Paying Off the Mortgage vs Investing the Difference

You don't own your home until the mortgage is paid off; the bank does. Mortgage payoff tips you can use to become debt-free. Dave Ramsey #wealthyaccountant #daveramsey #mortgagetips #debtfree #mortgagefree #mortgagepayofftipsOne of the most difficult decisions you can make as you struggle toward financial independence is deciding between paying off the mortgage quickly or investing the excess funds instead. The water is more muddy when we see a roaring stock market for as far back as the eye can see coupled with low interest rates. The answer seems simple and obvious: pay off the mortgage as slowly as possible and invest the difference in broad market-based index funds.

You might also think people well past the mile-marker of financial independence would have an even easier choice. Once the risk of a market decline passes due to your excessive net worth, it is tempting to automatically choose the course with the greatest opportunity for maximum gain.

Your favorite accountant has struggles with the same decision: pay it off  or invest. It all came to a head recently when the topic came up on Facebook. I gave my opinion and the fur flew. Before long my inbox was stuffed with requests for a fully fleshed out explanation of my position.

My Struggle

For someone working his entire life in finance this shouldn’t be a problem, you’d think. But it isn’t that simple.

Any first year accounting student knows leverage (debt) can spike returns. Less understood—for reasons I can’t understand—is the effect leverage has when the investment goes down or even treads water. Leverage does enhance profits nicely in a climbing market. When the market goes sideways the interest expense of leverage starts to hurt. In a down market is turns brutal with losses magnified and interest accruing to rub salt in the wound.

When it come to real estate a false sense of security sets in. Unlike securities, real estate doesn’t face a margin call if prices decline. The bank will not borrow you more in such cases, but you don’t have to come up with more money over the regular payment. As long as things eventually turn around you are fine. At least that is the theory.

Should you pay off your mortgage early or invest the difference? Here are mortgage payoff tips to help you decide between investing and paying the mortgage off faster. #wealthyaccountant #mortgage #mortgagetips #mortgagepayofftips #creditscore #DaveRamseyArmed with this information I begin my journey. I bought the farm (No, really! A beautiful 10 acre farm with hiking trails and a pond. What did you think? I died?) in the mid 1990s for $120,000. Five or so years later the mortgage was down to ~$40,000.

My old farmhouse needed serious work. We jacked up the house to secure the foundation, remodeled the original home and made serious additions. The Accountant household went from 950 square feet of living space to over 3,000. (No, I’m not proud of my extravagance.)

The remodeling and additions cost more than $200,000, all put on the credit card, aka, the new mortgage. The Accountant household had a serious debt now.

The good news is that I had no other debt and a net worth approaching eight figures. Our home appraised at $400,000 and change. Borrowing was relatively cheap and there was no real risk to such indebtedness in my situation. I did make payments well beyond the minimum to pay the house off sooner. (Some habits are hard to kill.)

By the time the world ended in 2008 – 09 I had the mortgage down to ~ $100,000, maybe a bit lower. The stock market tanked and I had plenty of room to borrow more against my home.

With my credit the bank was willing to give me pretty much anything I wanted. They needed to lend to low risk people and businesses and I was the lowest of risks. Since I have a farm I qualify for special loans only available to farmers. As luck would have it, I snagged a 2.125% loan fixed for 30 years!

Not being one for half measures I borrowed nearly $300,000, reducing my home equity to the lowest level in my life. I dropped the cash in the market.

It wasn’t a long wait. The market stopped declining and then started rising in fits and starts. For almost 10 years now my gambit has worked well. I made extra payments once again, but not as much as in past times.

Five years ago the mortgage was ~ $300,000. The market turned the borrowed funds into a bigger number. I refused selling the investments. But I increased my payments to reduce the large number on my loan statement. (It bothered me!)

Income from my practice now started going into loan reduction over more market investments. Yes, the market kept climbing, but I wanted that mortgage much lower. I found it disturbing to have the highest debt level in my life when I enjoyed the highest net worth of the same life. Even my business lived debt-free. This house thing, while a good move according to first-year accounting students, occupied my thoughts better used on other projects.

I also turned up the frugal. I learned to cut costs like a crazy man! Coupled with a nice business income I was able to shave $50,000 or more from the mortgage each year. My goal was to reduce the interest expense. Yes, the rate was low, but $300,000 at 2% is still $6,000!

Last year the mortgage collapsed to under $200,000. The race was on. Without resorting to asset sales I refocused my efforts to reduce the mortgage. By the end of last year the mortgage stood a hair into the six figures.

