Author Topic: Planning to retire in a walkable place  (Read 1792 times)

Le Barbu

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Planning to retire in a walkable place
« on: March 28, 2019, 02:34:17 PM »
We live in a MidCOL with most amenties within 5 miles from home. We are about 5 years from FI and our youngest son will finish high school at the same time . The « suburb » design of our streets means no services closer than 2 miles. Even with a lot of motivation, this place is very car dependant and boring during « workdays » especialy because everyone else is at work.

Our plan is to stay here few more years than, move in a place where everything we need is less than 15 minutes walk. The density overthere is close to 50,000 people per square mile and most housing were built in the 1900’s. There is a lot of small shops, entertaimnents, etc. Walk score 92 and transit score 72

We figure to have no need for cars at this point so the money we spend on them will be available for anything else. Cant talk about this with friends cause, everyone says it sounds crazy!

stoaX

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Re: Planning to retire in a walkable place
« Reply #1 on: March 28, 2019, 03:37:53 PM »
We live in a MidCOL with most amenties within 5 miles from home. We are about 5 years from FI and our youngest son will finish high school at the same time . The « suburb » design of our streets means no services closer than 2 miles. Even with a lot of motivation, this place is very car dependant and boring during « workdays » especialy because everyone else is at work.

Our plan is to stay here few more years than, move in a place where everything we need is less than 15 minutes walk. The density overthere is close to 50,000 people per square mile and most housing were built in the 1900’s. There is a lot of small shops, entertaimnents, etc. Walk score 92 and transit score 72

We figure to have no need for cars at this point so the money we spend on them will be available for anything else. Cant talk about this with friends cause, everyone says it sounds crazy!

For 4 years I lived in a very walkable place and found it to be a tremendous positive.  Where I live now is not so walkable and I miss it.  So good plan!  I will say that I did keep a car despite the walkability because I already had it, and there were just enough things that were too far away to persuade me to ditch the car. 

clarkfan1979

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Re: Planning to retire in a walkable place
« Reply #2 on: March 30, 2019, 11:02:27 AM »
there are many mid-sized cities with a modest cost of living that are bikeable, but not really walkable.

If you want walkable, I think you need major sized cities with good buses & trains.

I think D.C. has the best public transportation systems in the country. Chicago is very walkable and has pockets that are more reasonably priced. Some areas have high rates of crime and homicide, so I wouldn't go that cheap.

Jon Bon

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Re: Planning to retire in a walkable place
« Reply #3 on: March 30, 2019, 11:42:31 AM »
I would say look for the 'old suburbs' that were built before WWI. Most cities have them and traditionally the houses themselves are beautiful. But require more upkeep and the neighborhoods can range from horrible to uber rich so YMMV. These neighbor hoods were pre-car so they almost all have a bunch of wide sidewalks and many of them have commercial spaces that are within a mile or two.  Even better you tend to be only a few miles from downtown itself if you chose to go that way.




Malkynn

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Re: Planning to retire in a walkable place
« Reply #4 on: March 30, 2019, 12:01:09 PM »
What is it that your friends think is crazy??

Le Barbu

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Re: Planning to retire in a walkable place
« Reply #5 on: March 30, 2019, 12:28:55 PM »
Looking for a place in St-Jean-Baptiste in Quebec City. Very diversified in term of population indeed! Most housing were built between 1885 and 1910. This used to be the inwall city suburb (15 minutes walk) about 200 years ago. The reason why buildings are not that old is because of 2 major fires (real fire, not FIRE!). Prices for my tastes are in the 300-350$/sq.ft. compared to my actual place at 180-200$/sq.ft. but downsizing will help to fill the gap. Not decided yet between individual/row house, condo or multi-units  to get some revenues. We’re really good at doing the jobs by ourselves or with little help from small contractors.

Le Barbu

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Re: Planning to retire in a walkable place
« Reply #6 on: March 30, 2019, 12:47:51 PM »
What is it that your friends think is crazy??

The idea to live in the heart of the city AND into a 100+ years old building. Other comments I get are about space (no personnal lawn nor pool), noise, air quality (pollution, smells) strange people (poors, etnics, students, tourists, etc) and trouble to drive or park a car.

