My wife and I get many different reactions from people when we mention our moving to a loft in downtown Springfield. A few are interested because the same thought has crossed their minds. A few are amused because our move seems the trendy thing to do. Still others are perplexed and simply nod.
We were discussing our move yesterday and it occurred to us that while empty-nesters are starting to move into more urban areas, this is not necessarily a trend that has hit southwest Missouri yet. We still qualify as odd. I prefer to say we’re trend-setting example-makers
Another in the long list of reasons to do this: money.
Our rent payment will be a few dollars more than our current mortgage payment without the attendant maintenance expenses (e.g. $8,000 in the last 12 months for sewer and roof repairs). Further, this move will also cut our transportation costs — already lowered by owning one car instead of two. I will continue to walk and drive a bicycle to work (and the Bear Line also comes into play for me now). And we’ll cut out nearly all use of the car to move around downtown — our most frequent destination for entertainment and some shopping.
As it turns out, car-centric planning has cost Americans dearly. One way to get off the congested-traffic rat race is to move close to employment and other frequent destinations.