Saturday, December 26, 2015

Weighing/exploring housing options and impact on my budget


I am certain that we will be moving this Summer, with my lease ending in July. I simply will not be able to continue to cover the costs of living here, with child support ending in June. Knowing of this impending move, I have been exploring different towns as well as the city just North of here, where we spend the bulk of our time with errands/shopping/medical apts etc. I am tryng to get a feel for the rental markets in those other areas as well. What type of housing is available (private home, appartment in home, duplex, appartment building, town house/condo). Come April, as a realtor advised, this search will be in earnest.

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I am seriously considering a move to a complex, (vs a private home)as in addition to dropping my rent costs, costs for lawn care/snow removal/firewood/chimney cleaning/trash would be eliminated from my budget completely. There may be further reductions in different line items of my budget as well  such as reduced oil as it'll be a smaller place to heat, possible reduction in auto and renters insurance as well as auto excise taxes- all of which are based on zip code(they could theoreticaly also go up!),  and I would expect a reduction in the charges by my cleaning service, as their fees are supposedly based upon square footage of home. Not including the last list of possible further reductions, I stand to save $241.16 in the elimination of services that I first listed. Coupled with the reduction in rent, having looked at 5 complexes on line, I immediately stand to save $$826.16 to $1492.16/month. These are moderate rentals.  Yes, Connecticut is a very expensive place to live.

A private home rental can be found in these same towns/city, in a price range I am comfortable with but there would be the added upkeep services as costs. Something I am still considering; a downside to complexes are hearing the neighbors!.

I am also pouring over all areas of my budget, seeking possible reductions.  Some will happen soon:

-Verizon bill dropping as I remove DS #1 who is supposed to be reimbursing me for his line ($15/mo) but continues to need to be chased after. I told him last month that i was tired of it, go and get your own line @ probably $35/mo depending if he upgrades to a smart phone (he only has unlimited talk/text thru me on a plan that Verizon no longer offers). I need to decide what phone I need. I hope to handle that this week.

-CSA is being dropped. Those funds, however, will roll over back into my general grocery budget. We are now actively using up what few "forbidden" sodium ladden foods are on hand, as well the general pantry and freezer stockpiles. I don't want to have to move it, we'll eat it, saving me from spending at the stores. I can rebuild later, on a smaller scale.

-I am looking at all of our possessions, earmarking what to sell/donate and selling what I can now. Cash acquired can offset anticipated moving expenses. Until I commit firmly to a new residence, I won't know for certain what furniture, for example, I need to sell.

Some will be effective in June, with the twins turning 18: all clothing, haircuts are on them, although I will continue to gift at birthdays/Xmas, as I have done with the older 2. Slowly, they are expected to cover their own costs, as a means to build independance, they already cover their "extras" and entertainment/outings etc.



Florence said...

I think a complex is a very good idea, especially if it would save you time in your commute/errands/medical care as well as so much money.

meme said...

I have lived in a few complexes in my life - and I have to say that I did in fact save on utilities - the heat was included in my rent in one of the places along with the gas to heat the hot water. There is a certain "safety factor" in living in a complex too - usually the complexes screen applicants on criminal backgrounds as well as credit - so they are a safe place to live. There were at times - loud neighbors - but with calling the rental office, that problem was usually taken care of without my name being used.

I hope I don't overstep my bounds, but I know from reading that one of your twins has some special needs - it is too bad that Dad won't be continuing to help support two grandchildren have some special needs and won't be fully able to support themselves at eighteen. My daughter's child support stops on their 18th birthday too - I think in cases where special needs are involved, the family court should better consider the needs of the child. But - that is my own "soapbox"!

You have really thought out your move....

Linda said...

You have the ability to go online and cut his phone off and on. Warn him this will happen and then do it. I guarantee you that only once will be necessary. I had to do this with a bf's daughter...all long ago.

You can do this without stranding him, like when he gets home at night and is safe at home. Then, he can find the $15 one way or the other. Also, give him the option of faithfully paying for it, or getting his own plan.

CT Bargain Mom said...

Wil the twins be graduating from school this year too? Maybe if they are they can share a bedroom (especially if one moves into a dorm at college). What about your DD - will she still be living with you? Rory to see the eldest is making you chase him for phone $$. I would want to be able to get in touch with my kids no matter probably opt for the cheapest plan possible to ensure it - but maybe the dad can start footing that bill as well.

Having lived in the Danbury area I know it isn't cheap for rent and as desirable as end units are they aren't always the cheapest to heat. Consider that - especially if it's just a year stopgap until you purchase a home again. Although with your surgeries and physical limitations maybe buying in a complex isn't a bad idea - someone else to do the outside stuff (yes for a fee) might be easier on you physically as the kids go on with their lives and move on...

Marcia in rural WNY said...

That same thought crossed my mind as well. New York takes support to age 21, much to the chagrin of my former son in law, from Ohio, who thought he would be off the hook when she turned 18. It took him a while past 21 to catch up on arrears, but when he had the money he was willing to send it. His work record was less than exemplary.

Having spent the first 8 years of our marriage as a military family, we soon learned that the top floor apartment is quietest--the downstairs neighbors may hear you but you hear less when upstairs. It may be less convenient in other regards, but it is quiet.

NAN said...

I was wondering about your one son also. Here in Florida, most with special needs continue their education until age 22. They work on vocational skills and intern also. Are the boys graduating from high school? Also, your son could be able to get SSI but then he would no longer be your dependent and would pay rent and his share of utilities. He would probably qualify for food stamps though. You are doing great living in such an expensive area. I keep thinking I want to sell my house and move to an apartment too! I know you have mentioned buying again though- not me. My daughter says I should buy a condo- NO WAY!

CTMOM said...

Marcia-on one of the complexes, all of the 3 bed units are located on the top floor. I recall an appartment complex I lived in when first married: studio "garden" apt on the bottom entrance floor, townhouse style apt above. When in the townhouse apt, I never heated the 3rd floor as there was redidual heat (rises) and a southern exposure. Kept the second, main floor, cool-again same reasons. This was electric heat in CT, and it was affordable. Several of the complexes I am considering are fairly new, so good insulation, energy efficient windows etc.

Kathy said...

I think you are wise to plan ahead! I'm glad that you are considering all of your options.
Do what works best for you and your family.
I'm not really a fan of apartment living, but perhaps it was just the apartment where we lived. I'm sure there are better ones with thicker walls etc. I think our townhouse was better built, and I didn't mind it as much.
Good luck with whatever you choose.

Lee Ann said...

So wise to be planning ahead. I think that a complex may be best as well. Like you listed all of the costs that WON"T be your responsibility any more. WE are throwing around the idea of downsizing. Our home will be paid for entirely in mid 2017. I would like something around 1000 square feet but with a bigger kitchen and more closets than we have now. We could sell this place and probably buy an older townhome for cash. Lots to consider.

One thing to consider for us we'd like a bedroom on the first floor. Is that something you would like?