Thursday, July 3, 2014

Mortgage Update .... And Other Things

I love my mortgage.  I never ever thought I would type those words.  There was a time when my mortgage was never paid on time, always late, always unaffordable.  That is because I didn't think.  Back then, I didn't think about how much money our old mortgages consumed from our family budget.  I never thought about property taxes, or insurance, or interest.  I just wanted whatever house we were going for at any cost and, boy, did we end up paying the price for my pig headed attitude.

As of right now, I am sitting in a genuine asset.  No matter that it's located out in the middle of the Mojave in scorching heat (today was 105), it is an asset.  People are snapping up the houses that come up for sale in this development very quickly and, if they are posted 'For Rent', they aren't signposted for very long.  Also, I have approximately $200,000 worth of equity and NO desire to borrow against it.  My mortgage has also been paid on time for over 5 years.  Forgive me, but I am proud of myself for that because my bad habits with money have long roots that snake back to my childhood, when my parents could never pay a bill on time.  I grew up with debt collection letters and junky cars.  Our houses were always iffy rentals, all of them badly in need of a renovation.  Things have not changed in that regard because my parents are still living in rental houses that fall down around them.

As one can see from the progress bar on the right, we have paid off over $6000 in principal and we are edging ever upwards to the point of having paid off 10% of the loan.  There has never been a time when we have paid off 10% of a mortgage, pitiful as that sounds.  This is a first.  Oh, by the way, we have saved enough money to pay this mortgage off entirely but that is not something that we want to do.  We want to pay this mortgage down while hanging on to the retirement savings that we have managed to accrue over the past few years.  The spouse wants to pay the house off but I don't think it's wise.  I just don't want to be cash poor.  There is also talk of renting this house out while we shove off from the Mojave and go do something else. We would leave it in the care of a property management company for a 10% fee so that all rent, inspections and repairs will be undertaken during the time it is rented. I am just not ready to part with this house yet.

In other news, the spouse is obsessing about the classic car that was bequeathed to him.  Part of him wants to ship the car here to California so that he can work on it and drive it.  Part of him wants to sell it so that he doesn't have to worry about storage or having a mill stone around his neck in the form of a hobby car overhaul.  I have told him that the decision is his to make.  If he wants to bring the car back here and park it in the garage so that he can work on it piecemeal during retirement, that is his choice.  It would be a great car fixed up.  The spouse talked to a cousin who lives in the same town as the deceased and, if the car is to be sold, the spouse will advertise it on eBay, leave it where it is, have the cousin show prospective buyers the car, and give the cousin 10% of proceeds on sale.

Here's a humdinger.  My son told me last night that he and his wife have run up $25,000 in IVF procedures.  Apparently, she has already been through 3 failed cycles and they have 1 more to go before they use up their $25k.  My son is just a young man and the lady he has married is older than him, in her mid 30s.  I am staying out of this situation.  While it is heartbreaking to want a child so badly and not be able to conceive, I just can't afford to contribute thousands of dollars in the hopes of making it happen.  I know that this is why he shared this information with me, so that I would spring into action and try to help.  Yes, that is what I would've done at one time but now, I have to think of the spouse and his retirement.  IVF or retirement?  I cannot do both.


Donna Freedman said...

Re the IVF: Stand your ground. It's heartbreaking but it's THEIR responsibility, not yours. Do not be swayed by any wails of "but don't you want a GRANDCHILLLLLDDDDDD?"

lewmew said...

What Donna said.

Susie Q said...

+1 more w/Donna. And quite honestly, some people are NOT mean to be parents (DIL???!!!). As bizarre as she is, who knows how long that marriage will last? Last thing they need is a kid, if you ask me! Once he has a kid with her - he's tied to her for LIFE!!!!

Revanche said...

Good job on making progress with the mortgage!

About your son/IVF: Obviously, I agree. Empathy costs nothing and that's about what you can afford at this point if you're to ensure your retirement. If they want a child, they've got to be able to afford to have that child... else how do they propose to also RAISE that child?

Ravi Agarwal said...

We can all relate to you! I also came to the point when I let it go overdue, because sometimes the budget I have is not enough to fulfill my monthly amortization. But what's important now is that you were able to pay off the principal, and that it’s already yours. Cheers!

Ravi Agarwal @ MEDIQ Financial Services

Jeffrey Wallace said...

Hi there, I haven't heard many people tell tell that they love their mortgage so your first line really intrigued me. And I loved your story, it gives out a positive aura, a feeling that how bad the things may seem right now, it can be solved. And I guess your mortgage broker will be happy with you too, he should be.

The Quest said...

Hi Donna! If I had the money to spare, I would not hesitate to give them another $25K to complete another round of IVF. Just throw caution to the winds. But ... if there is one thing I have learned in this life it is this: Don't force the issue and let things turn out the way they are 'supposed' to. Cliches!! There have been many times when I have intervened..... and then wished I hadn't.

@lewmew ~ ;)

@Susie Q ~ I hear ya. See above ;)

@Revanche ~ My son and his wife frequently look at us as a financial safety net. We help when we can but we are doing that far less these days. The spouse's retirement HAS to come first.

@Ravi ~ Yes, we are getting there slowly but surely. It really is a case of Get Rich Slowly and I wish I had figured that out years ago.

@Jeffrey ~ I really do love my mortgage LOL This month we gained another $500+ of equity just by paying the bill.

Chad Nelson said...

That’s a great progress! Regardless if you think you’re late on this “Get Rich Slowly” scheme, what matters is you won’t end up cash poor on your retirement, like you feared. That seems unlikely now that you’re only a few steps from fully paying your remaining mortgage balance. Cheers!

Chad Nelson @ Iron Point Mortgage

Tasha Reeves said...

So, you don’t want to pay the rest of the mortgage yet because you don’t want to be a ‘cash poor’? I see. After all, there might be unforeseen circumstances which you would need that instant cash for. Well, I guess there’s nothing wrong with that scheme, as long as you’re capable of paying your mortgage bills on time. Anyway, good luck with all your plans! Good day!

Tasha Reeves @ WCMTG

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