restaurants. But Memphis and Nashville are not far.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 3:21PM
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>>Just buy a long term care insurance policy and set aside funds for your eventual care needs. >>

Umm....I'd be cautious about such a statement. I can't believe that anyone who has actually applied for an LTC policy would say such a thing. For one thing, all carriers stop writing LTCi policies at age 79.

For another, if you have ever seen an Age Progression Preferred Premium chart for LTCi, you would know that the costs for a policy from an A+ rated company go up gradually through about age 58, then climb dramatically for every year after age 60.

I used to pull insurance quotes for clients who had $5+M of net worth with a minimum of $500K investible funds (meaning no 401k, only IRAs and taxable $$$). The only people who could afford it were well under age 55.

A mere eight years ago, a quote for LTCi that I pulled on a healthy 68-yr-old male came back at $9,000/yr. His wife's quote was worse, because she was 4 yrs older - about $14K/yr. This was for our standard: unlimited benefit (being dropped as an option by almost all carriers), 90 day exclusion (self-insured for the first 90 days), compound inflation protection, home healthcare, and $200/day benefit.

Premiums have risen dramatically since I pulled that quote. Property taxes pale against the cost of LTCi when one is elderly.

We have LTCi policies, but we bought them in our late 40's. They are unaffordable now, for almost everyone.

If you are going to move ANYWHERE, I'd suggest investigating not only the medical facilities but the skilled nursing facilities and availability of home healthcare assistance. That means I would actually visit the skilled nursing facilities and look up their record on the Medicare website.

I personally wouldn't suggest moving anywhere just to be near kids - at least, as long as those "kids" are still employed. These days it is common to have to move to get a new job or keep an existing one. You can't depend on your kids being locked into one location for decades.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2014 at 4:40PM
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Yes, we do plan to be in the vicinity of good medical care and also, yes - LTCi is not an option for the above reasons. We will own our home outright so will have equity in that.

So true about kids moving all over the place. You can't depend on being near them anymore and since we have lived at least 2 hours from any for years, we don't have a need to be near grandchildren. Also, being near children/gkids so they can look after you when you are feeble seems a bit selfish. (I am sure that isn't what any of you meant.)

We have (hopefully) a long life ahead of us and want to enjoy it to the fullest. Now THAT is selfish!

    Bookmark   March 25, 2014 at 5:05PM
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I don't think that is selfish at all! I am 56 and my hubby is 73. There is nothing wrong with wanting to live a good life together without depending on your children. We never had kids. Not sure if that is good or bad seeing what's out there now. I have my regrets, but I got married at 16 and I just wasn't mature enough to want kids. I was afraid of childbirth. My mom didn't prepare me at all for my adult life. I had to learn from the streets or just find out on my own if I was doing right or wrong. I forgive her, but I don't know why she did that to me.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2014 at 6:26PM
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