After 5 years of aggressive mortgage payoff followed by a windfall that allowed us to payoff our mortgage on our first little home, we’ve had a blissful 4 years of mortgage freedom. It was never going to last. Our plan was always to move, and that was always going to mean another mortgage. In fact, when we bought our first home, we expected we’d be moving in 4 to 5 years. But time often has a habit of rolling by more quickly than you’d like…
Comfort and discomfort
Paying off a mortgage is incredible. It releases a huge chunk of your budget to do with as you wish- spend, save, invest. We did a mix of those things. It gave life a certain comfort and ease. The first year of becoming a parent was the hardest of my life. The thought of doing it again (which we probably will be foolish enough to) fills me with dread. The tiredness. The crying. The realisation that the weird bulk you can feel in your jeans as you walk back from the supermarket is yesterday’s knickers that you took off with the trousers and apparently didn’t put in the wash. The backwards jumpers. Burnt meals and numerous takeaways.
Basically the new born year was hell. I’m so much better with my rambunctious little toddler even though he’s still pretty tiring. But in one way, financially, that year was comfortable. And wow were we lucky that that was the case.
However, the house was increasingly uncomfortable. The layout. The size. The lack of a dishwasher and no space to put one. (I cannot tell you how much I detest washing up. Lock down was a washing up hell.) The toddler unfriendly garden with giant steps, and no where that he could have ride on toys. And knowing that it wouldn’t change without a lot of cash, and that we didn’t want to waste cash somewhere that wasn’t our long term home.
Discomfort and comfort
And so, as lock down measures started to ease, we found the perfect home for us. Already empty, a little bigger but, more importantly, better laid out to use the space as a family. Built in dishwasher! It’s a winner. And we love it. But with it becomes a discomfort we’d forgotten. The discomfort of once again having a mortgage. That large payment that vanishes out of our account monthly and is due to for years to come.
But as you can tell, renewed comfort in our surroundings. A kitchen diner, so I can easily pop meals on the table and we can all eat together without needing to scoot through the living room to the dining room (or guiltily sit with trays on our laps as it was easier). A better garden (with some toddler proofing required), with no cats to catch little wild birds. A living room that doesn’t feel full as soon as it has a couple of toys in it.
An early repayment plan?
No. No plans.
I mean, we will make over payments, both regularly and ad hoc. We’ll pay it off reasonably quickly just because some habits stick, maybe in the next 10 to 15 years. But this time we will have more balance, saving, investing and even more spending than when we previously had a mortgage. Money is a tool and we’ll use it in the ways we think it will best help our family.
I’m sure you’ll hear more about what we get up to, repaying or not, mistakes galore, quandaries between saving, investing and paying off debt.