If you visited Little Italy in Mannathan, quite the same mood but everyone is white AND french speeking exept for the tourists (mostly from asia)

Malkynn

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Re: Planning to retire in a walkable place
« Reply #7 on: March 30, 2019, 12:56:03 PM »
What is it that your friends think is crazy??

The idea to live in the heart of the city AND into a 100+ years old building. Other comments I get are about space (no personnal lawn nor pool), noise, air quality (pollution, smells) strange people (poors, etnics, students, tourists, etc) and trouble to drive or park a car.

Your friends sound limited.
You will make new friends in the city.

Le Barbu

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Re: Planning to retire in a walkable place
« Reply #8 on: March 30, 2019, 01:24:21 PM »
What is it that your friends think is crazy??

The idea to live in the heart of the city AND into a 100+ years old building. Other comments I get are about space (no personnal lawn nor pool), noise, air quality (pollution, smells) strange people (poors, etnics, students, tourists, etc) and trouble to drive or park a car.

Your friends sound limited.
You will make new friends in the city.

LOL
This is what happens when you live in an hommogenous town!

Most people here are mid-upper class, drive new SUVs, travel to Cuba once a year and whime about paying to much taxes. Life is very car oriented (jobs, errands and hobbies). As a family of 4, we drive a total of 15k miles a year which mean 50% less than the average household just because we care a little bit.

The new government here plan to build new bridges and bigger Highways...

Le Barbu

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Re: Planning to retire in a walkable place
« Reply #9 on: September 10, 2019, 06:50:14 PM »
Found a 3 storeys/units building in a mixed uses neighborood. Built back in 1865, it’s a structural maconery bulding (4 bricks wythes) with a flat rooftop. Each unit is about 1,200 sq.ft. and the biggest caveats are energy costs and some exterior features demanding extra maintenance (wooden openings, trims, old brick walls etc) Overall, the spot is nearly perfect, the price is fair (lower than average) and the lot is large enough (backyard). This place is actually rented as long term and Airbnb so, we can move in and have some income (get closer to FI). I figured almost 100k$ more than our actual house to buy and remodel (update) this place. Operating cost would be 5k$ more/year and income can range from 15k$ to 25k$/year depending how we rent the 2 units. Does anyone have experience with that kind of old building in cold (Quebec) climate? It seems you cannot improve insulation much without affecting the building integrity so, convertion from electricity to water radiator (gaz) or heat pump looks appealing. What do you think?

mozar

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Re: Planning to retire in a walkable place
« Reply #10 on: September 24, 2019, 03:51:14 PM »
I've heard good things about heat pumps. Not really common in the usa which is where most forum readers are from. You can look into making the apartment air tight. So no loss of heat going through gaps which are common in old buildings. I don't see why you can't blow in more insulation @Le Barbu

Le Barbu

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Re: Planning to retire in a walkable place
« Reply #11 on: September 24, 2019, 05:15:51 PM »
Maconery structural buildings are a complete different beast. Old one were not insulated and if you want to do it from inside, temperature gradient and moisture can affect the structure. It is not impossible but very tricky and expensive.

We just found another place that is timber framed and well maintained.

To be continued...

AMandM

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Re: Planning to retire in a walkable place
« Reply #12 on: September 25, 2019, 05:25:39 PM »
If you visited Little Italy in Mannathan, quite the same mood but everyone is white AND french speeking exept for the tourists (mostly from asia)

Totally off topic, but I'm surprised by this. Why is everyone white? Doesn't Quebec City have immigrants like Montreal does?

On topic, I sympathise! We moved from an outer suburb to an adjacent-to-the-city walkable suburb. People thought we were crazy, too, but it was definitely a good choice for us.

Le Barbu

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Re: Planning to retire in a walkable place
« Reply #13 on: September 25, 2019, 07:48:32 PM »
If you visited Little Italy in Mannathan, quite the same mood but everyone is white AND french speeking exept for the tourists (mostly from asia)

Totally off topic, but I'm surprised by this. Why is everyone white? Doesn't Quebec City have immigrants like Montreal does?

There is few immigrants pockets but it’s still marginal and they are low profile.