The Final Assault

There are several dry-erase boards around my office. Many are filled with cryptic messages on my personal and business finances. I use a type of shorthand known only to me. Sometimes employees ask what all the gibberish means. I tell them if it’s pertinent to their job.

Here is why you must start paying extra on your mortgage today. Investing the extra mortgage payments instead does not work. Pay off your mortgage in 5 years or less. #wealthyaccountant #savingmoney #personalfinance #moneyA dry-erase board outside my office door has a series of numbers. The cryptic numbers were my madness to retire the farm mortgage. The original goal was to pay $56,800 on the mortgage this year, including interest. (Don’t ask why $56,800; it’s along story.)

As I entered summer it looked as if I could meet my goal. By late summer I met the goal for the entire year. Something snapped in my head when the mortgage hit $58,000 and change. I wanted it gone and now!

In the last two months I drove the mortgage from $58,000 to under $16,000. After I return home from FinCon in Orlando I will move money from a side business to retire the mortgage.

For the first time in my adult life I will be debt free before Halloween. That sounds so insane to me. I can scream “I’m debt-free!” to Dave Ramsey for the first time since the early 1980s while my net worth is well into the eight figures. I kept the mortgage to pad my net worth when the advantages would do absolutely nothing for my lifestyle.

And once again I was forced to reconsider my choice as the course of financially savvy individuals raked me over the coals on Facebook.

Why I Took the Course I Did

When I gave my opinion in a finance group on why I felt paying off the mortgage was better than investing the difference I was mobbed. In a matter of moments there was nothing left but a grease spot  on the pavement.

My argument was simple. Paying off all debt not only reduces risk of default, but frees all the time spent thinking about managing the debt. That was my come to Jesus moment. I discovered I was spending more time thinking about my $300,000 mortgage than the millions I had in investments!

The mortgage was always planned. Payments were on automatic, but extra payments had to be considered. I also kept thinking about how long I wanted to keep this darn thing. Am I willing to keep a mortgage until I’m 70 just to kite the difference I could make in the market? The answer, once I seriously thought about it, was NO!!! And the more I thought about it the more I realized I was wasting quality time on a debt I don’t even need.

The only argument against my solution was that the market does a heck of a lot better than the 2 1/8% I pay on the mortgage. Once I thought about that I realized it was a stupid argument. Yes, it worked well for me since the market has been climbing with barely a hiccup for a decade. What they were really saying is that the ends justify the means. I disagree.

Investing versus extra mortgage payments? It isn't an easy choice. Learn the best choice for you. #wealthyaccountant #mortgage #money #mortgagetips #payments #investments #invest #timeI won because the market was up a lot. How would I look if the market pulled a 1968 to 1982 when the market went nowhere for 14 years? Not nearly as smart, I would gather.

After careful consideration I came to the conclusion (took me long enough considering my age) that paying off the mortgage as fast as possible, regardless of tax deductions or the interest rate, is the only correct course. Here is why: The mortgage is guaranteed while the market is not. The market may climb or it could sink or stagnate. It’s happened for long periods of time. We sometimes forget our history. The mortgage is always there until paid, plus all the interest. No reprieve.

The other expense a mortgage has is time. Even with payments on automatic you still need to manage funds to make the payment. You either earn money or transfer from an investment into the account funds will be drawn from. Don’t forget or there will be penalties!

Time, more than interest or money, were the deciding factor. You might think debt doesn’t take time and allows you to spike your investment returns. Well, it does take time and thought and planning. That time comes from personal time. And debt is a harsh mistress when investments turn south.

I was a Dave Ramsey Endorsed Local Provider (ELP) for years. I have no problem putting every expense I can on the credit card. I pay it in full each month with auto-pay. I also make room for modest mortgage debt. I’ve changed my tune.

I think debt-free is the only way to go. Even if you have massive wealth outside the debt with zero risk to your FI (financial independence) status, it is still better to retire the mortgage on the primary residence, second home and rental properties. (Income properties do very well without mortgages, even in terrible economic times. Hard to lose when there are no monthly payments.)

There is one last thing I noticed as I approach the final payment on my home. Mrs. Accountant and I are giddy as school girls. (I don’t look good in a dress so no ugly comments.) Breaking the million dollar net worth marker didn’t get so much as a “Yippie!” out of Mrs. A. Every time I go to Farm Credit and drop another 10 grand or so she walks on air.

