@agingbabyboomers! Yes, I resemble that remark. RENT vs. OWNING? Perhaps you want to keep your home here in Sonoma County, rent it out and go exploring other areas to live. You could pull some cash out of your home here, rent it to cover the new debt service and then go rent in the south of France for a year? Spain? Way back east in the New England states or perhaps Oregon or even Texas! (remember, Austin is WEIRD!). A $250,000 1st at 5.5% is about $1,419 per month in debt service. You own a home in Rincon Valley, 3 bed, 2 bath, 2000sqft, rents going to be $2400 at least! Throw in social security, retirement and you’re GOOD to go (obviously speak to your accountant and retirement specialist for advice).