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Do We Sell It All?


It’s funny that Hope just bought a house at the same time I’m seriously considering selling mine. I’m super happy for you Hope!!


My situation is a bit different (aren’t we all?). We have been away from our home, living in our trailer, for more than half the year and the more time we spend on the road, the more we recognize how much we enjoy the nomadic lifestyle. Oh goodness, not permanently! But we really want to see the country and now that COVID numbers are falling, it’s feeling like a more normal place out there.


I’m still job searching but I’m looking into remote possibilities and…


Considering selling our home, selling everything we own, and moving full-time into our trailer.


Am I crazy? Before you answer, here’s our thinking. Again, this wouldn’t be longer than a year or two. When we finish, we want to buy a piece of property in a more rural area in Texas and build a home ourselves (reminder, my husband is a general contractor). We would continue to live in the trailer until the home is finished.


What are our financial thoughts? We would be selling our home in an all-time high market. Seriously, San Diego is ON FIRE. We’d stay out of the market while we travel in hopes it will cool a little (ha ha right?). We would cashflow our travel like we’ve been doing now and would bank what we would have been paying in mortgage payments and utilities for the two years of travel and one year of building. That would equal $90K or more. We’d couple that with the profit we made off our house in San Diego and pay cash for the land and the house we build. We would need to upgrade to a slightly better trailer since ours isn’t made for full-time living (technically no trailer is but some fair better than others).


My fears? We could get out of a hot market and it could continue to increase and we wouldn’t be able to get back in. What if we change our mind and want to stay in California (my husband is FIRM on leaving)? We would be selling everything (nothing we have is worth putting in storage) and what if we wouldn’t be able to replace it all without spending a ton of money?


Will our kids would struggle with life on the road? Sure, they love it now but for another year or two? We talked to them about the idea and they all said they want to continue travelling. We’ve seen more family this year than ever before. We’ve seen some amazing places. But I still wonder if I would be doing the right thing.


But wow, the dream of being absolutely debt free, mortgage and all, is really attractive.


Am I crazy?!?

Huge Inflation of Home Improvement Projects


The Huge Inflation of Home Improvement Projects

With summer just around the corner, my family usually tackles the outdoor home improvement projects this time of year. The garden is planted and yard work divided up among everyone. However, inflation and the price of construction materials are preventing many of our home improvement projects. Unfortunately, we are facing a necessary repair with a price tag I’m not sure we can afford.

The Home Improvement Project

My mom maintains a long honey-do list every year. But, there has been one nagging item topping the list for a few years now. Our deck has been in serious need of repair for about five years. It has withstood the elements for nearly 30 years, so we all agree it’s about time that we gave it the TLC it needs. While most of the framework and joists are in good shape, the actual decking is slowly rotting away. It seems like every time someone goes outside, there is a new board that creaks or another hole that appears. Although it is not in immediate danger of collapsing, it can’t go unattended for much longer.

In the past, my dad might have attempted to do the updates himself. However, health conditions have removed this option. The only way we are going to have it taken care of is to hire a professional.

How Inflation and Shortages are Affecting Home Improvements

After much discussion and consideration, my dad called a local contractor for an estimate three years ago. However, when he saw the final tally, he balked. He thought $5,000 was too much to pay for a job he could do himself. So, he put it off. Now, here we are two years later. We are in a situation where we can’t avoid the problem much longer, but the cost of building materials has skyrocketed. It’s a classic example of how hesitating to make a decision will bite you in the rear. While deck builds and repairs are always costly, the most recent estimate was double the initial bid. What’s worse is that we have called nearly every contractor in the Omaha area, and no one is able to even look at your project until spring. Some even have recordings that give referrals to other companies since they are booked so far into the future.

We are not the only ones experiencing these issues. The rising inflation of building materials is affecting everyone’s home improvement and construction projects. Even large-scale projects have been delayed due to the increase in the cost of steel and wood. And while prices have already hit recent highs, it seems as if it will only continue to go up until supply chains catch up to the demand.


The Reason for Inflation Costs of Home Improvements


Stuck Between a Rock and a Hard Place

So, that brings me to my current position of beings stuck between the metaphorical rock and a hard place. Since it is not my home, it isn’t my decision to make. But, my mom is begging for help after several failed attempts to talk to him. She feels she has waited long enough and wants to be able to use the outdoor space again. While it might not be my place, sometimes I am the only person who can communicate with him about financial matters. My question is: What’s the best way to approach it?

We have a good relationship with the initial contractor who gave us a fair bid. Since we will be able to keep most of the deck’s original structure, we only need to replace the decking and railings. We also found cheaper options for the spindles that save on the final bill. All in all, we are looking to spend $8,000-$10,000 to complete the repairs.

However, my dad has a severe aversion to spending money. His anxiety over spending money has been crippling in the past. And since he makes the final decisions, it is going to be a hard sell. My guess is that he will want to wait a little longer to see if the costs of building materials decline. Unfortunately, I’m not sure that is a gamble we can make.

I find myself in a precarious situation, but want what’s best for everyone. While we could wait one more year, it could be even more expensive later on. Even the professionals say that we shouldn’t wait any longer. What is the fairest way to handle this without stepping on toes?

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