So do I. I must confess I feel a heavy weight lifted off my shoulders. I can’t believe paying off a debt that didn’t even register in the household budget affected my subconscious so much. But it did! It is impossible to understand how much debt affects you until you remove it. How much weight bares down on you until it is removed.

I always thought it was about how much I was worth. No more. I think you are a helluva lot richer without debt than with a massive net worth. I feel better about myself financially now than ever before. I always knew I owed somebody. Now that is gone and I can yell:


I hope you will join me. You can’t believe the colors on this side of the fence.



More Wealth Building Resources

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Medi-Share is a low cost way to manage health care costs. As health insurance premiums continue to sky rocket, there is an alternative preserving the wealth of families all over America. Here is my review of Medi-Share and additional resources to bring health care under control in your household.

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A cost segregation study can save $100,000 for income property owners. Here is my review of how cost segregations studies work and how to get one yourself.

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Keith Taxguy, EA

Keith started his tax practice in 1982 and went full-time in 1989. An enrolled agent (licensed tax professional) since 1992, Keith has focuses on helping businesses and individuals pay the least amount of tax allowed by law.


  1. Kenneth on September 24, 2018 at 7:30 am

    Wow! I love that Mrs. Taxguy didn’t care about your 8 figure net worth, but really got excited as you were paying down your mortgage! Smart lady, now nobody can take your home away from you unless you don’t pay your property taxes. So you better stay on top of that, Keith!

    • Keith Taxguy on September 24, 2018 at 7:52 am

      What! I have to pay my taxes? Oh, the inhumanity, Kenneth. (I wonder if there is a property tax hack I can use. Might be a blog post if there is.)

  2. Doug Paulson on September 24, 2018 at 7:33 am

    Being debt free should be a goal for everybody. I’m not there yet, but trying hard to get there soon. Our society is all about debt, but debt can be very dangerous. If the economy tanks and you have a lot of debt, you risk losing everything. Thanks for sharing another great post Keith!

    • Keith Taxguy on September 24, 2018 at 7:53 am

      You are spot on, Doug. Keep the faith. You’ll get your liabilities eliminated too. Soon, I bet.Your mindset is right.

  3. Blake Bialkowski on September 24, 2018 at 8:20 am

    This line hit me, “Paying off all debt not only reduces risk of default, but frees all the time spent thinking about managing the debt.” I recently had twin boys and when I’m up at all hours of the night I think about what to do with extra cash flow (pay off primary and rental mortgages or invest). We invest pretty well, max out both our 401k’s and Roth IRA’s and throw several grand into a taxable account………..but this article reaffirms my thoughts to pay down our mortgages (primary and rentals) with extra cash flow versus invest. In the long run no mortgage payment on a rental decreases our sequence of return risk and increases our flexibility giving us options for how we can use that money.

    Well written and well thought out, now that my decision is made to pay down mortgages I need something else to think about 2:30 and 5:30am.

    • Keith Taxguy on September 24, 2018 at 8:29 am

      You’ll think of something else in the middle of the night, Blake.

      It amazes me how so many of us reach FI (me included) and still make decisions which require us to spend our most precious commodity, time, on meaningless money issues. How crazy is it to have serious coin in investments while still squandering time thinking about making mortgage payments? It took me 54 years to figure that out, which proves a point: You can teach an old accountant new tricks. I pray you don’t need as many years to learn my lesson.

      • Blake Bialkowski on September 24, 2018 at 10:00 am

        Do you have an order of operations for paying mortgages off?? Primary first, rentals first, highest interest rate first, etc.?

        • Keith Taxguy on September 24, 2018 at 10:43 am

          This only my opinion:

          Pay off primary first for two reasons:

          1.) If something goes wrong you don’t want your primary on the line, and
          2.) Income property interest is all deductible (with certain restrictions), whereas the standard deduction is so high now most will receive no benefit from primary residence interest paid.

          Here is the problem with my advice. The interest rate on the rentals might be higher than the primary residence. This is where good judgement comes in. If only rental properties have a liability, the highest rate gets paid first. (I know Dave Ramsey says to pay the smallest first so mentally you see progress faster. However, we are adults here. I want the best financial choice and the highest rate gets the nod in most instances.

          Your personal facts and circumstances may dictate modification to my opinion. When I work with clients I frequently deviate based on other extenuating circumstances.

  4. planedoc on September 24, 2018 at 9:05 am

    As I mentioned on your last post…I made the decision to end my 3.5% mortgage quickly (paid off in under 2 years) for the simple reason you mentioned.

    No matter what the market does…up, down, or sideways….the mortgage *has* to be fed. Once you are debt-free….if necessary….you can live extraordinarily cheaply.

