I’ve been digging through my archives to create a start page of sorts to help new readers and old friends find some of my older stuff. In doing so, I’ve come across (a lot) of posts that have made me cringe in one way or another.
One post, you might recall if you’ve been with this blog for awhile, was about my fantasy for owning a house outright by my 30th birthday.
Well, I just celebrated my 26th. A lot has changed in my life since I wrote that post in January 2008. I became a mom of two children. We paid off some debt and built a bit of savings. Et cetera.
Part of me is rereading that post and thinking how naive I was to think we could acheive such a thing in such a short amount of time, but the other part of me is saying to not be so hard on myself.
We’re still on a good path. We’ve ticked off nearly all of the items on my prerequisite list — building our emergency fund and building our down payment. We’re aiming for a shorter term mortgage and even if we do go with a 30-year, we’ll pay that beast off fast.
My reasons for wanting to pay the house off ASAP back then are the same as today, perhaps even more so. If we shake our mortgage payment, that frees up a lot of cash flow for funding other projects, such as the kids’ college funds. We’ll save a lot of money in interest.
But if we get a mortgage soon and rates are about where they are now, it might not be as big of a deal for us to pay it off as soon as we can. We should still accelerate our payoff, but maybe not to the extreme.
I don’t even know that we could pay it off within four years without cutting back in every way and even then, our income may not be able to support that. I don’t want to make extreme sacrifices for four years for such an arbitrary goal.
We want to continue on with the baby steps of putting money aside for college. We want to be able to spend money here and there on things that are important to us. Unless our situation dramatically changes, I don’t think we can pay off a mortgage that quickly.
I still think we should aim for paying it off in less than 15 years. Once we find out how much our payment will actually be, and get used to it for a little while on our new budget, then we should be able to accelerate the payoff somewhat.
All that to say, I don’t think I’ll be able to meet our original goal of having a paid-for house by the time I’m 30. But by age 40? Yes.
Let’s do it.