Should you pay off your mortgage? I think most people should.
Today I’m talking about mortgages, paying them off and what I consider to be a load of crap pushed on home buyers by the lenders of America, accountants and YES the real estate brokers.
I’ve never understood why everyone says “oh you have to have a mortgage because you get the tax write off.”
I say BS. Wouldn’t it be better to have a paid for house with no interest payment and just pay the tax?
Here’s my way of thinking and no it didn’t originate from me. I was raised by two depression era grandparents that were basically in a steady savings cycle preparing for the next GREAT DEPRESSION.
(BELOW-I may be off a little but I hope you are getting the picture. I’m going off memory as I did not go into the basement and dig out my tax returns to write this post.)
Two years ago I remember looking at my year end taxes and seeing that my wife and I had paid around $14,000 in interest to the bank over the year. I also noticed that my WONDERFUL tax deduction was around $2,400.
So basically I have to pay a bank ~ $14,000 in interest to keep from sending the government $2,400. Is this the Great American Home Tax Deduction everyone says is so wonderful? Not to mention over the life of these mortgage loans you pay hundreds of thousands in interest to get in my opinion “NOT MUCH” in the way of a deduction.
It looks like a load of goods the banks & government put together to make us feel batter about all the interest the banks charge us.
Personally I think I would rather send the government their tax and just keep all my interest. Besides living in a paid for house has got to be a GREAT FEELING. Think about it. You are recession proof. If you lost your job you could easily go work at an hourly job and make the yearly tax and insurance payments. Hopefully it would only be temporary..right?
I talked to my accountant about ways to payoff our house and told him that over our lifetime it would save my wife and I nearly $200,000 in interest. He told me “oh, well if you do that you won’t get your deduction.” I explained my theory to him and he still tried to tell me I needed this deduction. When I asked repeatedly why I have to have this deduction he couldn’t give me a real answer. He like so many others in the country have been brainwashed into thinking that we MUST have our deduction. Again BS.
Pay your house off and live like a Prince or Princess and have your income to save, invest and SPEND as you wish. Can you imagine that?
The other side is my investment adviser. He says “Steve you need to be putting money away for retirement.” Well, we are still saving. He says all that money in the house could be earning more money in the market. REALLY. Have you seen the market? I don’t know about you but a few more of these every 10 year implosions and I’m done with “the market.” I have highly paid professionals begging for alternatives to the stock market. They all love real estate right now. YEAH.
If you have your house paid for at an early age and have the remaining years of your working life to save, invest and actually enjoy a paid for vacation how would that feel? I think it would feel pretty damn good wouldn’t it.
No matter how you do it I think paying off your home as quickly as possible is the best way to go. Here is a recent article to help prove that it isn’t just me thinking this way. A lot of Americans are starting to see the benefits of being free from all debt and especially the home mortgage.
I think this guy, Dave Ramsey, has a lot going on in his debt free classes. A few years ago my wife and I went to his Financial Freedom class in Colorado Springs. We were basically on his program without knowing it. His word is true and if you stick with it you too will live like no one else so you can then live like no one else. Think about it. If you live frugally for several years to payoff all your debt it will allow you to live the rest of your life debt free. Plus along the way you will learn tricks (personal self control) that you apply once you become debt free that will save you money after you become debt free. In our society putting off our instant gratification so we could possibly live a better and more financially rewarding life in the future is a TOUGH sell.
I’m sure there are people out there that have different circumstances, needs and investment goals so this may not apply. But I believe for the average middle class person/family this is a viable option and should be explored. Just a few years ago talking about this to friends and clients was a dead end and they all thought I was a crazy person but now they seem to be coming out of the wood work to share their new goals of paying off their house.
Steven Beam is a CRS Realtor in Parker, Colorado. See client testimonials.
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