    It is tremendously freeing.

    • Keith Taxguy on September 24, 2018 at 9:10 am

      Bulls-eye! Without debt you can live “extraordinary cheaply”. Freeing you to live life on your terms. Well said, planedoc.

  5. Art on September 24, 2018 at 10:25 am

    I think guaranteed (the mortgage interest) vs not guaranteed (stock market return) succinctly summarizes the argument. This was my reasoning when I paid off my mortgage. The emotional reward counts for something beyond just the financial accounting, too. Peace-of-mind is the reason some of us pay off our mortgages and own some bonds. Yes, the returns may be forecasted higher putting everything in the stock market, but it is nice to be able to sleep well knowing that if the world collapses at least you have a place to hang your hat. If retired or (semi-retired) bonds allow some emotional support, and the ability to avoid selling stock funds when they are down.

    • Keith Taxguy on September 24, 2018 at 10:45 am

      Yeah, selling into a down market for living expenses is a concern, Art. Some money should always be in short-term vehicles to cover current needs.

  6. Zac on September 24, 2018 at 10:45 am

    While it is freeing, it still is never the most financially savvy decision, especially at 2.25% interest. It’s a relatively straightforward process to monitor (with automation even!) the investments and create an alarm in an emergency case where the investment nears the payoff value of the loan.

  7. Cindy on September 24, 2018 at 11:23 am

    Some folks in the financial sector feel that we all need to squeeze every last monetary drop out of our income and investments. Heck, for me, I’m just happy to be saving and accruing, who can be sure if one method is superior when much of it is a gamble anyway?
    I’ve been living credit card debt free for over 20 years, and recently living entirely debt free and there’s no other feeling like it. Freedom is the best word. No concern for what happens with the economy or my employment – I will survive (barring hyper inflation) WooHoo!!!

  8. ImmigrantFinances on September 24, 2018 at 11:33 am

    Thank you Keith for this post. Coming from you, I’m sure this would influence a lot of those who prefer to invest than pay extra on the mortgage. I emigrated to this country 11 years ago and even though I got sucked into debt, I found Dave Ramsey and his teachings on debt resonated with me a lot b/c that is how it was back in my country. Now I’m on a path to pay off our mortgage in 5 years (2 more years to go) and I’m so laser focused on it that some friends feel I should be investing that extra money. But my thing has been I’m very debt averse. I hate debt with all the fiber in my being. I realize that I may be less rich by going this route, but I’d rather be the tortoise than be the hare and have debt hanging around my neck. Excellent blog post. Keep up the good work!

    • Keith Taxguy on September 24, 2018 at 1:01 pm

      You have good company,IF. Most of the wealthiest people abhor debt and for good reason.

  9. ImmigrantFinances on September 24, 2018 at 12:10 pm

    Thank you so much for this post. I am doing exactly the same thing. It’s not very popular on Bogleheads but I’m very debt averse and I agree it may not be financially superior, but I want to pay off our mortgage in 5 years (2 more years to go). But of course, the extra payments I’m throwing at it is after maxing out all retirement vehicles available to me. Hopefully with your powerful voice, more people will toe this line.

  10. Mark on September 24, 2018 at 2:27 pm

    What’s interesting about this topic in general, is that when folks learn that you don’t have a mortgage, they give you this strange look that there is something wrong with you, almost to the point of alienation. For me it’s simple, at the end of the day – it’s about risk, and mitigating it! Glad to know there are others on the same page as me.

  11. Steve on September 24, 2018 at 9:49 pm

    Keith- as usual great post! I’m at 3.5% mortgage rate, so at my fed and state tax rates, I’d need to earn 5% in a similarly risk-free investment (to net to 3.5% after taxes). No way I’m getting 5% and risk-free in T-bills or savings accounts. I could put in the market or real estate, but that’s far from risk free as you mention. I like the idea from an emotional standpoint (sleep at night factor), and could pay off fairly quickly, but I’m on the fence as right now I have most of my liquid assets ear-marked for getting into real estate investing. Do you think investing in real estate rentals by paying all cash (versus other people’s money) is worth it? To me, real estate rentals are less passive than index funds and as such the return needs to be better (10%+) or provide a more solid income stream (i.e. when market/dividends are down, real estate rental income holds steady, etc)

    • Keith Taxguy on September 25, 2018 at 6:45 am

      I wrote about real estate investing several times, Steve. Here is one I think is worth noting.

