I'm 74 years old and my wife and I would like to retire full time to a place that is warm all year round (over 60 degrees in winter during the day), has a liberal attitude, and is on the east coast and on the ocean.
We are currently spending six months on Fire Island, two months in Brooklyn and four months in Florida. We went to Jensen Beach, but it's not exactly liberal.
We are tired of moving and want a permanent place. If we sell our space on Fire Island, we'd like to buy something for around $ 400,000.
What do you think?
Left-wing politics can be a difficult task in the south. Even in Florida.
A look at the 2020 Florida election results shows that your options on the beach are pretty limited: the Jacksonville area, the three counties in the southeast corner (Palm Beach, Broward, and Miami-Dade), and on the Gulf side, Tampa-St . Petersburg area. Look deeper, however, and it's not always that simple. For example, the mayor of Jacksonville is a Republican and his beach communities are represented in Congress by a Republican.
Readers may point out some blue shoreline areas surrounded by red, but the bottom line is you may have to compromise.
I won't even encounter hurricane threats and rising sea levels from climate change. As I am sure you know, there are additional costs for insurance against flood and wind damage.
Ocean spots aren't cheap, so you may have to search hard for a $ 400,000 ocean view spot. But near the beach is doable. Don't forget to consider any HOA fees.
Here are three suggestions to get you started.
Pineapple Grove is Delray Beach's arts district.
Courtesy The Palm Beaches
Delray Beach, Florida
Located between Boca Raton and Palm Beach, this walkable town of 70,000 people attracted writers and artists a century ago and continues to have an artistic vibe. The Cornell Art Museum displays contemporary art and the Spady Cultural Heritage Museum is dedicated to discovering, collecting, and sharing the African-American history and heritage of Palm Beach County.
There is also the Morikami Museum and the Japanese Gardens. Shade and bird watching can be found at the 25 acre Delray Oaks Conservation Area (part of the Great Florida Bird and Wildlife Trail).
Winter highs averaged 90 degrees in the mid 1970s and summer highs. Just over a quarter of the city's residents are 65 years or older.
Based on Realtor.com's mid list prices (owned by MarketWatch of News Corp.), you should be able to find a townhouse or condo in your price range. A single family home becomes more difficult. Here's what's for sale right now.
The Art Deco District of Miami Beach is the largest Art Deco district in the world.
AFP via Getty Images
The 2020 elections showed us that the Miami area may not be as left-wing as people thought. However, if you want a more urban setting right on the beach, this 91,000-inhabitant town might be an option.
Miami Beach is more than South Beach, shopping and dining. Stroll past the many Art Deco buildings or book a tour with the Miami Design Preservation League. Stroll the Miami Beach Walk, a path that runs along the east side, mostly right on the beach.
Of course, Miami is only a bridge away with its own museums and other cultural events. Or head to the coral reefs of Biscayne National Park and the wildlife of Everglades National Park.
You'll have the warmth: average winter highs in the mid-70s and summer highs in the mid-80s. It will be damp, but I think you know that.
Given your budget, you would likely live in a condo. According to Realtor.com, the following are currently on the market in Miami Beach
The view from the pier in Tybee Island.
I'd love to say Tybee Island, but honestly, for $ 400,000, that probably means a Savannah address. However, that doesn't necessarily mean in the heart of the city. see Wilmington Island for example between downtown and Tybee.
Charming Savannah, home to 145,000 people and big city cultural venues, is blue and the beach – Tybee Island – is less than 20 minutes away. It landed in sixth place on Livability's list of Best Affordable Places to Live in for 2018.
Tybee has only 3,000 residents and the mayor is elected in a non-partisan race. There are plenty of great beach lists out there, including Dr. Beach in 2017 and # 3 among Southern Living readers in 2020. I can understand why you might not want to rule this out, and you may be able to find an apartment in your price range.
This is my pick when you're ready to look beyond Florida so the winter weather may require compromises. The average winter highs in Savannah are in the low 60s; The average lows fall in the low 40s. It's going to be in the low 90s in summer, so you might want an ocean breeze right away.
Here's what's currently on the market on Tybee Island and Savannah. Also take advantage of the offers on Realtor.com.
Reader, where should Rick and his wife retire? Leave your suggestion in the comment section.
More information on retirement: I want to buy a home in a warm place near the beach for $ 350,000 – where should I retire?
Also: My husband wants to be by the ocean, but I've lived through Katrina and loved lakes – where can we (half) retreat and rent for $ 2,000 a month?
Plus: I'm looking for a conservative small town with a bookstore, low taxes and a ski area within an hour's drive – where should I retreat?
After all: "Work and a few vacations a year are all we've done for the past 34 years" – this couple has $ 2.6 million and no idea where to retire