Paid off my mortgage today!
I received my end-of-year bonus today and immediately went to the bank and paid off the remainder of the mortgage (a little over $3000). It was a 10 year loan (refinanced in 2012 from a 30 year) and I had been paying an extra amount each month towards the principal. So I paid it off in a little over five years from the last refi.
So now the only debts I have left are my car loan (and since it's a 0% interest loan, I just pay that each month from my savings account) and my student loan debt. The student loan is a little trickier - I keep thinking about paying it off, but I didn't start paying on it till the year after I graduated from law school at age 51. It's a 30 year loan, which means I'll be 82 by the time I pay it off. I could pay it off early, but since student loan debt is the only debt that goes away when the debtor dies, I figure I'm in a win-win situation. Either I live to be 82 (or more), in which case I pay it off, or I die early (hopefully not) and it goes away. It's only $425/month with an interest rate of 3.25%.
Does that sound rational??? 🙄
Congratulations on paying off your mortgage. Your time frame is amazing. What are you doing to celebrate? (I keep forgetting to celebrate)
Regarding your student loan, I'd probably do what you are doing. Being debt free sounds nice also. If I got some extra money I might throw it at the debt, just be rid of it though.
Whereforart What an incredible achievement! Your story motivates me, as I made similar decisions!
About six years ago, I refinanced my mortgage -- reducing the balance from €262,000 to €209,000 at that time. Since then, I have been paying additional and at this time the remaining balance is a little less than €30,000. My plan is to pay off the mortgage completely in 2018.
I am in a similar age group as you, and although I saved quite a bit in pension funds, my next goal is to save, save, save as much as possible in order to achieve financial independence (in essence, bridging towards the legal pension age in The Netherlands of 67 years and 3 months).
I cannot wait to achieve full mortgage pay-off, but I am wondering now: how are your feelings about complete pay-off? Are you feeling satisfied, or is there perhaps some kind of emptiness because over all these years you had been frantically chucking away the balance and all of a sudden it is done?
Before I forget: I hope you recover from your infection soon. You really should celebrate!
I am finding you inspirational in a few ways. First, congrats on paying off your mortgage. We purchased our home in 2006, which was at the peak of the housing bubble. Essentially, we paid $529K for a house that was worth $385K a few years later, and even now, 11 years later, it's supposedly only worth about $470K. To get the house, we didn't have enough for 20% down, so we put 10% down and financed $475K. We're at $350K now, a long ways away.
Secondly, graduating law school at 51! I keep telling my 41-year-old wife, who has a (useless) liberal arts degree that it's not too late to go back to college for something that pays. She makes $15 an hour part time now doing admin work at a local elementary school. I make about 95% of the income, and it's a burden and a half. I keep telling her that it would be worth investing in a higher paying career through education and she thinks it isn't worth the time or money, especially since we have 3 kids who will go to college, the oldest is a junior now so we're 1.5 years from her starting somewhere.
To answer your question, I would say your are WAY better off putting any extra money into an investment. Even a 6% market return is a net win for you, and that is excluding any tax deductions you would get for your student loans (not sure if the GoP is taking that away too, as part of their new crush the lower/middle class tax plan).
Congrats on paying off your mortgage! That is amazing!
And thank you for being very inspirational about going to school later in life. I'm still a (young) 32, but the thought of going to college at my age is daunting, so thank you for being very motivational that you can get an education or start over at any age.
As far as the student loan debt goes, I guess my only concern with keeping it would be if you faced an illness or unexpected hardship and that $475/month payment could become a burden. As long as you have a solid emergency fund in place and retirement assets, you're likely okay, but the student loan only gives me pause when I think of a very long-term illness that could drain all your savings.