Friday, August 23, 2019

Making Hybrid Plans

Hello again.  Everything has changed and nothing has changed.  That's because most of the changes have been in my head, as in, my ever-changing plans for the future.  Since my last post, I was really struggling with wanting to quit my job immediately.  I felt like if I agreed to go visit our company headquarters at the end of June, I would be committing myself to stay with this job for many more years.  Well, I decided that it wasn't time to quit just yet.  With our office closing in a year and changes continuing to happen with the company, I could at least hang on until next August.  Summer in Arizona is just a really hard time with high electric bills and day after day of exhausting heat.  I get discouraged because it doesn't seem like I am making any progress.  But, I told myself that I only had to get through June, July, and August and then the rest of the year would fly by.  It always does.  Once temperatures start to go down I can get back to checking things off my own to-do list and the next thing I know it will be January again.  

So, I bought the ticket to Connecticut and went to visit our company headquarters.  It was quite interesting.  I've worked for the company 12 years and I had visited our old headquarters when I was first hired but it was nothing like this place.  We have a manufacturing plant there and it was fascinating to finally see how they make things and to meet people who's names I have only seen on emails.  I'm glad I went.

In the meantime, I got a terrible sore throat which turned into an earache and kidney pain through most of July.  It was one of those things where one day I felt better and then the next day I felt worse.  The antibiotics didn't seem to do much and then my intestines revolted.  The doctor switched the antibiotic but I am just now starting to feel normal again.  That's over 2 months of feeling cruddy.  When I feel sick I always get scared about retiring early.  What would I do if I was relying on a part time job and then couldn't work?  I need more safety nets.

And also, I made some decisions about my mother's house that I am living in.  I decided to ask one sister if she wanted to buy the house with me and the other 2 sisters if they wanted to be bought out.  They agreed and we are working on getting the title switched.  My original plan was to rent the house out full time but during Jan., Feb., and Mar., we can get almost triple the year-round rent.  Then I thought I would rent it out as a furnished rental for those months and then have an estate sale and rent it out unfurnished as a year-round rental.  But I still didn't like that idea.  So my current idea is that I will move out December-March or April depending on if it is rented, and then I will move back in.  I'm going to use the extra room off of the closet to store my things that I don't need and live in my unfinished barn-shed tiny house.  My main priority is getting the electricity done.  I contacted the electrician again and we are aiming for the end of September when it gets cooler.  I haven't been out there all summer because of the heat and also the paper wasps that have made nests on the barn-shed.  They die off when the weather gets cool.  When the electrical wiring is done, I only need some insulation and I can glamp for 4 months or so.  I'll use the shower and washing machine in the mobile home and have a camping toilet, mini-fridge, induction cooktop, and microwave (I'll have to buy one because I sold my extra one at the last garage sale, oops).  I'll probably hook up a sink with just gravity fed water and a drain that goes outside.

When the house is vacant again, I'll move back in and pay my sister half of the going rate for yearly rent which I estimated at $650.  I will pay my own utilities and she will pay half of the property tax, insurance, HOA fees, and maintenance.  I will move out every year Dec-Mar. until I decide that I can't afford it or want to live in my tiny house full time.  Then we will sell the furnishings and rent it out on a yearly basis.

So that's the current plan.  While we are waiting for the paperwork to get worked out, I have been getting some things fixed around the house starting with the main sewer backflow valve which stuck closed for the second time since we moved here.  It is quite inconvenient when the sewer backs up.  I was doing laundry and taking a shower and I heard the toilet making funny sounds.  That was the sewage coming up.  Ugh.  Then the laundry drained and the toilet over-flowed while I was outside trying to remember where the main sewer clean-out was.  And I didn't realize that the sewage backed up into the washing machine until I was wearing the clothes from that load and wondered why I could still smell sewage.  Icky.  Everything got bleached.  It cost $800 for the valve to be replaced and I went ahead with the other plumbing problems, cracked garbage disposal, filter for water spout in kitchen, tighten kitchen faucet, fix bathroom faucets handles so that they stop instead of going all the way around, replace bathtub spout because the diverter wouldn't close to make the water pressure go to the shower.  Whew, done.  Now I just need the leak at the skylight fixed and a gate added at the side yard.  And I bought flowers for the front yard and need to get them in the ground before they die, I've just been waiting for it to rain which they said it would do today but nothing yet.

Now you are caught up again. Here are some pictures of my other summer projects:

This cart was a Christmas present to myself.  I finally put it together.
The carpet in the storage room got peed on by the chihuahuas I was fostering last year.  I took it outside and hosed it off then poured lysol and soap on it and rinsed.  I let is stay in the sun for days.  The padding was disgusting and went in the trash.  I thought about buying new carpet but it doesn't smell anymore and is already cut to shape.  Since I am going to be using the room to store my own stuff, I decided to put the carpet back in without padding.  If we ever rent the house year-round, I'll buy new carpet.

I bleached and painted the floor of the storage room before I put the carpet back.  It doesn't smell now.

A very long gopher snake visited my yard for a week.  He always startled me but I was glad to have him visit.

I repurposed the fiddle-muff that I had bought for my mom when she was in the assisted living home.  My dog appreciates it.

In my search for the water leak, I made a hole in the ceiling.  I think I know where the leak is coming in now.  The repairman will be here in a couple of weeks.

I have been having fun buying southwestern decor from the thrift stores around here.  I need a few more things.

I decided on "Italian chicken" as my theme for the kitchen.  Haha.  I don't think that is a "thing". Maybe I will be a trend-setter.


Dave said...

Seems like a pretty complicated plan, my dear Daizy. It means you have to maintain 2 residences including getting one upgraded to live in 3 months a year, if I understood your plan correctly. BLEECCHHH @ the sewage backing up and fouling up laundry, among other things.

As for your health issues relating to a possible early retirement, what do the ACA exchange policies cost in your area, and do they provide enough coverage? As you know, I retired in late 2008 but had adequate HI coverage through the ACA when I had some health issues in 2015 which included a 12-day hospital stay.

squire said...

I really like those carts, very handy to have around.

Livingroom said...

I am a small landlord who seconds Dave's advice about ACA. The income deductions and expenses from rental properties will allow you to take advantage of ACA subsidies, making health insurance affordable.