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I have to disagree with some of that article. We're paying the minimum on a low-interest mortgage and investing the difference, and we're well ahead of where we'd be if we'd thrown everything at the mortgage. As he said in the article, mathematically it is correct.


My husband and I paid off my mortgage, which was the last of any of our debt, three years ago. We consolidated households a few years before that and much of the payoff came from proceeds from the sale of DH's house. (We had had a commuter marriage; long story, go look in previous posts on the Credit Card and Consumer Debt board if you want the whole thing.)

Though it is correct that we could have had better returns had we invested the money instead, the real impact on our daily lives has been immense. There is much more disposable income now than there was. It goes toward investing, yes. However, that one change meant that, in essence, we were suddenly at financial independence based only on passive income, not on withdrawal of any investment funds. I am fully confident that when one or both of us get to actual retirement age, our pensions (we are federal employees), retirement savings, and investments will lead to being able to live well and still pass a nest egg to the people we care about.

It has changed my mindset dramatically. I suddenly feel much more able to use funds to help others than I ever did before. I also have the slack to do things that I really wanted to do. Some examples of that? We got a housekeeper, started piano lessons, paid for a nutrition coaching program for us both (100+ pounds lost between us!), I became a nutrition coach myself, and we established a small charitable fund to help with reducing obesity, improving nutrition, and reducing food insecurity in my home town and my husband's home town. (Home counties, actually.)

Without the elimination of the mortgage, I'm not sure that either of us would have been comfortable doing the first few of these things, which snowballed to the rest. Your mileage will surely vary. For me, though, it was a worthwhile change.

ThyPeace, yep, snowballs work for more things than just debt payoff. It's cool how that works. :)
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