      Real estate investing has its risks. Cash offers eliminate a large part of the financial risk. However, when I calculate the quality of the investment I assume a no-money-down deal because I expect my investment to return at least what the bank would get. This helps me decide if the property is worth pursuing.

  12. Andy on September 25, 2018 at 8:52 am

    I think that this can be boiled down to a fairly simple point. For most, the spread between the interest rate on a primary mortgage, and the expected return on equities, does not come close to exceeding the “equity risk premium”. For those wanting to read more, I would review Michael Kitces article on the topic as well. The cynic in me believes, that the common advice to use leverage to invest, is coming from financial planners that would like additional assets to manage. Thanks for the great post!

  13. Jeep on September 25, 2018 at 3:14 pm

    I finally paid off a giant $944k mortgage in October after nine years of relentless over-payment. It was a low-ish rate (<4%) and interest only, meaning I could pay off as much as I liked whenever I liked, and every principal payment reduced the interest immediately. Sometimes I'd make two or three payments a month. As you say Keith, it's a wonderful feeling and my wife was far more enthusiastic about hitting this milestone than our net worth creeping up from a slow and steady 50-60% savings rate.

    I would mention though that it's important to get the balance right – maxing out your tax advantaged accounts first, then choosing the balance that works best for you between paying into taxable accounts etc and paying down the mortgage. This article came too late for me but posits an interest equation :

    • Keith Taxguy on September 25, 2018 at 3:38 pm

      Jeep, I focused on mortgage elimination over retirement plan funding. Of course I used common sense funding tax advantaged accounts first. That is why I didn’t just write a check. I had a reasonable plan and worked it hard. Financial Samurai’s article is an excellent link and worth reading.

      • Chris on June 21, 2020 at 7:45 pm

        Should I max out my Roth 401k and Roth IRA before I start paying down the mortgage?

        • Keith Taxguy on June 21, 2020 at 8:25 pm

          Chris, I always lean toward paying down debt first whenever possible. However, facts and circumstances rule. The mortgage interest rate can be really low in this environment which makes me somewhat less inclined to focus as hard on debt reduction, especially if there is no other debt and the debt to equity ratio is low. Sometimes I prefer to hedge my choice by splitting the amount between paying the mortgage down a little faster while adding a bit more to the retirement account.

          • Chris on June 22, 2020 at 9:09 am

            Currently I am only getting my 8% match in my Roth 401k and doing bi-weekly mortgage payments (3.625% 30yrs fixed, $260k loan) to pay that down a little faster. I just don’t want to end up with a paid off house and not enough retirement (only have $160k in retirement now). I am only 39, so I have a few more years to save and pay off the house. We have no other debt.

          • Chris on June 22, 2020 at 9:59 am

            Thanks Keith. My wife and I are currently getting my 8% match in my Roth 401k and paying Bi-weekly mortgage payments, so I guess we are on track. I am just concerned we won’t have enough when we retire. We have only been able to save $190k and I will be 40 next year.

  14. steve on September 25, 2018 at 9:37 pm

    thanks Keith – great info! I’d settle for a few properties to diversify – I don’t know how you kept up with so many properties.

    • Keith Taxguy on September 26, 2018 at 7:18 am

      There is a reason we use past tense when we talk about my income properties.

  15. ArmyDoc on September 26, 2018 at 3:42 pm

    Love it and agree. I just paid off our mortgage despite all other arguments for exactly the reason you state. And my wife had the same reaction- way happier about no mortgage than she was when we passed various net worth milestones that imply fatFI or later MOFi (morbidly obese financial independence). She loves being debt free as much as I do or more.

  16. Blastmaster on September 26, 2018 at 6:21 pm

    I have been saving money from our Side Business in an online saving account for 4 years now. As I approach my 50th Birthday, the funds are just slightly higher than the balance on my mortgage . No other debt, secure job and solid net worth with other liquid non retirement assets. The interest we pay is negligible and we also deduct a small portion of the interest for business use of our home. The online banking savings account now returns about half of my total mortgage interest cost with the recently rising rates . They say cash is king and parting with this lump sum by paying off the mortgage for my 50th birthday is a bit frightening. but has been a goal of mine for sometime. I am slightly worried about missing opportunity’s that may arise in the market . Of course with no debt at all, I will be able to further ramp up our savings/investment rate and pursue the first rental property purchase. You have convinced me Keith, why mess around with debt at all! Great Post.

  17. MattTheRNMentor on September 27, 2018 at 3:25 pm

    We are actually in the hospital getting ready to deliver our second baby (as I write this, no joke).
    She is going to stop working after she delivers.

