Saturday, January 03, 2009

Home Sweet Home

I was just looking at my mortgage statement which reflected my January payment. A few years ago we refinanced from a 30-year mortgage to a 15-year mortgage and I barely noticed a change in our monthly payment. We probably have about 8 or 9 years remaining on this mortgage which is not bad, especially considering what many people are struggling with these days.

I got out my calculator and did a quick check to see what it would take to get the house paid off even sooner. For an extra $600 per month we could have this house paid off in 2014. So I'm going to give this a shot. I have added that amount to my February payment and I'll do a catch-up payment to cover January. I want this to be a reality. We have no car payments or any other large required outlays each month other than living expenses. The cars can be driven until the wheels fall off.

In fact, if I pinch my pennies, send my income tax refunds to the mortgage company each year, as well as sending any dividend checks or other gifts received, I think I can do this sooner. My goal is December 2013. That's quite a hefty goal, but even if I fall short by 2 or 3 months, that's still just a few weeks and then we are mortgage free!

That's one way of giving yourself a raise.

Assuming I can recoup my stock losses at some point, even 3 or 4 years down the road, those can be sold off and paid on the mortgage as well. I could also eliminate my current 401k contributions if necessary and divert those to the mortgage. It's not like I'm gaining any ground there. Losing, actually. And what's the point of having money sitting in a savings account drawing 1% interest?

Now that's a New Year resolution I can get excited about.

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