For most of us, housing is one of the biggest expenses we face each month. Experts suggest keeping housing to 30% of your budget, yet high cost-of-living areas can claim much more. It’s a huge expense no matter where you live, and many people can’t imagine what it’s like to live without a mortgage. If you’ve ever wondered exactly what it feels like to be mortgage-free, you won’t want to miss this conversation.
As someone who also prioritized paying off our mortgage, I love to hear other people’s stories about debt freedom. It’s especially important to share these stories, as no two journeys are alike.
Keith Robinson sat down with me to discuss the actual earth-shattering moment he and his family became mortgage-free. In addition to sharing the twists and turns of his debt-free journey in California, he also delivers actionable tips if you want to pay off your mortgage early.
The Great Recession (2007-2009) caused higher levels of unemployment, plummeting real estate values and a lot of people to feel uneasy about their financial situation. Many parts of the United States were hit hard during this financial crisis, especially my home town of metro Detroit.
Today, I talk with Christin McKamey, a fellow metro Detroiter and the blogger behind Veggie Chick. We discuss how the Great Recession affected her and her husband Robert financially and emotionally. At one point, Christin found herself in nearly six-figures of debt with no job prospects. Her drive to improve her financial situation helped her to eliminate her debt and eventually become mortgage-free.
We chat about her and her husband’s financial past and upbringing, how she earned extra money to get rid of her debt and what they will do with their money now that they are mortgage-free.
In order to achieve financial independence, you need to first understand what your annual expenses are. That’s how much money you need to live comfortably every year.
Your annual expenses can include things like housing, transportation, food, utility bills, entertainment, travel and the many other things that make your life … well, your life!
For our family, I’ve found that number to range between $60,000 and $70,000 per year. That number is after taxes and it doesn’t include money for saving and investing.
With lower annual expenses, it would definitely be a lot easier for our family to become financially independent.
If we’re using the 4% rule to calculate how much to save to become FI, then we’d need $1,500,000 – $1,750,000. Considering I have around $4,000 in a taxable brokerage account at 37 years old, that’s going to take quite a while!
What would it feel like to never make a mortgage payment ever again?
For our Mortgage Freedom series, we’re interviewing Colin Murphy who eliminated his mortgage in less than five years. Colin is a father, a husband, and a Chicago native. He’s going to let us peek inside and see how he made this monumental feat happen.
No student loans, credit card debt, personal loans, car payments and, yes … no mortgage.
After 7 years of educating myself, diligent planning and partnership with my wife, we officially do not owe a single dollar to anyone. (We do have a late fee for Moana at the library. Does that count?)
We’re incredibly excited about our young family’s future and the opportunities that our debt freedom has opened up for us.