AFTER the traumatic experience of the first buyer, Andy Hill realized that he did not want to be faced with mortgage debt again.
So when he and his wife Nicole, now 39, bought a new four-room home in 2013 for $ 350,000, they decided to pay off the loan as quickly as possible.
By living on only half of their combined income – known as the 50/50 method – and leading a lean life, the couple managed to cleanse mortgage in just four years.
This meant that Andy and Nicole, who live in Bloomfield, Michigan, with their children Zoe, 9, and Calvin, 7, had accumulated more than $ 35,300 in interest over a 15-year mortgage term.
Andy, founder Marriage, children and money, told The Sun: “I bought my first home in 2004 for the completely wrong reason.
“I made a pretty low down payment, and when I changed jobs, mortgage payments made up about 50% of my money coming in. I couldn’t even get out. “
Things to Consider Before Paying Your Mortgage
BELOW are four things you need to consider before paying off your mortgage.
- Check for a prepayment penalty: If you overpay more than you are allowed and close your mortgage ahead of schedule, be aware that some will charge a fine. The low 2% commission on a $ 150,000 mortgage will still force you to shell out $ 3,000, so it’s best to stick with your agreement.
- Create a reserve fund: While not having a mortgage is a dream come true for many, you will likely no longer receive the cash you use to overpay. If you don’t have any contingency savings, set up a fund for that first.
- Pay off the more expensive debt first: Current mortgage interest rates are low, so if you have other more expensive debt, focus on paying it off before paying the mortgage.
- Think about your future plans: If you are thinking about moving in soon, it may be best not to overpay, as you can save on your next home.
He added: “A few years later, here on the Detroit subway, there was a big Great Recession, and the house I bought for $ 200,000 was suddenly valued at $ 100,000.
“I really felt trapped at home. I had a traumatic experience. “
Below we explain how these duo realized their dream of free mortgage loans years later – and you can do it too.
Take a mortgage for 15 years
When Andy and Nicole found their dream home in 2013, they decided to take out a mortgage for 15 years at 3% instead of the usual 25 or 30 years.
While this meant that their monthly payments were higher at $ 1,900, they saved tens of thousands of dollars in interest.
In addition, every month a large part went to pay off the main debt on the mortgage – this is the amount that you borrow and must return.
The duo made their first mortgage payment in December 2013 and their last in November 2017.
Andy said: “We made a hefty $ 155,000 down payment to be able to pay for the house much faster.
“It was part of my madness that I didn’t want to have a mortgage.”
Reduce your expenses
To get out of debt, most people need to cut their spending or earn extra money, if not both.
Before Andy and Nicole took out a new mortgage, they started living on just one paycheck to get $ 50,000 in student and auto loans.
A year later, they had no debt, but when they took out a mortgage, they decided to continue using this method.
At the time, their total household income was about $ 170,000, with Andy working in sales in the marketing of corporate events and Nicole in the advertising industry.
Their income was higher than the US average, which naturally helped, but if the income was lower, the mortgage loan could be repaid ahead of schedule.
They also continued to use the 50/50 method when Nicole decided to be a housewife.
They also cut back on dining, brought packed lunches to work and canceled overseas vacations.
Andy said, “We had to say no more to family and friends, and what we used to do at the beginning of our marriage.
“It became difficult for both of us because we had things that we wanted to spend and enjoy.
“I say I’m kind of like a savings guy, but I also enjoy spending money on experiences, vacations and being with my family.”
“We didn’t give up on vacation altogether, but we got a little more economical and went on trips to northern Michigan, while tropical vacations became much less.”
Find ways to make extra money
One of the biggest incentives to pay off mortgages was the sale of their old home, which dropped the principal from $ 20,000 to $ 30,000.
To further increase mortgage payments, they also saved bonuses and tax refunds.
Andy said, “We just took all the extra money we had, it was $ 2,000 here, $ 2,000 there.
“We also sold everything in the house that we no longer used, such as children’s toys and baby equipment such as a swing.”
Examples included toys and clothes for $ 20 and $ 30 each, up to $ 500 for a road bike that Andy used for a triathlon.
Nicole also ditched designer wallets, which increased their bank balance by $ 200-500 per bag.
The couple also pretended that Andy, who was paid 26 times a year, only received 24 checks.
The remaining two salaries will go directly to mortgage payments.
During this period, Andy also started his blog and website as a part-time job, but this has now turned into a full-time job.
Make additional payments on your mortgage
The additional income and cost savings allowed the family to set aside a whopping $ 3,000 a month for a mortgage, although the size of the mortgage was different.
They haven’t been fined for overpaying their mortgage, but this is something to double-check if you are thinking about doing the same.
Less than four years later, the family finally felt the “fantastic” feeling of not having a mortgage.
Andy said, “I was so passionate about it that I wanted to find a way to celebrate it.”
To celebrate the occasion, the family created a piñata with some mortgage papers and let the kids break it to “symbolically destroy our mortgage.”
They also burned some mortgage payments in their backyard.
Andy added: “Some people say that paying off your mortgage early is a waste of money because you could make more money in the stock market with these low rates.
“I agree that it can be very wasteful, but it depends on where you are on the road.
“We did both, so we have the opportunity to enjoy a comfortable retirement as well as more enjoyment from life today.
“It gave us emotional as well as financial freedom.”
We collect top tips on how to pay off your mortgage after 10 years.
Married couple says they are going to retire at the age of 50 living half of your salary for a year when you don’t spend money.
Meanwhile, daddy cried after learning that his 24-year-old son paid off his entire mortgage, so he could retire early.