I am literally beside myself! I have been counting down the payments until our mortgage was paid off.
Guess what!? Now is the time!
I haven’t always been amazing with my money. Actually, I kind of had a similar viewpoint as many other things in my life – all or nothing.
I spent the first 25 years of my life only buying the bare necessities. I loathed spending money. I mean, I dreaded it. Do you know, when we were newlyweds, I budgeted and spent $50 on groceries every other week. We ate a lot of pasta.
Then something happened.
I had a baby.
It was a girl.
I’m not even ashamed to say that we left the hospital and went straight to the mall. Who does that?!
That was almost 11 years ago.
If it wasn’t for my amazing husband who keeps me grounded with reality checks, I’d probably be in a terrible position financially.
He has taught me a thing or two about money – and that has helped us pay off our mortgage. We didn’t do anything fancy and we definitely didn’t win the lottery. We just chose to be wise with our financial decisions. None of our decisions caused us to be tight or lack in any way.
Here are some of the things we did to pay off our mortgage faster.
Pay The Mortgage Weekly
This was one of the best decisions we made. If nothing else, do this. Changing your payments to weekly will pay down the principal much faster than if your plan is bi-weekly or monthly. It really does make a difference.
Put A Plan Together
I’m sure everyone who is close to me is probably tired of hearing my payment plan for my mortgage. Especially over the last 2 years, I’ve been a bit obsessive with it. I knew the time frame I wanted to work in, so I made sure that everything lined up payment-wise. As the balance got smaller and smaller, it was easier to nail down an exact date.
I’ll be honest, it’s been quite tempting to upgrade our living arrangements. This booming market can get the best of anyone. I have a dream house that is within reach, but it would require incurring a bigger mortgage. I don’t want that. My house is sufficient. It serves all my needs (not necessarily all my wants). I’ve learned in life that it is much better to be content with what you have than to have the constant stress of ‘keeping up with the Joneses.’
Make Extra Payments
Bear with me, I’m no mortgage specialist, but I do know there are rules you have to follow. If you want to avoid penalties, you have to stay within your payment allowance (I’m sure it’s not called that, but that’s my name for it). All we did was add an extra $30 to each payment. This made another great difference. Although this took a small sacrifice, it really didn’t make a difference in how we spent our money.
All of this was possible because we made smart choices along the way. As Dave Ramsey said, ‘Live like no one else today so you can live like no one else tomorrow.’
Great advice. We didn’t decorate our house immediately. We didn’t drive 2 cars. We didn’t have cable or all the latest gadgets. We didn’t always have internet and cell phones. We didn’t eat out or go on lavish vacations (until recently). We did live within our means. We did enjoy life. We did enjoy each other.
Now, we can sleep soundly in our house knowing that the strain of borrowing money has been lifted.