Happy Friday 7/6/18

Happy Friday! How was your holiday week? Ours was really fun! In fact, our week was so fun that I woke up this morning and realized I never put together today’s post. Ha! Better late then never, I suppose 😉

One big thing we’re working on right now is preparing for the sale of our Ravenna House. That’s right, after 4 1/2 years and a substantial renovation (shown above), we’ll be parting with this old beauty. Honestly, we never thought we’d sell any of our Seattle properties (yes, quite naively), but here’s the deal: taxes and time. Our capital gains exclusion runs out soon and the tax-free equity from Ravenna could be better put into something closer to home. Plus, we’ve been busier than we’d like as of late and we’re hoping that selling a rental will free up time for things we’re more passionate about. Like our kids. And outdoor adventures. And cool, old properties that get our heartbeats going.

But maybe more important than any of that, we just want to keep growing. If that makes sense. Growth is something we didn’t really value when we retired from the traditional workforce two years ago, but it’s definitely something we’ve learned we need. What is it they say,” if you’re not growing, you’re dying,” or something like that. Anyway, we’ll be putting Ravenna on the market next month.

Well it’s Friday again, so I scrounged up lots of great links from the week. Grab a cup of coffee and dig in.

We were interviewed by Rachel of the Minimalist Mom and the article came out this week. It’s aptly titled “Stumbling into Financial Independence through Real Estate Investment and House Hacking.”

Coffee is good for us. Thank goodness!

An interesting read on Mr. Money Mustache’s tiny house. There’s so much to talk about here: our obsession with larger and larger homes, quantity vs. quality, the keys to a happier community, cottage-style communal living, plus the inexpensive construction of a tiny home.

I missed this tour when it originally published, but oh man this loft!

The secret to perfect popcorn is already in your cupboard. We’ve tried the vegan “cheesy” flavor and the carmel corn and I’m pretty sure popcorn is the best snack ever.

The most popular toy at the Farmhouse is this swing. We’ve had it for almost 2 years now and it was worth every penny!

Have a great weekend!

xoxo

-Cathy

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6 Comments

Comments

  1. Heather says:

    Congratulations! That’s a big decision. I think you’ve created a beautiful home for someone which aside from all your successes is a wonderful thing. I agree that at the end of the day, it’s all about planning growth. This will create new opportunities for you and your family and I look forward to reading all about it 🙂

  2. I have no doubt that you’ll get a good return for selling your Ravenna house and put that money into something new that you’re excited about.

    RE: small homes, I just saw a home for sale in Spokane that is 360 sqft with a 360 sqft basement. No one would be able to build that small now due to code restrictions but there are legit tiny homes that still exist in some neighborhoods. I’ve been struggling lately with understanding why we have so many zoning restrictions on our neighborhoods that restrict a diversity of housing from existing together.

    I’ve also wanted to build a small room/shed/living outbuilding for a long time (ever since Ready Made magazine published plans for one. But I don’t need the space for anything right now.

  3. Annalee says:

    Hi there! I loved the article by Rachel, but I’m curious when you started on your journey, were there any books or sources you turned to for information? My husband and I are just beginning to talk about purchasing a second home but don’t quite know where to start. Did you figure it out all on your own? Did you talk to a financial expert first? Thanks in advance!

    • Unfortunately we were pretty clueless when we started on our journey and didn’t know about any resources (maybe there weren’t any back then). I’d suggest checking out Bigger Pockets for all things Real Estate investing!

  4. Cathy I clicked over to the Minimalist Mom and read that article. You mentioned trying to figure out ‘what’ to spend all your new-found time at. I’m a bit older than you, but also still way younger than our historic retirement age and struggling with that myself. I’m self-employed, part-time by choice. Same with my husband. I honestly can’t imagine stopping working, even though I can, because I can’t quite figure out how all my days in a year would be used. I understand everyone’s ‘journey’ is individual, but I would be curious if you had blogs, or podcasts, or books you read on this issue of re-evaluating how to spend your days if you choose non-traditional work. My grandparents were farmers. And when I think about the freedom my grandmother had each day I start to wonder how she spent her hours. But honestly I’ve come to the conclusion ‘they were farmers ! ‘. It wasn’t really that idle or easy. There was always lots to do. I’m not looking to be busy for the sake of being busy though. I have a girlfriend that retired at 52 and it seems to me she traded in fulfilling paid work for frustrating unpaid volunteer work. And I have nothing against volunteer work, but it looks like she’s using it as a filler, and that she doesn’t really get a lot of enjoyment out of it. I have worked part-time for 18 years and still struggle to adjust my mindset so that I don’t feel like I’m wasting the time I’m not working. Because really, most people I know still are working. And my days don’t look like theirs and I feel guilty and wonder if I’m making the most of my very lucky position. I’m looking for some inspiration to read and consider.

    • Thanks for the comment Lisa – it’s had me thinking for a week now! You’re definitely not alone in those feelings. For us, ‘work’ is important to our mental wellbeing and sense of purpose. We have 3 young kids, so that’s a big chunk of our days, but we also have to feel like we’re learning and expanding on a daily basis. Lots of others in the FI/early-retirement community talk about this. A few recommendations: Mr. Money Mustache (you believes in ‘working’ after retirement) and the Choose FI and Bigger Pockets Money podcasts (they interview lots of early retirees).

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