What did you do with your property before you left for the horizon? - SailNet Community
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What did you do with your property before you left for the horizon?

I'm dangerously close right now to just selling off all my things and loading the family (my wife and a 3yr old) onto our Mirage 33 and heading south for the Erie Canal, ICW, then the Islands. That's a whole ball of wax on it's own, and I need some tips for the big pieces of this puzzle...



So what did everyone do with their property when they left? How did it work out? Why did you do it that way?



I'm in a weird position. I know sailing (especially forums) has alot of dreamers, maybe I'm one, who knows. I have a successful career in the government as a manager. I have extensive experience in emergency response and management as well, so I have many transferable skills that should either get my job back or at least a decent job should this all fail. My wife is a nurse and I think it goes without saying she can work almost anywhere, especially in Canada, should this fail. My daughter is only 3 so she wouldn't be missing school yet.

We own a beautiful home on a spring fed lake. We paid 135k for it, and I expect with the reno's and current market we could get 250k for it now. We owe 90k, which in block numbers to keep it simple would net us 160k in the pocket if we sold and it worked out well. So if we did sell we would have a decent cruising kitty (not to mention selling the rest of our belongings would probably add 30-50k to the number). However, it would mean we would have nowhere to "return" to if this failed a week after we left.

Our other option is to look for renters. We could probably get between 1500$-2000$ a month for it, but then I would be a Skipper AND a landlord. Services in my area (very rural) are extremely limited so it's not like I could easily just sat-phone a plumber if something went wrong with our tenants bathroom. Also the issues of finding long term tenants, and also if we failed and had to return it may be hard telling them "yep sorry, we're baaaaack". Lease Vs. Rent Vs. Rent to Own. Idk there's so many options.

I'm leaning towards the "all in" sell it all and hope that 200k in our pocket could sustain us on a 33ft boat for a while until we either decided to settle somewhere else or return home. The other option is just sail and sail forever and hope for the best. I'm rambling. Thoughts on property?

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Re: What did you do with your property before you left for the horizon?

Kinda impossible for anyone to say. Itís a very personal choice that can only be made by you and your family.

We divested of all real estate (not that we ever had much). But this was the result of a 10-year plan that eased us into the vagabond/cruising life. We spent increasingly long periods cruising the Great Lakes, so when the time came to make the leap we already knew we could live happily on our boat. But we are only two ó no kids, and probably a bit older than you and yours.

If you havenít spent a lot of time cruising with the whole family ó and by that I mean spending months at a time living and travelling on the boat ó then Iíd think keeping the land home for now is the wisest move. Unless you need the cash to make the transition, I think it smart to ensure this is going to work for all of you.

Can you just close it up, or get a house sitter to look after it without the worry of finding renters?
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Re: What did you do with your property before you left for the horizon?

We sold our house. We closed three weeks ago, and have one week left until we have to be out. We are storing a few things in a cube van since this is a sailing sabbatical, not a rest of our life move. We should have about 100K, and hope to be out for two years. As we are just beginning, I canít give you too much knowledge from experience. My one caution would be to not overestimate what ďstuffĒ besides real estate is worth. I thought we would make quite a bit of money selling things, but I ended up giving a lot of it away as the pittance people were willing to pay was hardly worth the hassle. If you make the jump, maybe we will see you along the way.
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Re: What did you do with your property before you left for the horizon?

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Originally Posted by MikeOReilly View Post
Kinda impossible for anyone to say. Itís a very personal choice that can only be made by you and your family.

We divested of all real estate (not that we ever had much). But this was the result of a 10-year plan that eased us into the vagabond/cruising life. We spent increasingly long periods cruising the Great Lakes, so when the time came to make the leap we already knew we could live happily on our boat. But we are only two ó no kids, and probably a bit older than you and yours.

If you havenít spent a lot of time cruising with the whole family ó and by that I mean spending months at a time living and travelling on the boat ó then Iíd think keeping the land home for now is the wisest move. Unless you need the cash to make the transition, I think it smart to ensure this is going to work for all of you.