    We’ve been paying down the mortgage on a 15 year 2.875% term. Too improve flexibility, we reamoritized the loan for free, and knocked $400 off our required payment. We can continue to pay down at the same aggressive rate, but we don’t have to. This will allow us to sleep better at night while transitioning to one income.

    Thanks for the post!

  18. Mohammed on September 30, 2018 at 11:16 pm

    How would you suggest to day down debt?

    I take it credit cards, student and auto loans go first but after that is investing / paying down debt a binary option or is one best allocating funds to 401, the market and additional debts payments in 33% ratios?

    Or what’s the smartest way to sequence paying down debt?

    • Keith Taxguy on October 1, 2018 at 9:52 am

      Mohammed, stay tuned. I plan an entire re-write of that post with significant new material dealing with your questions.

      I would pay credit cards and other debt before the mortgage with few exceptions.

  19. Jim on October 1, 2018 at 5:54 pm

    Great article!! I caught the same crap from everybody telling me I was crazy to refinance my home loan to a 7 year loan fixed at 2.29 percent, thank you Tongass Federal Credit Union. Sure our payments doubled, but our term reduced from 30 years to 7 and after 7 years we will be debt free! I have a chalkboard at home beside our door with the numbers 4/80, and after making a payment today will be 5/79 to represent our number of completed payments to outstanding payments remaining. But we are taking it one step further, as I have the same obsession with being debt free as you do. Due to a recent job change, we have the ability to withdrawal all of our retirement savings (about 130K before taxes.) We will do this and take all of that money (approximately 95k after taxes) and stick it to our mortgage, effectively cutting our 7 year term in half. Now here is you another topic to write on: does it make sense to clean out your retirement account and take the 10 percent early withdrawal penalty? The answer will always be yes, for the same reason you stated above: In the 4 years we have contributed to the account, we are up over 50%. Thanks to Trump, our highest tax bracket has reduced from 28 to 24%, so now that 10 percent penalty is actually 6 percent compared to doing the same thing last year. My wife also went full time from part time this year, so the excess 95K will still keep us in the 24% tax bracket. Most importantly it is guaranteed like you said above whereas the stock market is not. I am 32, my wife 29. So after the remaining roughly 3 years of paying on the mortgage, we will be able to contribute and max out our 401ks, and IRAs, as well as taxable accounts, where currently we only put in the minimums for matching. I remember those people who lost their homes in 2008-2009 who only a year before had no worry in the world because they had a good job, and money in the bank. A year later they were homeless and bankrupt so to me the guarantee is always the right choice vs the gamble especially when it comes to your home. After the house is paid off, we will only have to come up with 200 dollars a month for taxes, plus regular cost of living such as cable, water and electricity. We also plan to cut back on our work from 40 hours each to 20 hours each so we can save money on child care and spend time with our children. And as a result of Obamacare, our children will be eligible for Medicaid under the expansion program when we reduce our hours, saving us from the possibility of medical bankruptcy due to illnesses of our children while saving us on our premiums.

  20. Ace on October 20, 2018 at 9:29 am

    As a physician, I am a malpractice target in a somewhat risky specialty. Living in a state with unlimited homestead exemption if the property in a city is on one acre or less, I paid off my mortgage to make it creditor-proof (except from the IRS, of course)

    • Keith Taxguy on October 20, 2018 at 9:35 am

      An excellent point, Ace. And one worth noting. The advantages to owning your home free and clear is more than just no mortgage payments.

  21. […] The debate is legend: should I pay off the mortgage faster or invest the extra instead? I recently finished that personal debate permanently. […]

  22. Regaining Motivation When You Have No Debt on November 26, 2018 at 7:00 pm

    […] of debate has also revolved around paying off the mortgage — any debt for that matter — versus plowing the excess payments into investments that pretend to offer a return greater than the interest rate on your debt. While investments can […]

  23. Danielle Fetherson on December 16, 2018 at 2:27 pm

    Keith, when I started reading this post I was prepared to silently debate you on why paying off the mortgage is a higher priority than investing for us right now. I wasn’t prepared for you to make the argument for me and to do it so well!

    My husband and I are $5k away from paying off our mortgage. We have one amazing daughter now, and my requirements before we can work on baby number two are 1) paying off our house, 2) having our daughter potty trained, and 3) me being back down to the weight and fitness level I was pre-baby #1.

    It’s nice to find an accountant who thinks like we do, and I’m curious to read more from your site to learn more about you and your against-the-grain ways!

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