Plan B

mom 98 birthday 002-A

Orchid plant at Kahala Nui, a retirement home in Honolulu, Hawaii.

I was thinking of how we should never depend on a possible inheritance or on charity.  I believe in going out and making our own money.

When David and I were both working, we were able to buy and own two condominiums in Honolulu.  One we lived in, and the other we rented out for $850 per month.  This was back in the 1980s.  The resident manager screened applicants for our rental and chose a married military couple as our tenants.  Military tenants are ideal, because if they don’t pay their rent, their superiors will sanction them.  This couple always appeared at our doorstep on the first of every month to give us a cashier’s check for $850.

In 1991, we sold both condos and purchased our present house a few miles away.  I adore this house, because it keeps giving and giving and giving.  When David needed a $25,000 full mouth reconstruction, we applied for a home equity loan.  When he got demoted and his pay was cut, we applied for a reverse mortgage.  In the future, when he retires as an accountant, we will transform our master bedroom into a studio (it already has a separate entrance) and rent it out.  This will augment our savings, so that we will never run out of cash.  My worst nightmare is that we will out-live our savings.

Hence, we have two plans.  Plan A is to maintain the status quo (David employed as an accountant).  Plan B is to become landlords (David retired as an accountant).  We will live very well, implementing either plan.

I think everyone should have a Plan B, don’t you?

16 Responses to “Plan B”

  1. Olga Says:

    You are far ahead of me. I am still trying to formulate a plan A.
    Well, a new plan A for myself alone.

  2. SchmidleysScribbling Says:

    Plan B must not include your kids. They have a lot on their plates! I kept the Condo I owned for years after David and I married. Although it was almost paid for, I sold it just before the last housing crash. The market out there in FF County took many hits, and the condo had drawbacks, like stairs and no washer and dryer in the unit. Both would be an annoyance to an older person. However, the beautiful trees and grounds surrounded the buildings, and the condo association was dog friendly.

    Fortunately the house we own in Arlington has kept its value. Location, location, location they say. The owner of our house before we bought it was an Aide to Senator Percy, and had a ten minute commute to Capitol Hill. The cost of living is so high around here, the survivor David or me, will probably have to sell up and buy a Condo, although they are pricey!

  3. Joanne Says:

    Actually, I was progressing beautifully with my Plans A & B. Then my daughter abdicated responsibility for all but herself; I acquired three grandchildren. I’m still working out Plan C, which seems to be about working for the rest of my life. They are very nice children.

  4. Grannymar Says:

    I would add a Plan C : What to do if/when one of you flaps your wings. I am approaching the sixteenth anniversary of losing my soul mate. The cost of living has gone through the roof in that time and the income is only half (my half) of what it was back then. With age, come health issues and they can be very costly.

  5. Denise Says:

    Sounds like a great plan Gigi.

  6. Suzanne Says:

    I am still trying to nail down Plan A. I have not reached a good confidence level with that one.

  7. Jeanie Says:

    The biggest unknown for older people these days seems to be healthcare costs, but all we can do is plan the best we can which it sounds like you have done.

  8. Cathy Says:

    We also have been down the investment road and have now sold/cashed them in to provide superanuation investments that provide us with a monthly pension.

    There could be a need for a plan C because like some of the others Gigi I would also look toward the time one of you might need extra living assistance that for various reason (mobility/health) the other partne could not provide. Such as looking into other accomodation where help could be provided. You might have to sell this property to fund that move – how does that situation resolve itself with a reverse mortgage. Does the bank allow you to sell the house (that they basically own) and purchase another place using their money?
    Take care

  9. mageb Says:

    Yup, no suicide here, but always a plan B and C.

  10. Linda Reeder Says:

    The best laid plans of mice and men often go astray.
    We do our best.

  11. Beatrice P. Boyd Says:

    I agree that being self sufficient is the best plan. We have saved and have some investments. Also, we do live look for bargains when shopping, buy at thrift stores, cook our own meals when at home. Health care costs are a concern as we age so we make going go the local Y a must as well.

  12. granny annie Says:

    I used to worry but now I don’t. “Worry is a prayer for something you don’t want.”

  13. LC Says:

    My parents emphasized always having a Plan B. I still have some disabilities from a 2011 stroke. Hubby and I are needing to work on a plan C and maybe even Plan D to be sure we are covering various scenarios independent of children. Good for you and David on exercising foresight.

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