By John Benedict
World economies, nations, and political systems are still feeling the reverberating effects of the coronavirus pandemic. And it turns out that many of us are experiencing our own reverberations as well. Although we didn’t know it at the time, the initial lockdowns in March of 2020 have now resulted in J2 Capital Management’s decision to open a second office in Cape Coral, Florida.
Below, I share the story of how my family and I came to this decision. This move not only provides new opportunities to help more people pursue a fulfilling retirement, but it has also made us think more seriously about our own long-term future and where we see ourselves retiring.
Coming out of the pandemic of 2020, a buying surge of vacation homes is now occurring. There are two main reasons for this buying surge. First, with many employers giving employees the option to work remotely, purchasing a vacation home to work near the beach or ocean is a popular choice. Second, there are those that see the worrisome signs of inflation and are buying 2nd homes and vacation properties as an inflation hedge.
Why Cape Coral?
During the first COVID-19 lockdown in March of last year, my wife and I discussed renting a home in Cape Coral. If we were going to be stuck at home, why not do it in a pleasant climate near the ocean? We had never actually visited Cape Coral before, but it had always been on our radar as a possible vacation destination we could enjoy with our kids.
Unfortunately, those plans to rent a home didn’t come to fruition like we thought they would, as there were too many unknowns during that time. We weren’t sure if the state of Florida would cancel renters or if we were even allowed to travel (come to find out, we weren’t).
As the lockdowns were lifted in the summer, we still didn’t take action because we knew another lockdown could happen at any time again in the fall. But the moment that next lockdown was announced, my wife and I had a plan to immediately book a home for our family.
What We Fell in Love With
Even though we had never been to Cape Coral, I’m an avid boater who grew up boating with my father. He had lived on the Clinton River in Harrison Township, and my wife’s family lives off of a canal in Northern Michigan. I did a lot of reading about Cape Coral, and with their 400 miles of canals, emphasis on boating, and Midwestern feel, it seemed like a natural place for us to visit.
Long story short, we arrived in Cape Coral with two other families in late November last year. We rented a beautiful home on a canal, complete with a screened-in pool and spa. It didn’t take long for my wife and I to feel at home. We quickly fell in love with the scenery and atmosphere.
Our Decision To Open A Cape Coral Office
Within the first day that we arrived, we remarked how this could be a place we could retire. Cape Coral reminded both of us of being back at our parents’ homes. And on that first day, I experienced a serendipitous moment when the garbage needed to go out (I know, bear with me).
As I was taking out the garbage, I happened to be outside at the same time as my neighbor. Being a chatty person, I introduced myself and met Brian. Brian introduced himself as a real estate agent. We got to chatting about the area, home pricing, and the general feel of the city. Suffice it to say, we spent the next few mornings looking at homes for sale but didn’t find anything that excited us in our price range.
However, soon my wife came across a canal lot for sale during her morning walk. The timing and location were perfect. The idea of buying a lot now and building according to our own timetable when we were ready seemed like a great plan. We closed on our property at the beginning of the year and are now looking forward to building our retirement home.
Shortly after closing on our lot, I decided it would make sense to open our second J2 Capital Management branch in Cape Coral. We now have office space right in downtown Cape Coral, and I am making my way down to Cape Coral about every three to four months to meet with new clients and network with other professionals. I believe our firm’s Midwestern values align perfectly with Cape Coral’s Midwestern feel, and we are excited to serve a whole new client base that can benefit from our assistance.
What This Means for J2 Capital Management
What we and the rest of the world figured out in the past 15 months is that work can be efficiently done from anywhere. My role as a portfolio manager does not require me to be in any specific office. With a laptop and internet connection, I can keep tabs on the market and our strategies from anywhere. Not only will I be able to continue to service our Michigan clients in the same way, but now I can also focus on building out our Cape Coral office.
My partner John Salomon CPA, CFP has been working with us to make sure this fits in our financial plan utilizing the same financial planning tools, we offer to clients. J2 Capital has a suite of online planning tools that makes it easy to follow and track any goal whether it’s a retirement plan or budgeting for a 2nd home.
If you are a Cape Coral, Michigan resident, or someone who needs help planning and strategizing for retirement, we would love to meet you. I invite you to schedule a meeting online or reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 248-641-4444 to see how we can help.
1222 SE 47th St., Office Suite C 1Cape Coral, Fl 339041301 W. Long Lake Rd, Suite 260
Troy, MI 48098
About John Benedict
John Benedict is CEO, investment advisor representative, and portfolio manager at J2 Capital Management, a boutique financial advisory firm specializing in in-house custom financial planning, tax, estate, and investment management. With over 20 years of experience, John is passionate about helping clients navigate uncertain markets, reduce risk, and plan for a sound future. John combined his talents and passion in statistics and technical analysis to create J2’s tactical strategies, managing them since the beginning of the organization. He is known for being a visionary and continually looking for ways to improve J2’s services and strategies to better serve his clients. John graduated from Central Michigan University with a degree in business administration and finance, and his thoughts on markets and technical analysis have appeared in The Wall Street Journal, Investment News, and on Moneyshow.com. He was also a contributor to the book The StockTwits Edge: 40 Actionable Trade Set-Ups from Real Market Pros.
When he’s not working, you can find John boating or participating in water sports and spending time with his wife, Janine, and his three children, Jack, Alexis, and Saraphina. To learn more about John, connect with him on LinkedIn.