So far, so good

Travis Shanna wedding 005-A


Well, so far so good.  Our tenant has turned out to be a good one.  He is a mature adult, has a secure job with the federal government, pays his rent on time, and is quiet.  He works full time during the week and plays golf on the weekend.  Who could ask for a better tenant?

As for us, we don’t miss the master bedroom and bathroom, which are sealed off from the rest of the house.  Even with Lisa home for vacation, we don’t get in each other’s way.

People ask us how we manage to live in expensive Hawaii as retirees on a fixed income.  The answer is we have a budget, which we adhere to as much as possible.  We try to live on income (Social Security and rental income) and not touch our savings.

We have no debts.  No car loan, no credit card debt, no taxes due, nothing.  We pay our bills in full every month.  It helps to be married to an accountant, as he knows how to manage our money.

We have decided not to renew our opera tickets and pay per view football subscription next season, because we aren’t interested in what is being offered.  But, we are renewing our subscription tickets for the Hawaii Symphony, because we enjoy symphonic music so much.

Two things are staring us in the face, though:

  1. Knee replacement surgery for David, who has an appointment with his surgeon on July 8. If approved, the surgery will take place in September, after my 50th high school class reunion.
  2. Our trip to Nevada next year to see Lisa graduate with a doctorate in physical therapy. We might extend our trip by seeing the Grand Canyon in Arizona and visiting with our cousin, Bill, in Colorado.

How much will David’s surgery and our trip to the Southwest cost?  Whatever the cost, that’s when our savings will kick in.  Fortunately, we have enough saved.

24 Responses to “So far, so good”

  1. DeniseinVA Says:

    This is a great post and having retired not so long ago ourselves, I am taking lots of notes.

    We are back from Europe. This has been our major expense for us having been gone for a month visiting France, England and Norway and now it’s time to get down to some serious budgeting. It was marvelous and I will be sharing photos of our adventures in the weeks ahead, and hoping to get some pictures up on the blog later today. Yesterday we woke up in Oslo, Norway and slept in our own beds last night. Great to be home no matter how good a time we had.

  2. Christine Says:

    I have heard good things about knee surgery, is it both knees?

  3. DJan Says:

    I’m so glad to hear your tenant is working out so well. And that David is going ahead with the knee surgery.

  4. Olga Says:

    You are wise to live within your means and save for occasional splurge.

  5. Jeanie Says:

    It is good to hear that you are happy with your tenant….it sounds like a good situation for him and for you. I think David will be very happy once the knee surgery is done.

  6. Joanne Says:

    My friend had a knee replacement. There was a lot of physical therapy involved, before and after, and it’s been a big success.

  7. SchmidleysScribbling Says:

    We still have some payments due each month including insurance premiums. We manage fairly well. I never worry about medical expenses, totally covered via insurance.

    Check out my daughters blog (heart tugs and soul musings – Bella). You might enjoy it. Unlike me, she is an English major and a creative writer.

  8. Lady Lilith Says:

    I am so glad to hear you have a nice tenant. I have a friend who just took in a really bad tenant and he is making everyone miserable.

  9. Tom Sightings Says:

    So there’s the mistake I made … I should’ve married an accountant!

  10. Grannymar Says:

    Glad to hear the tenant is working out so well.

  11. Dwight Says:

    Knee surgery seems to be hit or miss where I live. My boss ok, a co-worker missed a year at work and had to get a liver transplant (two knees and complications). On a happier note, how does Edward Snowden enjoy the accommodations? 😉

  12. Beatrice P. Boyd Says:

    Seems like you have so many good things going for you. Hopefully, the knee surgery will onky make David feel better and the trip should not be missed along with the side trips as well.

  13. Linda Reeder Says:

    I’m glad the tenant is working out. Being debt free is the secret to a happy retirement. That and good insurance.

  14. Cathy Says:

    I get annoyed when people ask me how (like you) we manage such a good lifestyle on a fixed income. My answer is the same as yours – budget. If more Is going out than comes in you will definitely have problems.
    I’m sure David will cope with his replacement surgery – from what you have been saying he seems to have done lots of preparation, mentally as well as physically.
    You definitely seem to have struck lucky with your tenant.

  15. L...w Says:

    It has dawned on me that people in the future don’t need much physical space being that they are in cyber space half the time! Perfect amount of space for the cyber connected.

  16. LizKauai Says:

    Hi gigi! I was thinking of you so logged in. I am also faced with retirement so I was going to ask you about reverse mortgage experience too!

    • gigihawaii Says:

      Hi Liz,

      Reverse mortgage is great for people who intend to live in their home until they die. You don’t have to pay a cent while living there. After you die, your heirs will sell your house, pay back the bank, and keep the profit.

      You should call a bank and ask to speak to their reverse mortgage specialist. For our reverse, we contacted Central Pacific Bank in Honolulu in 2011. We have no regrets.

  17. LizKauai Says:

    OK, Thanks, gigi! I may have to consider that option as I seem to be heading that way and none of my kids seem to want the house. 😉

  18. dkzody Says:

    So glad you found just the right tenant. He probably loves the accommodations. With Medicare and insurance, your husband’s knee surgery should pretty much be covered. I have been amazed to hear the small amounts my friends have had to pay for their replacement parts. When Terry turned 62, his military retirement kicked in and also military health insurance. When he turned 65 I was also covered. So now I have the school district and military, however, I have set up the school district with a very high deductible so I can pay a smaller amount each month. Health insurance is quite the conundrum in retirement.

  19. granny annie Says:

    Where have I been? I’ve missed a few of your posts. I think we all are worrying about money these days. At least you have an accountant to keep you on the right path:)

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