Can you just close it up, or get a house sitter to look after it without the worry of finding renters?
Hey Mike, thanks for the reply as always. I am 37 and she is 36, so we are somewhere in the young to middle aged range. Probably about due for a career change as per the "real world" standards. I think you're idea is spot on, and I may explore it more if I start a (I'm sure already overdone) "I wanna leave now, what do I do" thread. We don't have a ton of upfront capital as we run our mortgage as a "one" account (like a giant line of credit) so it shows me as 90k in the hole, but it's really just the remaining house principal. Finding renters would be a pain but would most likely afford the cost of continuing to pay down the mortgage, along with house insurance and incidentals\repairs as needed for the tenants. So I would look at the rental income as something that would put a hold on our home while we were gone and not necessarily paying INTO the sailing life. Which would then reduce our overall available liquid funds to that grey zone "30-50k" range (selling our 2019 truck, 2015 car, motorcyle, 25ft sailboat, tools, furniture, etc etc etc).

I have been waiting to speak to my wife tonight. I'm thinking we should just tell work we are taking all our vacation upfront, which for her is damn near impossible... and then sail the great lakes with our daughter for a couple weeks and see how it goes. I'm sure we can fit and live on our M33, she lacks tankage for a proper ocean crossing of course, but I think she's a well founded coastal cruiser. I'm also floating the idea of asking for a 1 year leave of absence from work and doing it that way. It just seems hard to line up the stars with a renter, and a leave of absence, and still sell most of our belongings.

If I was single I know what I would do in a heartbeat today lol. Not that I'm wishing I was single of course...

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Re: What did you do with your property before you left for the horizon?

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We sold our house. We closed three weeks ago, and have one week left until we have to be out. We are storing a few things in a cube van since this is a sailing sabbatical, not a rest of our life move. We should have about 100K, and hope to be out for two years. As we are just beginning, I can’t give you too much knowledge from experience. My one caution would be to not overestimate what “stuff” besides real estate is worth. I thought we would make quite a bit of money selling things, but I ended up giving a lot of it away as the pittance people were willing to pay was hardly worth the hassle. If you make the jump, maybe we will see you along the way.
Thanks Ken, congrats on your big move. I hope it works out well for you and yours. I agree that "stuff" isn't worth alot these days. The number I'm quoting is in Canadian funds so immediately hack 30% off it to compare to USD lol. I think 30-50k is a fair range right now because it includes selling our old boat at quite the loss, and also selling our $60k 2019 Ram with only 5000miles on it for what I assume would be a bath as well lol (we didn't finance 60k worth, only about 30k~). Other vehicles and items in the mix there as well.

My scary thought is when it's time to come back. I guess there's family we may be able to move in with until we get jobs and get back on our feet. I also have not taken into account the 15yrs of pensions we have been paying into. I'm sure there is some capital to be had there, or we leave it in those government coffers for now in case we return to jobs in the same field again.

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Re: What did you do with your property before you left for the horizon?

I think it's an easy mathematical solution to your situation. As it's finance & mathematics it falls exactly into the expertise of a local accountant.
I say local because they will know the real estate value, price a tenant would pay, estimated maintenance costs etc. They stick those numbers into some thingy and turn the handle and your answer pops out.

I kept my property and it pays my cruising. My agents are excellent and have tradespeople on hand for problems. Their charges are low, the rents are high and there's a line-up of people wanting to rent it anytime. I have got myself into a great situation.
Any accountant would agree. They would agree because the maths work in my situation.

Go spend $200 on a local accountant who knows your area. Their forumulea will tell you exactly.



Ps don't have storage. Reduce all junk to a shoebox of CD roms and leave it at a relatives house.


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Re: What did you do with your property before you left for the horizon?

