We moved to Alameda in 1973. We reared our children here, Alameda was just what we wanted. We became involved in the schools and the swim centers. The kids participated in sports and community theater. They graduated from Alameda high schools and all went on to college.
We moved to our current home in 1982, a rundown Victorian and spent a lot of dollars and sweat restoring it to its original beauty.
In the early 1990s, we decided to rebuild the uninhabitable second unit. It turned out to be a win-win. Tenants loved the charming cottage (and its below-market rent). We gained new friends, and we had a little extra to pay down the home improvement loan.
When we retired, we made the decision to direct that extra money to shared experiences with our grandchildren.
And that brings us to today. When our last tenant moved to be closer to her place of employment, we made the decision not to actively seek another tenant for the cottage, even though we knew it would have an impact on our grandchildren’s adventures.
One of the basic tenets of financial management for seniors on a fixed income is “Do Not Take Financial Risks!” With required relocation costs and just-cause restrictions looming, we had to face the fact that renting the cottage could become a huge financial risk. We recognized the potential overwhelming financial costs related to evicting a problem tenant.
I am sure there are others like us who will eventually decide that they can’t afford those risks and they will leave the market.
That is when we decided it was time to leave our beloved Alameda. We sold the house and will leave this Sunday. There is excitement for our new adventures, sadness as we leave behind so many positive memories and good friends, and a degree of bitterness at being driven out.
Goodbye, Alameda. For the most part you’ve been so good to us and we to you