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Originally Posted by Guyfromthenorth View Post
Hey Mike, thanks for the reply as always. I am 37 and she is 36, so we are somewhere in the young to middle aged range. Probably about due for a career change as per the "real world" standards. I think you're idea is spot on, and I may explore it more if I start a (I'm sure already overdone) "I wanna leave now, what do I do" thread. We don't have a ton of upfront capital as we run our mortgage as a "one" account (like a giant line of credit) so it shows me as 90k in the hole, but it's really just the remaining house principal. Finding renters would be a pain but would most likely afford the cost of continuing to pay down the mortgage, along with house insurance and incidentals\repairs as needed for the tenants. So I would look at the rental income as something that would put a hold on our home while we were gone and not necessarily paying INTO the sailing life. Which would then reduce our overall available liquid funds to that grey zone "30-50k" range (selling our 2019 truck, 2015 car, motorcyle, 25ft sailboat, tools, furniture, etc etc etc).

I have been waiting to speak to my wife tonight. I'm thinking we should just tell work we are taking all our vacation upfront, which for her is damn near impossible... and then sail the great lakes with our daughter for a couple weeks and see how it goes. I'm sure we can fit and live on our M33, she lacks tankage for a proper ocean crossing of course, but I think she's a well founded coastal cruiser. I'm also floating the idea of asking for a 1 year leave of absence from work and doing it that way. It just seems hard to line up the stars with a renter, and a leave of absence, and still sell most of our belongings.

If I was single I know what I would do in a heartbeat today lol. Not that I'm wishing I was single of course...
Hard to know what the best answer is. Keep the house/sell the house; both options have plusses and minuses. If you do plan to come back to land life within the year or so, then keeping and renting is probably best, but only you (and yours) knows.

I do think itís important to really test out the life over a period of many weeks or months. Living permanently on a boat is not the same as vacationing for a few weeks each year. Iíve been on a M33 ó she feels large for her size. She certainly seems livable to me, but you have two others who have to feel equally comfortable with the watery home.
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Re: What did you do with your property before you left for the horizon?

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Hard to know what the best answer is. Keep the house/sell the house; both options have plusses and minuses. If you do plan to come back to land life within the year or so, then keeping and renting is probably best, but only you (and yours) knows.

I do think itís important to really test out the life over a period of many weeks or months. Living permanently on a boat is not the same as vacationing for a few weeks each year. Iíve been on a M33 ó she feels large for her size. She certainly seems livable to me, but you have two others who have to feel equally comfortable with the watery home.
I know my wife is good with it, the little one doesn't have much of an opinion currently (a real one anyways..she'll tell you all kinds of opinions and they change with the wind). Already started selling some tools online, sold my press and going to dump some winter tires next. Whether I go or not I need to lighten my earthly possessions so at least I feel like I'm doing something towards my goal.
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Re: What did you do with your property before you left for the horizon?

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I think it's an easy mathematical solution to your situation. As it's finance & mathematics it falls exactly into the expertise of a local accountant.
I say local because they will know the real estate value, price a tenant would pay, estimated maintenance costs etc. They stick those numbers into some thingy and turn the handle and your answer pops out.

I kept my property and it pays my cruising. My agents are excellent and have tradespeople on hand for problems. Their charges are low, the rents are high and there's a line-up of people wanting to rent it anytime. I have got myself into a great situation.
Any accountant would agree. They would agree because the maths work in my situation.

Go spend $200 on a local accountant who knows your area. Their forumulea will tell you exactly.



Ps don't have storage. Reduce all junk to a shoebox of CD roms and leave it at a relatives house.


Mark
Thanks Mark, your advice always piques my interest lol. Unfortunately no accountants around here, although there is one shady realtor who prowls. I'm leaning more and more towards sell my dream house and try for the dream itself. Only because I live rural, no buses, no taxis, no way to walk to work. If I go and I only rent my house I won't have the capital to fund my trip unless I sell my vehicles and all my other possessions too, which means I'd be just as screwed coming home as I would be if I just sold my place regardless.

Still looking for real world experiences with selling Vs. renting though from anyone who has done so. I like the shoebox of CD-roms idea, the great news is MicroSD's are dirt cheap these days. Let's shrink down to a cigarette pack and call it even.

Some youtube videos, nothing fancy


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Re: What did you do with your property before you left for the horizon?

Keep the property in case one of the three of you gets sick god forbid. Going all in couples with the Nevada mentality.


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